Most people think it’s not a good idea for trustees of an art museum to start selling off the treasures in the collection in order to pay operating expenses. Such a move goes against the purpose of the institution in the first place — acquire and display works of art for the public to enjoy. But that is what the trustees of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra are doing — in effect, “selling off” the musicians and thus devaluing the very treasures that are the focal point of the entire organization (“BSO leadership decisions damage symphony,” June 17).
We will not be able to keep or attract the best players to a greatly diminished (downsized and underpaid) orchestra. You cannot replace a Rembrandt with a painting by another artist, nor can you replace the cohesive, talented group of musicians who currently grace the stage of the Meyerhoff with a continuing cycle of new players. Musicians, especially ones who have been playing together for years, are not easily replaced, a fact that seems unknown to the current BSO board.