Principal flautist sues Boston Symphony Orchestra

Elizabeth Rowe, principal flute with the Boston Symphony Orchestra (BSO), is suing for equal pay. The lawsuit is possible under an updated ‘Massachusetts Equal Pay Law’ that came into effect on 1 July.

Rowe is currently paid around USD210,000 (€170,800) per year. However, principal oboist John Ferrillo – whose job most closely resembles Rowe’s – is thought to earn USD280,000 a year.

The filing states that BSO “has discriminated against Rowe on the basis of gender by paying her an amount less than other comparable males.”

The flautist made BSO aware of the discrepancy, but her attorney Elizabeth Rodgers said that the orchestra did not act appropriately on this information. She is seeking over USD200,000 in unpaid wages.

Rowe has been with BSO since 2004. In addition to her performing duties she teaches at the New England Conservatory and prior to joining BSO she played with the New World Symphony in Miami, as well as a number of other American orchestras. She is also a member of the Boston Symphony Chamber Players.