Breaking: Carnegie Hall is shut by strike

Breaking: Carnegie Hall is shut by strike


norman lebrecht

October 02, 2013






A statement by the hall on its peremptory closure:



Local One Stagehands Demand Jurisdiction in New Education Wing,

In Ways That Would Compromise Carnegie Hall’s Education Mission

New Spaces Designed To House Carnegie Hall’s Music Education and Community Programs Scheduled to Open in Fall 2014

All Future Performances Currently Remain on Schedule, 

Daily Updates To Be Provided

Read commentary here.

Read the union statement here.


(For Immediate Release, New York, NY)—Carnegie Hall today announced that its Opening Night performance—scheduled for tonightWednesday, October 2—has been cancelled due to a strike by Carnegie Hall’s stagehands, represented by IATSE/Local One (International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees). The season-opening concert by The Philadelphia Orchestra, conducted by Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin and featuring violinist Joshua Bell and vocalist/double bassist Esperanza Spalding, was scheduled to begin at 7:00 p.m. in Stern Auditorium/Perelman Stage. All future performances remain on Carnegie Hall’s schedule, and daily updates will be issued pending resolution of the strike.In opting to strike, the stagehands have rejected a proposed new agreement that includes annual wage and benefit increases and continued jurisdiction throughout Carnegie Hall’s concert venues. It also provides new additional work opportunities in the renovated upper floors of the building. The strike is an attempt to force Carnegie Hall to agree to the union’s demand for jurisdiction over the whole of Carnegie Hall’s newly-created Education Wing in ways that would compromise Carnegie Hall’s education mission. These new spaces, dedicated to the Hall’s expanding music education and community programming, are scheduled to open in fall 2014.Acceptance of the union’s demands would not only restrict education work within the new spaces, it would divert significant funds away from the Hall’s music education programs and into stagehand fees. Local One also demands that Carnegie Hall displace other union employees currently performing maintenance work in the new Education Wing, insisting that stagehands perform this work which will involve a substantially higher cost.“Carnegie Hall sincerely regrets any inconvenience this strike will cause our artists, concertgoers, and everyone with whom we work,” said Clive Gillinson, Executive and Artistic Director of Carnegie Hall. “We are disappointed that, despite the fact that the stagehands have one of the most lucrative contracts in the industry, they are now seeking to expand their jurisdiction beyond the concert hall and into the new Education Wing in ways that would compromise Carnegie Hall’s education mission. There is no precedent for this anywhere in New York City. In addition, the activities in the education spaces, including education and community programs offered to the public for free or low cost, have nothing to do with the performance-related work they do in the concert halls. We remain strongly committed to reaching a fair agreement that continues to recognize the value they bring to Carnegie Hall and that also enables us to effectively and sustainably deliver on our education and community mission.”Carnegie Hall’s position is based on the fact that IATSE/Local One—a theatrical union whose fundamental jurisdiction is tied to performance spaces—has no collective bargaining agreements governing education spaces in any New York-area music conservatories, universities with music education programs, or other local facilities supporting education work. In addition, Carnegie Hall’s previous agreements with its stagehands have never included jurisdiction within the spaces on the building’s upper floors, the location of the new Education Wing.Working toward an equitable solution, Carnegie Hall has offered to extend the union’s jurisdiction into the Education Wing in a way that would preserve the operational flexibility needed to create a more informal, hands-on learning environment for activities serving students, young artists, and teachers, while also ensuring a sustainable and meaningful financial approach required to effectively manage these new spaces.

Carnegie Hall has been in negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement with its stagehands since mid-2012. The stagehands’ most recent agreement expired on August 31, 2012. While negotiations were ongoing, both the stagehands and Carnegie Hall had agreed to work under the terms of their previous agreement. In order to avoid any disruption to concertgoers and the public, Carnegie Hall urged the stagehands to extend their current collective bargaining agreement and not strike while discussions continue. In choosing to strike, IATSE/Local One has rejected this proposal.


  • PK Miller says:

    Oh Lord… I am soooo tired of unions–as much as I am the Teabaggers & Republicans, (“Rethugracans” as a Facebook friend calls them!) Do your jobs, work on issues in the collective bargaining talks and be GLAD YOU HAVE A JOB. See NYC Opera, Minnesota Orchestra etc. This, boys & girls is NOT how to Win Friends & Influence People!

    • “Do your jobs, work on issues in the collective bargaining talks and be GLAD YOU HAVE A JOB”

      Would you say the same thing to the union musicians in Minnesota?

      • Robert Fitzpatrick says:

        The Carnegie stage hands make a lot more that ANY musician in the MO. If the strike were being called to create new jobs, one could at least have a rational discussion. If the purpose of the strike is to add even more income to their very serious 6 figure salaries, some might call it greed. The top earners among the Carnegie crew are in the $400K-500K/year range including massive overtime. The decisions made here could affect every educational institution in NYC if they perform in Union controlled spaces.

        • John Kelly says:

          Jobs for the boys. See my post below. I was rather looking forward to hearing the wonderful orchestra from Philadelphia tonight together with Mr. Bell (who I first heard in Philadelphia in 1982). I guess he’s going to lose his fee. Not happy.

          Last time I was in Buenos Aires the opera stagehands went on strike. No opera. New York, the new Buenos Aires.

  • MacroV says:

    I’m generally fairly supportive of unions – and certainly have been with the Minnesota Orchestra – but the stagehands are already the highest-paid employees at Carnegie Hall and they’re not being “busted” from their regular jobs; this is about extending their turf into other areas where they don’t necessarily belong (and where other unionized workers apparently already work). So they lose me on this one.

    • KarenB says:

      I completely agree with you. I have dealt with IATSE/Local 1 employees at Carnegie Hall several times in the past and have found them to be extremely professional, but their contract is totally inappropriate for an educational environment. Imagine trying to teach children in the community if a stagehand has to be called every time a music stand or chair needs to be moved or adjusted.

      • MWnyc says:

        And by the way, folks, KarenB isn’t exaggerating. If you are performing at Carnegie Hall, you are not permitted to move your own chair or music stand around, even between pieces, no matter how much more quick or efficient doing so would be. You must let a stagehand come out and move it for you (while the audience sits and twiddles its thumbs and the atmosphere created by the music is dissipated).

        The stagehands’ union insists on this.

  • Larry W says:

    Readers should take care not to confuse or commingle the Teamsters union with the musicians’ union.

  • Erik Ochsner says:

    What is the source of the info?

  • Daniel Farber says:

    “All future performances CURRENTLY remain on schedule.” Until they’re not. If my experience is typical, it can be said that Carnegie Hall’s record in notifying ticket-holders of cancellations is abysmal, as is their failure to reimburse credit cards for cancellations until you call them more than once, as is their failure to acknowledge donations “in a timely manner.” A more honest notification would be to say that “all future performance are in serious jeopardy,” pending the settling of the strike.

  • Clare says:

    An edit for your headline: IATSE are not teamsters. Teamsters drive trucks. “Shut by stagehand strike” is correct.

  • Sanford Rothenberg says:

    To New Yorkers reeling from the demise of the New York City Opera,this comes as an additional blow.For European readers unfamiliar with Carnegie Hall,it occupies the ground floor of a building on the southeast corner of West 57th Street and 7th Avenue in Manhattan.There are offices and studios,as well a a smaller recital hall occupying the upper floors.The union never had a foothold where the other offices and studios were concerned,and is now attempting to gain territory.It would appear that both sides share culpability in this case.

    • MWnyc says:

      Sanford, don’t forget Zankel Hall, the mid-size performance space in the basement.

      I’m not clear where on where you think that Carnegie Hall’s culpability lies. They don’t need stagehands in offices and studios.

  • John Koen says:

    Be aware that the posting is the press release from Carnegie Hall, so of course it is designed to tell the employers story. Thanks for posting, Norman

    John Koen, cellist

    The Philadelphia Orchestra

    In other news (maybe already posted by Norman), we’re staying home tonight to do a pop-up concert at home.

    • Robert Fitzpatrick says:

      That’s impressive. A pop-up concert for the local community instead of playing in Carnegie shows flexibility and vision. Congrats to POA and its union musicians for turning New York’s loss into Philadelphia’s gain.

  • John Kelly says:

    I was supposed to attend tonight and got a robocall from Carnegie Hall telling me not to come. Glad I didn’t drive all the way into NYC to find out at 7 pm.

    Now, these characters (the stagehands) make extraordinary amounts of money as this article in the NYTimes mentioned in 2009.


    Published: October 27, 2009

    Some of the highest-paid people at Carnegie Hall will never have their names on the big posters outside or sit in its executive suites or stand next to famous conductors. They are members of Carnegie’s permanent stage crew, the self-effacing men in dark suits who glide out to tote a podium, shift a music stand and make sure that concerts start on time, or at all.

    Clive Gillinson, Carnegie’s top executive, says stagehands have huge and varied jobs to carry out, far more so than at halls like the Met.

    The men — Dennis O’Connell, properties manager; James Csollany, carpenter; John Goodson and John Cardinale, electricians; and Kenneth Beltrone, carpenter — were identified on Carnegie’s tax return for the 2007-8 season as being the hall’s leading five earners after its top executive, Clive Gillinson. Their annual compensation ranged from Mr. O’Connell’s $422,599 (with an additional $107,445 in benefits and deferred compensation) to Mr. Goodson’s $327,257 (with $76,459 in benefits and deferred compensation), the return showed.

    Readers of this blog may well ask themselves whether these levels of compensation are fair and reasonable for moving the odd Steinway around or putting away a hundred or so chairs…………………pension is probably pretty good too I would bet.

    I certainly believe this is a further manifestation that New York, like Chicago, is a “city that works” as the saying is over here………………….

    Can’t make that playing the violin in the NYPO.

  • Rick says:

    First of all, Teamsters are NOT stagehands – they are entirely different unions with entirely different internationals. Secondly, the failure of NYC Opera had absolutely nothing to do with the unions, it was mismanagement by the leadership, pure and simple. Thirdly, there’s a common misconception about unions that they are tied to a physical space, like a theatre, or a store. This is not true, the contract is instead with the employer – thus if the employer is expanding it’s business, the unions who work for the employer would be deficient to not negotiate jurisdiction – their purpose is to protect the wages and working condition of the workers for all covered work by an employer. That’s what the union members are paying their officers to do.

  • Rick says:

    The answer is yes. Can you really imagine that these men were just moving the odd piano around for this kind of money? Or is it more reasonable to think that they were working continuous, 80 hour weeks because that’s what their employers required of them? All large unionized orchestras are fanatically strict about stopping work within seconds of the scheduled end time. This saves the employer huge sums of money because you’re usually talking about 80-100 people, rather than five stagehands.

    • MWnyc says:

      Rick, I’m pretty sure Carnegie Hall would love to hire more stagehands and have them work 40-hour weeks, rather than paying the existing stagehands 150% of their hourly wage (time-and-a-half, as we call it in the States) for every hour over 40.

      This union won’t allow that. They want to restrict the number of stagehands so that the ones there have to be paid all that lucrative overtime.

      You and I can’t apply for those lucrative stagehand positions at Carnegie Hall. IATSE won’t let us into the union, even as apprentices.

  • I’m sure the IATSE has another version of this story. Sorry to say, but the arts community is not just the performing artists. There are a lot of people with specialized skills who work behind the scenes. I have worked alongside many members of this union and they are good people who do their jobs professionally and well. If you want a performance to go smoothly and safely, you need these guys, not some minimum wage flunkie or intern doing the job.

    • “There are a lot of people with specialized skills who work behind the scenes.”

      Exactly,and most of that work is performed long before, orlong after, performers are in the building.

      • John Kelly says:

        Undoubtedly true. But would you care to compare their levels of compensation with others who work just as hard and as long in all kinds of places for a LOT LESS. These folks seem to be the Gordon Geckos of Carnegie Hall (“Greed is Good”)

        • Are those other people rigging very, very heavy things that will be hanging over my head?

          • MWnyc says:

            Are the stagehands at Carnegie rigging heavy things that will be hanging over your head?

            Don’t confuse what stagehands do at a concert hall like Carnegie or Avery Fisher with the formidable jobs stagehands do at places like the Met and BAM and Broadway theaters that present fully-staged performances.

          • John Kelly says:

            Yes, they are. They’re working in Broadway theatres for much less money rigging more things in a week than gets “rigged” at Carnegie in a season. Most of the “rigging” at Carnegie is assembling and disassembling platforms for choirs and brass sections, moving pianos and chairs and music stands. Come on, I can do that with a bad back and no worker’s comp insurance.

          • They’re responsible for the handling and careof musical instruments worth many thousands of dollars.

            …And there’s more rigging in a concert hall than people might think…which brings me back to my earlier comment that the fact that you don’t see the work does not mean it’s not being done.

          • Michael Schaffer says:

            So, where is all that overhead rigging at Carnegie Hall? I see a few small lights, maybe a few mics suspended from cables above the stage, that’s it.

            Those people may be responsible for the handling of musical instruments worth many thousands of dollars, but I don’t see how that justifies them making 2-3 times as much as an airline captain does who is really responsible for the lives of hundreds of people and equipment worth many millions, sometimes several hundred millions of dollars.

          • Again, the fact that you don’t see the work does not mean it’s not being done, and if you, as an audience, don’t seethe rigging, that means they’ve done their jobs well.

            Airline pilots don’t work 80+hours/week.

          • Michael Schaffer says:

            I know that the fact that we don’t see the work does not mean it’s not being done. And it’s easy to imagine there is a lot of stuff going on that we don’t see in a theater or opera house because of all the sets and props and stuff on the stage and how it moves around and all that.

            But we are talking about *Carnegie Hall*. Please tell us what all that marvelous invisible overhead rigging above the stage at Carnegie Hall actually is. What is all the stuff that we don’t see there?

            Your comment about the hours of airline pilots doesn’t make sense at all. You can’t just pick and choose which factors you want to take into account and which not. So they work less hours. But they operate equipment which is literally a thousand times more expensive. Plus they have a far higher responsibility for many more people’s lives literally all the time they are at work. So by your logic, they should actually make a thousand times more than a Carnegie Hall stage hand. Or the other way around. OK, cut that in half because they only fly around for 40h/week or so. But then they are responsible for the safety of more people all the time while stage hands in a concert hall sit around a lot while the rehearsal/performance is going on. So let’s double that. No we are back to a factor of 1000. So according to your logic, if an airline captain makes $200,000 a year, a stage hand should make around $200 a year.

            Sounds about right.

  • Una says:

    None of this would happen if they could agree on a decent health care plan in America, and not play politics and games with people’s lives and health. We have problems here in Britain and we are far from perfect either, but at least we don’t turn anyone away from hospitals or doctors when they are sick, or ask for a credit card as payment!

    • MWnyc says:

      Una, you’re right about the messed-up health care system in the States. But a dispute like this one would happen even if we had something like the NHS or Canadian single-payer insurance.

      The Carnegie stagehands have health insurance, and it’s probably a pretty generous plan. If they didn’t, they’d have gone on strike over it long ago.

  • Andy L. says:

    This is IATSE Local One president James Claffey’s statement to the press this morning:


    Statement To The Press Regarding Carnegie Hall


    Local One has unfortunately been left with no choice but to exercise its legal rights at Carnegie Hall after 13 months of bargaining. Carnegie Hall Corporation has spent or will spend $230 million on its ongoing studio tower renovation, but they have chosen not to appropriately employ our members as we are similarly employed throughout the rest of Carnegie Hall.

    The Union has been very respectful and honorable throughout the entire bargaining process. Carnegie Hall Corporation continued for 13 months to fail to acknowledge the traditional and historic work that we perform and after no significant progress, we found it absolutely necessary to take action to protect the members that we represent.

    Contrary to today’s press statement released by Carnegie Hall Corporation, Local One has never proposed the elimination of any current Carnegie Hall employees, whether Union represented or otherwise and we remain willing and always available to bargain for a successful resolve.

    James J. Claffey, Jr.


    Local One, I.A.T.S.E.

  • Mare says:

    You don’t do that job unless you know what you are talking about shut up!

  • M says:

    You don’t know what you are talking you really think all they does is move an odd piano!

    If you don’t know John kelly then don’t speak for them!!!!!

  • Rick says:

    Again, you don’t seem to understand John. I would submit that if a CH stagehand worked for 80 hours a week on average by the direction of his boss, they would easily reach that level of compensation. I don’t know what the contract says, but if it was double time after 40 hours, that would mean that the second 40 hours would be equal to two more week’s pay. Or: three times their contracted salary. I imagine that Mr. O’Connell worked way above scale with a title of property manager, so looking at the lower salary of $327k, that would place the base salary at $114k – to live in one of the most expensive cities in the US. It’s much easier for me to believe that there was one season where somebody in CH’s management never looked at the numbers for a year, and never thought to divide the work among more stagehands in order to avoid the overtime.

    What’s more, just as the work of a violinist isn’t that of squeaking out a few notes; a stagehands job is not just putting away a hundred chairs. To (probably) misquote Hamlet: There are more things between heaven and earth Horatio than can be dreamt of in your philosophy.

    • MWnyc says:

      The existing stagehands don’t want to divide the work among more stagehands and avoid the overtime; they want the (very lucrative) overtime pay.

      Don’t believe me? Go try to get into that union so you can apply for a job as a Carnegie stagehand.

  • Rick says:

    Hi MWnyc, I’m afraid that you’re wrong on both counts. Union contracts only list minimum staffings, not maximums. If the hall asked for 30 stagehands, the local would provide them, rather than say that they’ll only provide half of that who will work double the hours. Remember, CH can hire absolutely anybody they want to be a stagehand – that’s federal law. It’s only that the person they hire will be required to join the union. It’s the same for the musicians, ticket takers, cleaning staff, etc. etc.

    Also, like all the entertainment unions, including the musicians in Local 802 NYC, there are availability lists of workers that are ready to work with a single phone call. Every member of Local 1 isn’t working at the exact same time.

    You can also call Local 1 and apply to be an apprentice I see from their website – it says 2-3 years to full membership.

    At any rate, it is folly to imagine that any unionized group who works at CH is even remotely threatening the financial health of the organization. This is actually in my mind a pretty minor job action within the industry, and I would bet money that it will be over before the night.

    • MWnyc says:

      Yes, people who go to work as Carnegie stagehands have to join the union. What if the union won’t admit them?

      Your reference to a minimum number of stagehands points to another problem, one notorious enough that it has a name – “featherbedding”. That means insisting that a certain minimum number of workers be on hand regardless of whether the work to be done requires them.

      (Featherbedding was one of the issues in the Broadway strike of 2007 – and one of the reasons the theater owners were willing to let the strike go on as long as it did..)

  • Rick says:

    Bravo Jeffrey. I’m not sure I’ve ever read a Carnegie Hall review that complained about the vanishing atmosphere due to the movement of music stands. Also, I would note that the musicians union and the stagehands union seem to be on excellent working terms – they’ve both agreed to not cross the other’s picket lines in years past.

    • MWnyc says:

      No point in complaining about the breaking of atmosphere when there’s not much that can be done about it. Most people take it for granted, I think.

    • Michael Schaffer says:

      “I’m not sure I’ve ever read a Carnegie Hall review that complained about the vanishing atmosphere due to the movement of music stands.”

      Very true. That’s why we have to read concert reviews *all the time* in which the critic complains about how the stage hands who moved a few stands around between pieces and maybe rolled a piano on stage *totally ruined the atmosphere* because they simply weren’t as awesome as the $500,000 guys at Carnegie Hall. But then these all have a PhD in stagehanding and that’s why they make 2-3 times as much as university professors who only have PhDs in fields like medicine, biotechnology, or physics or easy stuff like that.

  • Rick says:

    They’re required by federal law. That’s the way unions work. Minimums are simply that – if anybody has a gripe to make about minimums it is Local 802 in their Broadway contracts. When’s the last time that you heard a Broadway show with a full orchestra? Decades. And that’s because the minimums were stripped away.

    For the stagehands – a dancer from Spiderman lost his foot because the producers wouldn’t properly staff the most technically complex show in NYC’s history. Minimums are for safety, period. No Broadway show has ever closed due to minimum union staffings, from any local. Google the NY Times article on where the money goes when you buy a Broadway ticket – salaries are a tiny amount of the ticket price.

    BTW, sorry that my comments won’t thread – super irritating…

  • Wow. Is thisthe point where *I* get accused of being “elitist”? Most of the people I know who denigrate the stagehands’ union couldn’t even *begin* to do the work.

  • “Your comment about the hours of airline pilots doesn’t make sense at all”

    Ofcourse it does. The stagehands make the money they do because they work 40+ overtime hours per week.

    • Michael Schaffer says:

      You mean 40+ hours *of overtime* on top of regular 40h? Or 40h plus a little overtime as necessary here or there? From other comments in this thread, it seems like the former. So that’s 80+ hours every week? Doing what? Playing cards while the orchestras rehearse or perform? Operating the invisible, or rather, non-existent “highly complex rigging” above the stage at Carnegie? I have to assume it is not just invisible but also non-existent since you have been asked about it several times now, but you keep ignoring the question.

  • Rick says:

    You’ll have to provide me with a few links Michael of reviews that say as much…

    The notion that there should be a direct connection between one’s level of education and their salary is just a dream. And it should stay that way in my opinion. If I ran the zoo, the highest paid workers in the USA would be the people who do the jobs that I wouldn’t want to do in a million years.

  • Stereo says:

    Sack the lot of them and get rid of the union. Unions have always crippled industry.

    • Yes.That crippling way they insist on safe working conditions and a 5-day, 40-hour week.How DARE they!

      • Simon says:

        Oh come on! It’s not the insistence on a 40-hour week that’s crippling the industry. In fact, judging by the above comments, these workers are more than happy to work over 40 hours a week (even as much as 80 hours a week) for overtime pay. What’s at stake, it seems is (i) the exclusive right to that overtime pay (which is at odds with the various statements on health and safety) and (ii) the union’s exclusive right to provide workers to all parts of the building (i.e., the above discussion on jurisdiction). No union should have an exclusive right to supply workers to a particular business – that’s outrageous! Essentially, this is a “closed shop” argument – it’s all about union power and nothing to do with actually protecting fair pay and conditions for workers.

        • I was pointing out the protections that workers — union and non-union alike — all over the country enjoy — protections which were won for them by unions and which, without unions, would quickly go away.

        • Joe says:

          As someone who frequently has to schedule staff for a one-week residency in a theatre – not Carnegie Hall, but similarly structured – I often request to have the same stagehands throughout the week despite the cost of the overtime because the continuity helps the entire process. Knowing that you’re going to see the same guy the next day who has learned the ins and outs of the show the day before is worth more to the show than it costs in dollars.

  • Daniel Farber says:

    this just in: Tonight’s Carnegie Hall Performance to Proceed While Talks Continue With IATSE/Local One

    (ForImmediate Release, New York, NY)—Carnegie Hall today announced that the concert by the AmericanSymphony Orchestra, scheduled for tonight, Thursday,October 3 at 8:00 p.m. in Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage, will proceedwhile contract talks continue between Carnegie Hall and its stagehands,represented by IATSE/Local One (International Alliance of Theatrical StageEmployees).

    All other performances remain on the schedulepending further updates from Carnegie Hall.

    Ticketholders can direct all questions toCarnegieCharge at 212-247-7800. Ticketholders are encouraged to check carnegiehall.orgfor the most up-to-date information.

  • Larry Shaw says:

    I too schedule shows throughout the country and overseas. When in NY (and the many other US cities where they exist) I always insist the venue provides IATSE stage technicians even if that venue doesn’t have a contract with the IATSE. Why? Because I don’t have time to train people. Because I need competent people who know what they are doing. I need people who will not make dangerous mistakes with rigging thousands of pounds over the performer’s or audience’s heads (just because you don’t notice such things doesn’t mean there aren’t items rigged in concealed locations), in electrical work throughout the venue and in handling the very expensive and often fragile properties we bring with us. Besides the safety of our performers, audience and equipment I also must be concerned with liability. In the unthinkable case of an accident do I want to stand in court and explain why I opted to use temporary day laborers instead of the highly trained (and often certified) professional stagehands?

    To comment that these people “just push around music stands” simply displays ignorance of what goes on in professional theatres. Yes, that may be one bit of a technicians job just as a musician might “just sit around backstage doing nothing” when a piece without music for him/her to play is performed. Shall we all now be defined by the simplest tasks we do?

    Finally I agree the pay the department heads got is high. I do know that it is a management decision how many people are hired and for how long. Yes there are rules like if a person is hired and travels to the venue with their tools they get 8 hours pay. But management (often me) decides how many people and what times. On one job I do downtown each year the last performance is Saturday night. Everything sits there until Monday when we load out the show because there is no overtime Monday. There is no pressure from the union to work Sunday to get OT. Its just a rational management decision. And please keep in mind decisions to keep the same people for every call and to work long hours (at Radio City Music Hall I have seen Local 1 crews not be allowed to leave the theatre for days at a time, grabbing naps between rehearsals and racking up huge OT) are not made by the personnel. I’m sure they would rather be at home in bed but unlike the airline pilots mentioned above there are no federal laws requiring certain rest periods. Oh, and a very large amount of stagehand labor is marked up 20% or 40% then billed to us traveling productions so the mentioned pay is actually a profit center for the venue.

    I have yet to hear exactly what the Hall wants to keep Local 1 out of. Could there be a “real theatre” in the “tower”?

    And no, I have no connection with Local 1 except for hiring its people.