Report: Gelb turned down 5-year pay freeze

Report: Gelb turned down 5-year pay freeze


norman lebrecht

August 09, 2014

There’s still silence all round on the mediation efforts at the Met, but one report has it that Peter Gelb previously spurned a 5-year pay freeze offer from the stagehands union, insisting on an immediate 14.5% wage cut.

Report here.


metropolitan-opera exterior


  • newyorker says:

    was 14.5 more or equal to the original pay cut sought?

    what is the net effect of the pay freeze over five years, compared to the 14.5 cut with normal annual increases?

    it’s important not to be too emotional about this. It seems awful from a labor perspective 0 and I hate the prospect of further elongation of this crisis – but what is the net difference in these two opposing solutions?

  • Nick says:

    Gelb’s inexperience in negotiations at this level has become patently obvious, no matter who has been advising him. First the lockout threat. This was announced as a fixed immoveable deadline. Then negotiations at a snail’s pace. Then the threat is temporarily withdrawn. In its place a one-time extension deadline of 72 hours. Then that came and went. In the meantime, a mediator and an auditor have been appointed. Now the further week offered by Gelb is coming to a close. Yet the lockout threat remains in place. What is he going to do next if no agreement is reached? Cry wolf again? The length of all the uncertainty must be having a very serious effect on subscription sales and donations, especially the smaller ones. The experience of past Met lockouts is that it took the House years to recover. Will agreements be in place by later today? I hope so, but I doubt it.

  • NYMike says:

    Meanwhile, the Met’s website indicates tix are on sale from the 9/22 opening onwards.

    • Nick says:

      As long as a lock-out or some other form of work stoppage remains a possibility rather than a fact, the Met will be aiming to sell as many tickets as possible. Equally, most of the public will postpone purchase until sure the season will go ahead as planned. Who wants the hassle of refunds? The Met must surely already be suffering from cash flow difficulties and I reckon these are only likely to get worse as the negotiations drag on.