IATSE Calls To Authorize Strike Vote, Will Affect Broadway and Touring Shows

Hadestown National Broadway Tour, photo provided by Hadestown/Dr. Phillips Center
Hadestown National Broadway Tour, photo provided by Hadestown/Dr. Phillips Center /

If you’re a Broadway junkie, you might want to think twice about buying a ticket to a show as it’s been announced that the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) has called its members to vote to authorize a strike which would immediately halt Broadway and touring productions from happening.

According to the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE), which covers 1,500 stagehands, wardrobe personnel, and hair and makeup artists who work across 28 productions on Broadway and 17 productions on tour across the U.S, it has called its members to participate in a strike authorization vote following protracted, unsuccessful negotiations under the current contract with The Broadway League and Disney Theatrical. The contract in question is named the ‘Pink Contract’ and the two companies previously mentioned collectively represent Broadway and national tour producers. With voting is only open on both Wednesday, July 19 and Thursday, July 20 to members of IATSE, If a deal isn’t reached by Thursday night when voting closes, a strike could happen as soon as Friday, July 21.

In a statement, IATSE International President Matthew D. Loeb expressed that calling for a strike vote is meant to help enact change within the union.

"“This strike vote will send a strong message that we will not accept substandard contracts that fail to acknowledge our workers’ contributions. We will not leave anyone stranded, and we will not back down unless we have a deal the members can accept by the end of the week.”"

Similar to what’s happening inside the theatre industry, in Hollywood, both the Screen Actors Guild (SAG-AFTRA) and the Writers’ Guild of America (WGA) are both striking against the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP), which represents studios such as Universal, Warner Bros, and HBO.

According to Playbill, the last IATSE strike, which was the first in the union’s history, was in 2007. It lasted approximately 19 days. However, in 2021, the union threatened to authorize strike which was eventually averted.

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