Terms of the new agreement will be reviewed by the Council, Equity's governing body, for a recommendation to the membership. It will then be sent to Equity members who have worked under LORT Contract since 2005 and are eligible to vote.
The LORT Agreement is used by over 70 regional not-for-profit theatres and generated over 60,000 work weeks in the 2007-2008 season (June-May). Members' earnings exceeded $50 million during that period, prior to the current economic crisis, according to the announcement.
"The negotiations occurred during a period of unparalleled financial distress for the American theatre and Equity's work force," the union reported.
"In this very tough economic climate, Actors' Equity and the LORT producers approached this negotiation in a spirit of creative partnership," stated John P. Connolly, Equity's executive director, who served as chief negotiator. "Both sides understood the amazing artistry and profound dedication that actors and stage managers bring to their work, and the important cultural and economic impetus that regional theatres give to their communities. Working together, we will weather the storm."
The Equity negotiating team was chaired by councillor Robin Gammell and Dan Mooney. Guidance and assistance was provided by senior business representative Zalina Hoosein. Details about the new agreement will be posted on the Actors' Equity website and in Equity News in the coming weeks.