Equity Agrees to Negotiate Collectively with Eight Off-Broadway Theatres

News   Equity Agrees to Negotiate Collectively with Eight Off-Broadway Theatres Soon, eight important mid-level Off-Broadway nonprofit companies—Atlantic Theater Company, Classic Stage Company, MCC Theater, The New Group, Primary Stages, Signature Theatre Company, Vineyard Theatre, and Women's Project and Productions—may operate under a single contract with Actors' Equity.

Equity and the Association of Not-for-Profit Theatre Companies (ANTC) have agreed to start talks this spring toward a single pact, Back Stage reported. In the past, each troupe negotiated separately with the performers union. Equity Eastern Regional Director Carol Waaser and ANTC President Jodi Schoenbrun told Back Stage, "There's a level between showcases and Off-Broadway where these theatres sit. People assume they're Off-Broadway and treat them that way. There needs to be an institutionalized contract prior to the Off-Broadway contract."

Equity Business Representative Patrick Lee added, "These individual negotiations became in effect a coordinated process, resulting in nearly identical terms for each company, with the exception of salaries. This dispelled Equity's initial concerns and resulted in better terms for all parties, including salary increases, improved safe and sanitary conditions, and rules that better define proper stage management duties."

Unlike Broadway, Off-Broadway theatre companies have no unifying contract with Actors' Equity.