Stagehands Union and Philadelphia Theatre Company Reach Agreement
By Kenneth Jones
An agreement has been reached with IATSE Local 8, the union representing the stagehand employees, and the not-for-profit Philadelphia Theatre Company, the troupe announced on Feb. 1.
The agreement needs to be ratified by the union leadership and the Philadelphia Theatre Company board of directors.
"During several lengthy meetings all afternoon and last evening, the union made significant movement to come closer to the terms which, although consistent with what PTC had originally proposed, had previously been rejected by the union," said PTC's producing artistic director Sara Garonzik. "We have negotiated a settlement that is reasonable for PTC and appropriate to our size. We want to express our appreciation to our audiences, subscribers and artists for their wonderful support and patience during this challenging period. We are pleased that we can now focus on our mission of producing great theatre."
Performances of The Mountaintop, which have been running since Jan. 19, continue through Feb. 17 at the Suzanne Roberts Theatre. The production is directed by Patricia McGregor and features Sekou Laidlow and Amirah Vann.
Union members marched and were vocal about the strike during the earlier performances of the play, about the final night in the life of Martin Luther King, Jr.'s life.
During the run, PTC explained, "You will see a fully staged performance with fully designed costumes on a nearly completed set, as well as sufficient lighting to illuminate the actors. You will hear some stage directions read in place of key theatrical effects and recorded sound cues. "
PTC is the only Philadelphia resident Equity theatre of its size that uses union stagehands. The troupe's stagehands joined the union in 2012. Read the earlier Playbill.com story about the conflict.
For information, visit PhiladelphiaTheatreCompany.org.
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