Broadway Strike - Day eight: As the stike enters its second week, the Union and League sit down at the negotiation table
|Local One Pickets|
As the strike enters its second week, hopes are rising that a settlement may be possible before Thanksgiving.
On the 14 Nov 2007, The League of American Theatres and Producers and Broadway's unionised stage hands, (members of Local one - part of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees) issued a joint statement that there would meet for negotiations over the coming weekend. The statement also said there would be no further public comments from the Union or the League until that time.
Well the weekend has arrived, and the League and the Union will sit down at 10am on 17 Nov 2007 for their first round of negotiations since the 8 Nov 2007. The fact that the Union and the League have made no public comments about the dispute since the 14 Nov 2007 is itself a positive sign that both sides are seeking a settlement.
The public comments made by the League and the Union in the first few days of the strike were intransigent, confrontational and seemed guaranteed to create an atmosphere where talks would prove unfruitful, so as the old adage goes, there silence over the last four days as indeed been golden.
The second positive sign is the intervention of the Disney Theatrical Group who played an active role in bringing both sides to the negotiation table. The presence of Robert W. Johnson, a top labour relations executive from Disney, should generate some trust, as Disney Theatrical Group is respected by both parties (Disney is not a member of the League).
Thomas C. Short, the president of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage, who will also be at the negotiation table, representing Local One, is said to have a great deal of respect for Johnson. Peter Schneider, the former head of Disney Theatrical said "Tom Short respects [Johnson] beyond belief. If anybody can bring a sense of security, fairness and calmness to this situation, it's Robert."
A number of Broadway shows hang in the balance, if the talks succeed, then 'Dr Seuss, and How the Grinch Stole Christmas.' 'Cyrano de Bergerac,' 'Curtains' and 'The Drowsy Chaperone' will all resume business as normal. If the strike continues throughout next week, then rumours are growing that some, if not all of these shows, will be posting closing notices in the next few weeks.
All involved in the Broadway industry are hoping for a quick and equitable settlement to this dispute.
Click here to find out which Broadway shows are playing, and which ones are not.
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