Broadway Strike - Day three: Signs are this strike may last for weeks, not days!

Local One Pickets

As the strike by Local One, Broadway's unionised stage hands enters its third day, signs are this strike will last for weeks, not days, as both sides are making increasingly acrimonious comments, blaming each other for the strike.

At a press conference/ rally of Local One at St. Malachi�s church James J. Claffey Jr., the president of Local 1, said "They (The League) continue to say featherbedding and they keep saying basically that we're thieves...We can't negotiate under those circumstances."

The League responded in a press statement which reads "[Local One] left the negotiating table and abruptly went on the picket line. They refused to budge on nearly every issue, protecting wasteful, costly and indefensible rules that are embedded like dead weights in contracts so obscure and old that no one truly remembers how, when or why they were introduced."

Claims denied by the union. Claffey said at the meeting held at St. Malachi�s church "We have made compromises. It's just never enough. We've granted 9 or 10 things. They want 30 or 40. They cannot go through our contract after 121 years in one negotiation and just annihilate us."

The union has the full support of Actors� Equity Association and Local 802, the musicians� union, with members from both unions out on the streets offering solidarity to Local One picketers. A number of actors from BrRoadway shows were at the rally, including David Hyde Pierce of "`Curtains'' and Brian Cox of Tom Stoppard's "Rock `n' Roll".

Actors, and members of the musician union - Local 802, were yesterday drinking coffee to warm themselves as their offered their supports to pickets outside Broadway theatres.

The league has been speculating that the strike will cost the city $17 million a day, however the New York Times reports today that "Jason Bram, an economist with the Federal Reserve Bank of New York who has studied tourism�s role in the city�s economy, sees little harm to the city. �Unless it goes on for a really long time, I can�t see it having any discernible impact on the overall economy,� Mr. Bram said.

However, this is of little benefit to tourists to the city who have planned their trip around visiting a Broadway show. For those who have been planning a visit to New York to take in a Broadway show, remember off-Broadway is running normally. So, it may be cheaper for you to still visit, and visit an Off-Broadway venue, rather than cancel your tickets. Any strays from Broadway shows, who attend an Off-Broadway venue, will certainly receive a warm welcome, as off-Broadway will be seizing this opportunity to impress upon tourists that Broadway is not the only good theatre that New York has to offer.

For more about the strike you can read:

Broadway Strike! - Day one
Broadway Strike! - Day two

Click here to find out which Broadway shows are playing, and which ones are not.

Originally published on

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