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Does anyone know about backstage workers and unions?

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  • Does anyone know about backstage workers and unions?

    I'm in early negotiations with an outsourcing company to head a crew to load, unload, set up and take down for major venues and acts. Isn't there a stage worker's union, especially in the NY and Boston areas? Where could I get a copy of guidelines? I can't find anything on the net.

  • #2
    start at http://www.iatse-intl.org/home.html the official Web Site of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employes, Moving Picture Technicians, Artists and Allied Crafts of the United States, Its Territories and Canada.
    "In a time of universal deceit - telling the truth is a revolutionary act."- George Orwell

    My music: http://www.oranjproductions.com

    The first website dedicated to the the baritone guitar: http://www.thebaritoneguitar.com


    • #3
      First of all - good luck!

      If you contact the hall, they'll be able to tell you what the union demands. Don't take anything for granted because it changes from city to city. You may be dealing with multiple unions (teamsters, stagehands, electricians, carpenters etc)

      If you haven't worked with the hall before, expect to get soaked. Once the union guys figure out you're a newbie, they'll do everything "by the book".

      Pay very close attention to how things get done in the hall, so the next time around you are that much more prepared.

      Don't argue with union labor guys. The result will be a slowdown or stoppage of work. If you have a beef, find out who the guy in charge is and speak to him directly. Be polite and be practical.

      Although the union guys will tell you that they do this or that, don't expect them to know what they're doing or to do it well. Know your own gear and requirements. Label everything. Be as prepared as possible.

      Anything you have to provide in writing, such as a wiring layout or truck pack order, make that documentation so simple and obvious that a 2nd grader would understand it.

      Pay attention to what's going on, but don't be too obvious about it. If you don't see a piano getting dropped, nobody is going to tell you about it. If you hover over the piano mover, he'll just stop working.

      New York - expensive but reasonably competant.

      Boston - almost as expensive but real mickey mouse in some of the halls.

      665 - Neighbor of the Beast

      Originally Posted by RobRoy: I believe that the only way Obama will remain in power is if he suspends elections. And at that point he is no longer president. He is dictator. But I don't believe he will even survive that long. It could be suicide, impeachment by BOTH parties, you name it.


      • #4
        Thanks. There is a local union here. I gotta check into this before I get in too deep.