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The Stagehands of Local 1International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees


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#16 Helene

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Posted 30 December 2013 - 03:39 PM

The elephant in the room is that ballet is danced mostly by women, and dancing, at least in most of the West, is not considered a proper man's occupation -- like nursing and social work, for example -- and women are almost always paid less.

Edited to add: this may not be the case at Royal Danish Ballet and/or Paris Opera Ballet, where the dancers unions traditionally have been strong, to reflect the social safety network of their respective countries.



#17 Kathleen O'Connell

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Posted 30 December 2013 - 05:17 PM

 

 

Leaving aside the technicians coming out of college theatrical production programs, this is the compensation environment that theater operators find themselves in. 

 

Thank you for enlightening us on the benefits of being an uneducated laborer in New York.

You do need to revise your wording of take home pay. Your quoted amounts for take home pay are actually gross pay. Take home pay would deduct Federal income taxes, New Your state and city taxes, plus Social security/Medicare taxes.

I am not knowledgeable on current New York state and city taxes, but my guess is that the take home pay amounts would be approximately, $ 60,000 annually and not near $ 100,000.

 

Although, I consider the intelligence of construction workers and stagehands to be on a relatively low level compared to most educated professions, the arts are not immune to idiots in high ranking positions.

 

 

Yes, it was sloppy of me to use "take home pay" rather than "gross pay." I was trying to draw a distinction between the employee's cash compensation and the amount of compensation received in the form of fringe benefits, and didn't choose my words as carefully as I might have.  I hope my point was clear nonetheless.

 

Re the intelligence of construction workers and stagehands: I come from a working class family. They were all plenty smart. 



#18 Kathleen O'Connell

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Posted 30 December 2013 - 06:45 PM

 

 

Leaving aside the technicians coming out of college theatrical production programs, this is the compensation environment that theater operators find themselves in. 

 

Thank you for enlightening us on the benefits of being an uneducated laborer in New York.

 

 

Just to be clear, I made the distinction between technicians coming out of theatrical production programs and workers from the skilled trades because they are likely to be differently credentialed, not because one group -- or one set of credentials -- is more worthy of a good paycheck than another. 



#19 sandik

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Posted 30 December 2013 - 09:42 PM

As the granddaughter of a union organizer, and the partner of someone who worked for many years as a pipe fitter, I am biased, but my experience has given me a great deal of direct contact with men and women in the skilled trades.   I am very sorry to read such disdainful comments here, in a forum that I have always considered a thoughtful place. 

 

Like all of us, I have met many intelligent, articulate, and insightful people in all walks of life, from all backgrounds.  And I have met a few nitwits.  Some of them come with PhDs and some without even a GED, just like all of us.

 

My undergraduate degree is in technical theater -- some of my colleagues went on to union jobs and have made a comfortable living.  I'm thrilled for them, not just because they can send their own kids to college, but because their work, which can be complex and exacting, is recognized as worthwhile in a culture that does not really value many arts workers.  



#20 volcanohunter

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Posted 30 December 2013 - 10:50 PM

And I have met a few nitwits.  Some of them come with PhDs

off%20topic.gif I'm the daughter of a university professor, and having spent a lot of my childhood in the company of his colleagues, I know this is true more often than I'd care to admit. But I wouldn't want this discussion to veer toward those 'do' vs. 'teach' stereotypes.



#21 sandik

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Posted 30 December 2013 - 11:59 PM

 

And I have met a few nitwits.  Some of them come with PhDs

off%20topic.gif I'm the daughter of a university professor, and having spent a lot of my childhood in the company of his colleagues, I know this is true more often than I'd care to admit. But I wouldn't want this discussion to veer toward those 'do' vs. 'teach' stereotypes.

 

 

Point taken.  Let's get back to the main event!



#22 abatt

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Posted 31 December 2013 - 06:26 AM

Of course the work that the stagehands do is important and they should earn a good living. However, the perception is that the salaries are excessive.  The fact that generations of the same families decide to go into the same unions is telling.  That only happens when the gravy is very, very good. 



#23 Helene

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Posted 31 December 2013 - 10:30 AM

Generations of the same family are migrant farm workers, too. From what I understand, the gravy isn't all that good.

#24 macnellie

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Posted 31 December 2013 - 08:07 PM

I can't stand the classist tone of some of these comments.

#25 Jayne

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Posted 31 December 2013 - 09:58 PM

I think we need to be realistic that some unions are better than others at negotiating wages, over time, etc.  I think in this case, because of the event-driven nature of the work, the stage hand union has more leverage.  Also they do have a specific skill set, not easily duplicated, and NYC is not getting any cheaper (quite the opposite thanks to all those hedgehogs - including the Koch Brothers).  

 

I know of quite a few families who have extensive connections to get their union cards as longshoremen.  But there are many families who are firefighters (also unionized) and they don't get quite as much pay.  (Longshoremen do, depending on their skillsets).

 

As my dad used to say "In the immortal words of Jimmy Carter.....Life.....Is not fair."  (Dad was in the machinists union at Boeing, and his high wages enabled me to attend university without student loans). 

 

Mama's don't let your babies grow up to be cowboys (who make $18k / year), let 'em be doctors and lawyers and stage hands and such! 



#26 abatt

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Posted 01 January 2014 - 06:16 AM

You can't fairly compare public servant unions (firefighters, police) to those paid in the private sector. The former are funded by taxes.




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