The Playgoer: Friday Lockout Update

Custom Search

Friday, October 12, 2007

Friday Lockout Update

Still in limbo, in short.

Riedel reports the producers' side is now trying to change the language, trying to make it look more like a stagehand "strike" than a producer lockout after all.

The producers are backtracking as fast they can from the word "lockout," which, they've come to realize, makes them look like the bad guys. It's going to be hard for the producers to win a p.r. war if they're the ones shutting down Broadway.

A couple of them have gone so far as to claim that it was the press who put that term out there. Sorry, folks, but at a big producers' meeting last summer, the word "lockout" was used again and again, sources who attended the meeting say.


The strategy that now seems to be emerging is that the producers may toss the ball back at the stagehands by "imposing" their final offer on them....

"Imposing" the final offer means that the producers will simply start living under the terms of the contract they want and leave it to the stagehands to call a strike.

Either way, the people on the inside of this, as you can see, are still planning for the worst.

Meanwhile NY Magazine asks, "Why Is Entertainment Labor Unrest So Freaking Boring?"
These people are entertainers! Couldn't they do something better with their moments in the spotlight? Couldn't those writers out in Hollywood knock out a couple of epically funny press releases mocking their opponents across the table? Couldn't the stagehands in New York work all night to build an enormous gallows spanning 45th Street and hang the producers in effigy? Can't someone, oh someone, make labor unrest fun again?

Point taken. But I still find it interesting. And pretty eff-ing important in determining the conditions under which the work we see on stage is presented to us.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

As Steve On Broadway pointed out, we could make this a lot more interesting by getting involved. Tell the Producers not to shut down Bway just to improve their profit margins. $450 tickets and they want more!

To contact the League of American Theatres and Producers, you may call 212.764.1122 or e-mail them at

League President Charlotte St. Martin's e-mail address is

Director of communications for the League is Alan Cohen at