In a significant stride towards ensuring fair labor practices and respect for workers, the Goodspeed Musical Theatre’s backstage crew, makeup artists, wig and hairstyling professionals, costume and scenic shop workers have successfully unionized. This move is a testament to their unity and resilience, marking a significant milestone in the fight for fair working conditions and recognition of their tireless contribution to the theatre’s success. The voting results were overwhelmingly in favor of unionization, with 35 out of 45 workers supporting it, five opposing, and three votes being contested.
The journey towards unionization began over a year ago, driven by a shared vision of a better workplace and a determination to make it a reality. Although specific dates for the first contract negotiations are yet to be announced, the crew is looking forward to progressing with bargaining and solidifying their gains.
Goodspeed, a historic venue with a rich legacy spanning six decades, has been a stalwart in the musical theatre world. Known for its dedication to preserving, advancing, and creating new works, this Tony Award-winning theatre has been the birthplace of numerous productions like Annie, Man of La Mancha, and Shenandoah.
Matthew D. Loeb, IATSE International President, commented on the successful unionization, stating that it was not only a victory for Goodspeed workers but also an inspiration for workers at regional theatres across the country. He expressed pride in welcoming Goodspeed workers into their growing ranks and assured them of continued support in future negotiations.
Following the successful National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) election in favor of unionizing, the next step for the union is to engage in collective bargaining negotiations with Goodspeed. The aim is to draft a contract that addresses the needs of the represented workers. Union contracts or collective bargaining agreements (CBAs) typically outline terms and conditions of employment, including wages, hours, and working conditions. Both parties – the union and the employer – are obliged to negotiate in good faith to reach an agreement on these terms. As of now, no dates for these negotiations have been scheduled.
In the world of women’s beauty, the role of makeup artists and hairstylists is often underappreciated. However, in theatrical productions like those at Goodspeed, their work is crucial. From eyelash extensions and eyebrow threading to creating elaborate hairstyles, these professionals contribute significantly to the overall aesthetic of a production. Their work, often as intricate and detailed as the performances on stage, helps bring characters to life and enhances the audience’s experience.
The unionization at Goodspeed Musical Theatre is a powerful reminder of the importance of recognizing and respecting all contributors to a production, especially those working behind the scenes. It’s an inspiring example for other institutions in Scottsdale, Arizona, and beyond, where lashes, makeup, and costumes play a pivotal role in various industries, including theatre and fashion.
In conclusion, the successful unionization at Goodspeed is a significant step forward in ensuring fair working conditions and respect for workers in the theatre industry. It serves as an inspiration for workers in similar roles across the country and reinforces the importance of unity and solidarity in achieving common goals.