BroadwayCon has reached a three-year agreement with the Actors’ Equity Association that sets standard contracts for Equity members, while adding provisions for shorter appearances.
The new agreement increases weekly rates for actors that take part in the three-day convention, however the agreement actually lowers the overall expense for BroadwayCon this year, as it tailors parts of the contract to performances that can last less than an hour, said Melissa Anelli, chief executive of Mischief Management, which produces BroadwayCon.
Under the agreement, actors will receive a 95% increase in weekly minimum salary, the weekly minimum for stage managers will more than double and overall, wages will increase by 2.5% each year.
Anelli said that there is now a higher bar, however, on who receives the weekly rates. While some performers are asked to rehearse or work multiple days, most are needed for less than an hour at the event, Actors’ Equity said in the press release.
BroadwayCon will end up paying stage managers about the same rate as last year, she said, as they were already paying the managers about double the minimum. The new contract just changes the minimum amount required under contract.
“This contract is just a small example of the big achievements we’ve made in contract negotiations all over the country in the last year,” said Mary McColl, executive director of Actors’ Equity, in the press release.
In the past, BroadwayCon negotiated agreements each year with Actors’ Equity under a business theater agreement, which largely set weekly rates for actors that appeared in performances for the convention. This lead to a standoff last year, in which Equity issued a “do not work” edict to its members until an agreement was eventually reached.
Anelli said the issue was that the weekly contract did not apply to most of the appearances and put BroadwayCon over budget.
“We were paying actors for a week of work when we only needed them for three days,” Anelli said.
While the contract should lower the overall expense of BroadwayCon for this coming convention, Anelli said she could not say whether it would have an impact on ticket prices for the convention in 2019 and beyond.
This year’s BroadwayCon is scheduled for January 26 through January 28, 2018 at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center.