Tag Archives: pamphlet b

big radio

Changing Channels: from Pamphlet B to SRLA, Network Television

I am pleased to announce that the Federation has concluded negotiations with the Broadway League and Disney Theatrical Productions for a successor Pamphlet B Agreement. The new agreement establishes wages and conditions of employment for musicians working on the road in touring theatrical musical productions. The Federation’s Pamphlet B Agreement is administered by the Federation’s Touring/Theatre/Booking Division (TTBD), headed by Assistant to the President Michael Manley.

Despite a rough start in our initial round of bargaining, the Federation, Disney, and the League were eventually able to find common ground during subsequent negotiations, ultimately reaching a progressive agreement that will become effective retroactively after ratification to March 11, 2016 and extend through March 15, 2020.

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tma conference

2016 TMA Conference in the Nation’s Capitol

Tom MendelWby Tom Mendel, Theatre Musicians Association President Emeritus and Member of AFM Local 10-208 (Chicago, IL)

Our 21st Annual TMA Conference was held at the Loews Madison Hotel in Washington, DC, August 22-23. Lee Lachman of Local 161-710 (Washington, DC) (on behalf of TMA Washington, DC, Chapter President Paul Schultz), Local 161-710 President Ed Malaga, and myself welcomed the attendees.

AFM President Ray Hair spoke about the 100th AFM Convention, his history bargaining and negotiating in Dallas and Ft. Worth, Pamphlet B, and fairness for subs and alternates in orchestras.

In my president’s report, I stated the theme of this conference: the Future of TMA. Two hours of the afternoon session were devoted to a round-table discussion of this topic. I reported on the Pamphlet B negotiations in which TMA has a very active role; the formation a Keyboard Subbing Committee because of what we consider unfavorable practices involving keyboard subs; the formation of the TMA Officers & Members Video Training Committee to produce training videos for TMA officers and members on select subjects such as running a meeting, use of social media, and more. These will be great learning tools located in our TMA Officers Toolbox. I gave a PowerPoint demonstration of a new video on membership recruitment and retention.

I read TMA resolutions of recognition to Carla Lehmeier-Tatum of Local 618 (Albuquerque, NM) for nine years of service as ROPA president and Bruce Ridge of Local 500 (Raleigh, NC) for 10 years of service as ICSOM chair. OCSM President Robert Fraser of Local 247 (Victoria, BC) and Ridge gave eloquent player conference reports. Ridge read an ICSOM resolution recognizing me for my years of service with TMA. I read a report from new ROPA President Mike Smith of Local 30-73 (Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN). Local 161-710 treated conference attendees to a delicious lunch.

AFM Touring/Theatre/Booking and Immigration Director Michael Manley gave a report on Pamphlet B negotiations. He compared data from current “full” Pamphlet B tours and those touring on the SET Agreement. He also described the work his office truly does and the people working in it.

TMA Chapter, Broadway, Membership-at-Large, and Traveler Director reports followed. Legislative Chair Walter Usiatynski of Local 802 (New York City) and Chapter and Membership Recruitment Chair Debbie Brooks of Local 72-147 (Dallas-Ft. Worth, TX) gave standing reports. Lovie Smith-Wright of Local 65-699 (Houston, TX) and 60-471 (Pittsburgh, PA) gave the Diversity Committee report.

tma conference

AFM President Ray Hair addresses the TMA Conference while then TMA President Tom Mendel listens on.

TMA Parliamentarian Paul Castillo of Locals 47 (Los Angeles, CA) and 353 (Long Beach, CA) introduced and moderated the Future of TMA round-table discussion, which resulted in three areas for TMA Executive Board consideration.

The second day began with the executive board report. TMA Webmaster Stephen Green of Locals 47 and 7 (Orange County, CA) gave his report. Newly elected AFM Secretary-Treasurer Jay Blumenthal gave brief introductory remarks. AFM IEB Member and Local 802 President Tino Gagliardi spoke about the new Local 802 Broadway contract. He reported that there were more than 300 musicians working on Broadway contracts.

Local 161-710 President Malaga and Executive Board Member Patrick Plunk gave a special report on organizing the Olney Theatre and its successful effort to become unionized.

Elections results were as follows: President Tony D’Amico of Locals 9-535 (Boston, MA) and 198-457 (Providence, RI); Vice President Paul Castillo; Secretary-Treasurer Mark Pinto of Locals 9-535, 198-457, and 126 (Lynn, MA); Broadway Director Jan Mullen of Local 802; Membership-at-Large Director Lovie Smith-Wright; and Travelers Director Angela Chan of Local 369 (Las Vegas, NV).

Chapter directors elected locally include: Walt Bostian (Boston) of Locals 9-535, 126, and 198-457; Heather Boehm (Chicago) of Local 10-208 (Chicago, IL); Alan Ayoub (Detroit) of Local 5 (Detroit, MI); David Philippus (Las Vegas) of Local 369; Steve Sanders (Northern California) of Local 6 (San Francisco, CA); Jeff Martin (Phoenix) of Local 586 (Phoenix, AZ); Stephen Green (Southern California); Vicky Smolik (St. Louis) of Local 2-197 (St. Louis, MO); and Paul Schultz (Washington, DC) of Local 161-710.

AFM President Ray Hair swore in all officers, chapter directors, and alternates present. Congratulations to Tony D’Amico, Paul Castillo, Mark Pinto, and the executive board on their elections. We are in great hands. TMA’s future is bright!

It has been an honor and a pleasure to serve as TMA president for the past  five years. I extend a special thanks to TMA vice presidents Walter Usiatynski (2013-2016) and Michael Manley (2011-2013) and secretary-treasurers Mark Pinto (2012-present) and Local 10-208 member Leo Murphy (2011-2012) for their outstanding service to TMA. I also thank all of the past and present members of the executive board for their service. TMA is a voluntary organization. The time and effort given by our local and national representatives is greatly appreciated.

New TMA Leader Attends Pamphlet B and SET Negotiations

tony-damicoby Tony D’Amico, Theatre Musicians Association President and Member of Local 9-535 (Boston, MA) and Local 198-457 (Providence, RI)

The Theatre Musicians Association’s 21st annual conference was held mid-August in Washington, DC. At the end of the conference, I had the honor of being elected president of the Theatre Musicians Association (TMA). After serving 10 years as director of the Boston chapter, I couldn’t be more thrilled to step into this new role and serve this remarkable organization.

On behalf of all my fellow theatre musicians, I’d like to offer my thanks and congratulations to outgoing president, Tom Mendel of Local 10-208 (Chicago, IL), and Vice President Walter Usiatynski of Local 802 (New York City) for their inspired leadership these past years. They leave some very large shoes to fill.

One of my first duties as president was to attend a week of negotiations in New York City between the AFM and the Broadway League/Disney Theatrical Productions for a successor agreement to Pamphlet B and the Short Engagement Touring Theatrical Musicals Agreement (SET), which occurred in September. Along with the typical proposals for increased wages and per diem, we asked for an assortment of increases and improvements for our traveling musicians to recognize the value these players bring to the touring musical theatre productions they enhance.

Among the items we put across the table for both Pamphlet B and the SET Agreement were an increase in rehearsal rates, and a provision that would make all weekly contractual wages and premiums pensionable. Other issues of importance were electronic instrument premiums—to address technology being operated by drummers and guitarists—as well as wage increases, and travel and hotel concerns. 

In the SET agreement, we are seeking wage and rehearsal increases, as well as raises in vacation pay and pay for those who double or play more than one instrument in the pit. One pressing issue discussed regarded local keyboard substitutes hired by touring musical productions. These local keyboard players are called in to sub on increasingly difficult keyboard books, with no additional compensation for the huge amount of time they put in to prepare these books.

While we did not reach a deal in these September sessions, AFM President Ray Hair made a strong case for paying our musicians wages and benefits that correspond to the value they bring to these productions. We have excellent input from all the AFM representatives on our side of the table, with special recognition to AFM Touring/Theatre/Booking Division Director Michael Manley and Contract Administrator George Fiddler, and valuable contributions from Player Representatives Michael Epperhart of Local 802 and Joshua Priest of Locals 802 and 149 (Toronto, ON).

We meet again in November to continue our discussions. I’m confident that in the end we will emerge with a fair contract that provides the security and compensation that these hardworking musicians deserve.