Five New York City theatre companies signed contracts with Actors Equity Association to maintain their Letter of Agreement (LOA) status, effective Aug. 15.
The renewals at Blue Light, Manhattan Class Company (MCC), Primary Stages, Signature Theatre Company, and Vineyard Theatre establish minimum salaries, ranging from $230 to $330 per week, for stage managers and actors appearing in the companies' productions. In addition, the agreements will provide the actors and stage managers with full pension and health benefits.
Currently, Equity makes LOA contracts available to about 20 not-for-profit theatres in New York City. According to the union, the recent renewals will create nearly 1,700 workweeks for its members. In addition, Equity authorized Blue Light, MCC, and Vineyard to produce paid staged readings.
Although the five theatres all signed on the same day, Equity negotiates all LOA contracts individually. To qualify, theatre companies must be not-for-profit, produce a minimum of two shows per season (with a maximum of seven performances over six days, with a guarantee of four weeks), and hold principal auditions for each production. Salaries are based on the individual budgets of the theatres.