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Stagehands

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NEWS
January 20, 2013 | BY ANGELO FICHERA, Daily News Staff Writer fichera@phillynews.com, 215-854-5913
B EHIND-THE-SCENES workers from the Philadelphia Theatre Co. took center stage Friday afternoon as they continued their two-day-old strike by protesting in front of the Suzanne Roberts Theatre on South Broad Street. Stagehands who recently unionized, including electricians, carpenters and prop makers, vowed not to return to work until management agreed to a contract with benefits, raises and improved work rules. A temporary contract expired in November. Negotiations fell through earlier this week but resumed Friday.
BUSINESS
January 3, 2008 | By Jane M. Von Bergen INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
In a quick turnaround, union stagehands ratified a three-year contract yesterday that preserves most of their work at the Convention Center while giving customers more flexibility in setting up their equipment. The vote came in the afternoon, barely 12 hours after the union - the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees Local 8 - and Elliott-Lewis Corp., the company that supplies labor at the center, reached an agreement at 1:30 a.m. "This is a gigantic step forward for the building," said James Gentile, vice president of Elliott-Lewis.
BUSINESS
July 8, 2016 | By Jane M. Von Bergen, Staff Writer
With the Democratic National Convention less than three weeks away, both the Pennsylvania Convention Center and the stagehands' union are investigating an alleged overbilling scheme by some of the union's top officers. Michael Barnes, who leads Local 8 of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE), has ousted Anthony Tortorice Sr., vice president of Local 8, and his son, Jonathan Tortorice, the secretary-treasurer, a union source said. Both men have responsibilities for dispatching union members to assignments at the Convention Center.
NEWS
September 2, 2014 | By Jane M. Von Bergen, Inquirer Staff Writer
Nothing stopped stagehand James Pisano, 25, from reporting for work at Made in America for a 5 a.m. call Sunday. Not his Saturday shift, which ended at 3 a.m. Sunday, just two hours before his start time. Not the 90 minutes of a break that he spent in the hospital with not much of an injured wrist. "Stagehands heal fast," he joked, waiting backstage to unload one of seven two-ton tractor trailers packed with gear for Sunday night's headliner, Kings of Leon. Everything about Made in America is big - lots of bands, lots of land, a big crowd, tents, miles of barricades, miles of cable, swarms of workers, many in the trademark black T-shirts and pants that are the mark of the behind-the-scenes crew.
NEWS
January 21, 2013 | By Peter Dobrin, Inquirer Culture Writer
Stagehands for the Philadelphia Theatre Company went on strike Friday just as the theater was readying previews for The Mountaintop , Katori Hall's play based on the "reimagining" of events the night before the assassination of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Friday night's performance was canceled because of the strike. Saturday night, about two dozen stagehands picketed outside the theater, some yelling, "You're crossing a picket line!" to theatergoers as they arrived. The next preview is scheduled for Sunday afternoon.
NEWS
March 8, 2013 | By Robert Moran, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The Philadelphia stagehands union has targeted the Electric Factory with pickets for a week to get better pay and benefits for workers at the popular venue, union officials said. However, union members will be working - sort of - at two sold-out shows Friday and Saturday nights by the Dropkick Murphys as part of a deal reached with the Boston band. It's all about pro-union solidarity, Michael Barnes, business manager of Local 8 of the International Association of Theatrical and Stage Employees, said Thursday.
NEWS
February 3, 2013 | By Peter Dobrin, Inquirer Culture Writer
Stagehands at the Philadelphia Theatre Company ratified their first labor contract Friday, ending a 15-day strike that disrupted the theater's run of The Mountaintop . The 27 members of Local 8 of the International Association of Theatrical and Stage Employees approved a three-year deal that gives them raises and contributions to health and welfare benefits, and commits in a written contract to past labor practices at the Suzanne Roberts Theater...
BUSINESS
September 19, 2002 | By Marcia Gelbart INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Stagehands, who erect concert stages and theater sets throughout the city, are prepared to absorb the trade-show work now being done by carpenters at the Convention Center, the business agent for the stagehands' union said yesterday. "It's about the temporary installation of presentation equipment. The stagehands have been doing that for 110 years," said Michael Barnes of Local 8 of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, which also works at the Convention Center.
NEWS
July 9, 2003 | By Thomas Fitzgerald and Joseph Tanfani INQUIRER STAFF WRITERS
The question of who was to blame for the falling scenery at the National Constitution Center continued to flare yesterday, with the stagehands' union saying its members didn't cause the botched installation that ruined the center's July 4 opening ceremony. Union members said they never saw any blueprints, were never told the structure - two pieces that were supposed to resemble a picture frame - needed to be bolted to the deck, and did not attach the streamers that were supposed to break away when tugged.
NEWS
January 2, 2008 | By Jeff Shields, Inquirer Staff Writer
Negotiations were being held last night to avert a walkout by stagehands at the Convention Center that could jeopardize the first convention of 2008. The union that represents the stagehands has called a strike but said it would not walk out until after the Mummers performances yesterday. A walkout would endanger the relative labor peace that the center has enjoyed since 2003. If other unions honor the stagehands' picket line, the American Baseball Coaches Association meeting, beginning tomorrow, could be affected.
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NEWS
August 20, 2016 | By Jane M. Von Bergen, STAFF WRITER
Members of Local 8 of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) approved penalties levied against two former officers, Anthony Tortorice Sr., vice president of Local 8, and his son, Jonathan Tortorice, the secretary-treasurer, the union's lawyer said. The union met on Thursday. The two were dismissed in June after the Pennsylvania Convention Center and the union itself began an investigation into an alleged overbilling scheme by the some of the union's top officers.
BUSINESS
July 31, 2016 | By Jane M. Von Bergen, Staff Writer
What Democrats? That was so Thursday night. Friday was the big move-in at the Convention Center for Sunday's start of the annual meeting of the American Association of Clinical Chemistry. Dems to Chems, with the Chems due here for five days. The AACC, with 18,500 attendees, is the second-largest show booked for the whole year, just behind the DNC. The group's leaders had to agree to push back their gathering, originally scheduled for last week, so the city could accommodate the Democratic National Convention, now being dismantled around town.
BUSINESS
July 8, 2016 | By Jane M. Von Bergen, Staff Writer
With the Democratic National Convention less than three weeks away, both the Pennsylvania Convention Center and the stagehands' union are investigating an alleged overbilling scheme by some of the union's top officers. Michael Barnes, who leads Local 8 of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE), has ousted Anthony Tortorice Sr., vice president of Local 8, and his son, Jonathan Tortorice, the secretary-treasurer, a union source said. Both men have responsibilities for dispatching union members to assignments at the Convention Center.
NEWS
April 18, 2015 | By Suzette Parmley, Inquirer Staff Writer
ATLANTIC CITY - A stagehand died this week after falling while working on a concert venue at the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa. Tony Haines, 61, of Atlantic City, died Sunday after falling off the top-level bleacher section of the Event Center at Borgata. Sources say he was tearing up a set with elevated seating for the headliner act the night before, the comedian Jerry Seinfeld, when he fell about 12 feet to the ground. The show was sold out, so bleacher seating was needed. It remained unclear why Haines lost his balance.
NEWS
September 3, 2014 | By Jane M. Von Bergen, Inquirer Staff Writer
By the time Labor Day dawned, steamy and soggy on the Made in America concert site on the Parkway, union stagehand Colin Peters and his overnight crew had just about wrapped up dismantling the three miles of barricades. The concertgoers, soaked by Sunday night's rainstorm, had long gone, and Peters and his crew packed up and shipped out two of the four stages, even as headliner Kings of Leon finished up on the main stage. The barricades came down next, mostly in miserable conditions.
NEWS
September 2, 2014 | By Jane M. Von Bergen, Inquirer Staff Writer
Nothing stopped stagehand James Pisano, 25, from reporting for work at Made in America for a 5 a.m. call Sunday. Not his Saturday shift, which ended at 3 a.m. Sunday, just two hours before his start time. Not the 90 minutes of a break that he spent in the hospital with not much of an injured wrist. "Stagehands heal fast," he joked, waiting backstage to unload one of seven two-ton tractor trailers packed with gear for Sunday night's headliner, Kings of Leon. Everything about Made in America is big - lots of bands, lots of land, a big crowd, tents, miles of barricades, miles of cable, swarms of workers, many in the trademark black T-shirts and pants that are the mark of the behind-the-scenes crew.
NEWS
October 4, 2013 | By Peter Dobrin, Inquirer Music Critic
A stagehand strike has forced the cancellation of Carnegie Hall's Wednesday night black-tie gala season-opener, at which the Philadelphia Orchestra was to have been the featured ensemble. The stagehands, represented by Local One of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, were working under a contract that expired Aug. 31, and called a strike at 8 a.m., according to a union statement. "Carnegie Hall sincerely regrets any inconvenience this strike will cause our artists, concertgoers, and everyone with whom we work," said Clive Gillinson, executive and artistic Director of Carnegie Hall.
NEWS
March 9, 2013
Despite a weeklong picketing effort at the Electric Factory, members of the Philadelphia stagehands union will work at two sold-out shows Friday and Saturday by the Dropkick Murphys as part of a deal reached with the Boston band. The band will pay two union members to unload its equipment outside the venue at 421 N. Seventh St., said Michael Barnes, business manager of Local 8 of the International Association of Theatrical and Stage Employees. Stagehands working for Electric Factory will handle the equipment inside the building.
NEWS
March 8, 2013 | By Robert Moran, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The Philadelphia stagehands union has targeted the Electric Factory with pickets for a week to get better pay and benefits for workers at the popular venue, union officials said. However, union members will be working - sort of - at two sold-out shows Friday and Saturday nights by the Dropkick Murphys as part of a deal reached with the Boston band. It's all about pro-union solidarity, Michael Barnes, business manager of Local 8 of the International Association of Theatrical and Stage Employees, said Thursday.
NEWS
February 3, 2013 | By Peter Dobrin, Inquirer Culture Writer
Stagehands at the Philadelphia Theatre Company ratified their first labor contract Friday, ending a 15-day strike that disrupted the theater's run of The Mountaintop . The 27 members of Local 8 of the International Association of Theatrical and Stage Employees approved a three-year deal that gives them raises and contributions to health and welfare benefits, and commits in a written contract to past labor practices at the Suzanne Roberts Theater...
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