“Early Rumblings in Annual Labor Row”

Artifact Type Sources, Trade Journals
Publication The Film Daily
Volume XLI
Number 6
Page Number 1, 6
Place New York, NY
Publication Date July 8, 1927
Transcript Show/Hide

Headline: “Early Rumblings in Annual Labor Row”

Early rumblings of impending differences between theater owners and musicians, operators and stage hands are beginning to be heard in various sections of the nation. In some centers it is expected that these will develop into a roar before Sept. 1 rolls around when in many sections working agreements between these crafts and theater owners are to expire.

Washington, faced last year with a fight with operators, sees looming impending difficulties with musicians, who are seeking an increase of approximately 27 per cent in the scale. Their demands seek to raise the ante from $67 to $85 weekly. Theater managers met recently and now are preparing to resist the demands, termed out of all proportion to theater owners’ ability to pay.

Kansas City managers, hit by diminishing box office receipts, face a series of conferences on demands of musicians for increases. Their is a range of increases sought in the various houses, with a cutting down of playing time asked.

In Minneapolis and St. Paul, managers are seeking relief from what they say are the high wages being paid the various crafts. They are asking the employes to bear a share of the decreased grosses at the various houses. Committee meetings now are being held and theater owners are stressing that it is imperative that the musicians revert to the 1925 scale, a reduction of about five per cent. A similar reduction is asked of stage hands, while operators are asked to take a ten per cent and all crafts requested to make a nine-month contract instead of the one and two-year agreements heretofore demanded.

Little difficulty is anticipated among the crafts at Cincinnati, where operators last year lost their strike. They returned to work at the old scale after their walkout.

Chicago, Omaha, San Francisco, Detroit and Dallas are among other cities where difficulties with the unions were experienced last year. There v/ere walkouts at Chicago, Omaha and Dallas, while last minute compromises averted strikes in the other cities.

New York theater owners meet July 14 to discuss ways and means to offset “alarming overhead.” Salaries paid the various crafts will be up for discussion, it is understood.

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Citation “Early Rumblings in Annual Labor Row,” The Film Daily, July 8, 1927.
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