NEW YORK (AP) _ City officials in New York say it's too early to
estimate the economic impact of a strike by Broadway stagehands.
The strike enters its second day today, with stagehands
picketing over failed contract negotiations with producers. The
walkout has shuttered more than two dozen shows, forcing would-be
theatergoers to find something else to do.
Much of the disagreement involves work rules and staffing
requirements, particularly rules governing the expensive process of
setting up a show. Producers want more flexibility in hiring. Their
spokeswoman says all they want is to pay for workers they need and
for work that is actually performed.
The stagehands don't want to give up benefits without getting
something in return.
Among the disappointed patrons are Wanda Antonetti and her
daughter Sherry. The arrived in New York from Pennsylvania and
Delaware Saturday to celebrate Antonetti's 70th birthday and didn't
find out about the strike until they got to the theater. Says,
Antonetti: ``We came a long way for lunch.''