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Metropolitan Opera lockout postponed three days, contract talks to continue

By Kyle Johnson,

The Metropolitan Opera management is holding off on locking out union employees for three more days as requested by federal mediators while talks continue.

The contracts of all but one of the 16 unions at the Met were set to expire Thursday night at midnight and management threatened a lockout as a last resort as talks of a new deal stalled.

With just half a day to go before the lockout would take effect, the chorus and orchestra unions agreed to the bringing in of a mediator as a way to try and get a deal hammered out.

According to NY1, three smaller unions managed to agree on a new deal, but overall the larger unions aren't interested in acquiescing to the demands of management, who are seeking a 17 percent pay cut from workers.

The Met has been suffering from lower ticket sales and increasing operating costs, but the unions say that instead of cuts to their salary, management should be looking into ways to eliminate overspending and waste.

Orchestra musicians union Local 802 President Tino Gagliardi said, "I'm hoping that over the next couple of days we can bridge the gap, we can make that gap smaller, so that we can actually bargain a deal that's going to be fair and respectful to the performers and the stagecraft people."

 
 

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