Last Month at the Local

Last month we worked with Michael Manley of the AFM's Touring Department to secure a contract for the Il Volo performance at the American Airlines Arena.

Il Volo has been touring the country and hiring a 56-piece local orchestra to back them. The act probably has revenue of $1 million per performance (some seats were $1,000 each!), so budgeting $40-50,000 for an orchestra should not be a stretch. Indeed, in cities such as Chicago, musicians received $465 in base wages plus 12 percent pension contributions, all under an AFM agreement. However, when the tour came to Miami, they had no intention of filing a contract or paying scale wages. When we initially contacted the contractor, they balked at paying more than $300 per musician ($220 less than the Chicago engagement!) and were asking for waivers of our wage scales. However, we were able to secure an AFM contract for the engagement at Local 655 scales and are in the process of collecting the pension due. If you played the engagement and did not receive AFM scales (including cartage, doubling, travel, etc.) please let us know. The moral of the story is, if we don't ask to be paid fairly, and we don't stand up for ourselves, we are likely to be short-changed. Together, we can make sure that does not happen.


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