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From the President

Marching in Madison

AEA President Nick Wyman

President Nick Wyman
photo credit: newhartphoto.com

By Nick Wyman

March 24, 2011

In what can only be described as union-busting, Wisconsin's Governor Walker last month pushed through legislation stripping state union workers of the right to collective bargaining. [For my views on this subject, see my essay "Which Side Are You On?" click here...

Among the Equity members protesting this was a former castmate of mine, Actors' Equity/Alan Eisenberg Award winner Janine DiVita, who describes her experience:


Janine DiVita

"Sometimes things line up in the best way possible. I am currently on a National Tour, and our schedule brought us to Madison, Wisconsin during the height of the protest against Governor Walker's efforts to strip state union workers of the right to collective bargaining. Upon hearing the news and knowing we were to be right in the heart of the chaos, many actors and stagehands in my cast decided that we wanted to take part in the protests as representatives of our respective unions. The first day I spent in Madison, I could not help but notice the camaraderie among everyone in town. The energy was bustling, surprisingly positive, and nearly every shop, even chain-stores, displayed a sign in support of workers. There were signs all around town with slogans such as "It's not about the money." I kept asking myself, how did these people vote in such an extremist?

"On Wednesday February 23, as a proud member of Actors' Equity, I, along with cast members and stagehands from our show, NYC and Chicago AEA reps, Wisconsin actors and stagehands, marched together to show our support for our unions, for the representation of the worker, and for the fundamental right to democratic communication. We all crammed into the Capitol Building to listen to speakers. Members of the firefighters' union, who are not yet directly affected by the new bill, showed their support by marching through the streets playing their bagpipes.

"We all know how tight budgets are; politics aside, perhaps each side needs to give a little. However, I believe it is undemocratic to make decisions without fair negotiations and humane conversation. In my mind it was the least I could do to show my support for what Wisconsin unions are going through. Whether we want to face it or not, we must stand up for ourselves in times like these because once unions are attacked in one state, it is just a matter of time before our own union is threatened.

"The audiences in Madison were incredibly supportive and you could sense that they all needed a good laugh. It was a wonderful feeling to perform for a community that needed a night to forget the drama in their lives, and this made my job as an actor feel very worthwhile. My time spent in Madison is an experience I will never forget, and I have never been more proud to be a part of Actors' Equity Association-a union that recognizes and protects the dignity of actors. "

Janine DiVita
AEA Member


From the President Archives:

Telling Our Story

Why I Do Theatre

Abundance and Gratitude

When Good Shows Go Bad

Make Your Own Luck

Mentor Up. Mentor Down.

Work Art and "Work"

CashCowasaurus vs. CatchMeasaurus

Can I Get Some Service Here?

Touring 101 or How I Spent My Summer Vacation

Touring 102 - A Look at the Business Model of Touring

Exit, Gracefully, a Champion

Happy 100th Birthday

The Five C's

Love and Boundaries

Plenary Panoply

Which Side Are You On?

March 24, 2011
Marching in Madison

March 1, 2011
A Vision for All of Us

February 2, 2011
Three Requests

December 16, 2010
Earn Your "MBA"

November 4, 2010
Deputize Yourself

September 1, 2010
The Fall of the Twin Tiers

July 27, 2010
Mosaic

June 21, 2010
Thank You

Long-time Councillor Nick Wyman is elected the President of Actors' Equity Association

Back to Presidents Page

Contact President Nick Wyman at president@actorsequity.org.

 

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From the President Archives

To Join or Not to Join? My Rejoinder

Wait ’Til This Year!

Attention Must Be Paid

Beginners, Please

One Voice: 50,058 Strong

Mirroring

Ars Longa, Vita Brevis

One for All, All for One All Over

Springtime for Equity

Resource-Full

Keeping the Faith

Substantive Work

At the Big Table

What in the Heck am I Doing?

Telling Our Story

Why I Do Theatre

You Have a Dream

Abundance and Gratitude

When Good Shows Go Bad

Make Your Own Luck

Mentor Up. Mentor Down.

Mentor Up. Mentor Down.

Work Art and "Work"

CashCowasaurus vs. CatchMeasaurus

Can I Get Some Service Here?

Touring 101 or How I Spent My Summer Vacation

Touring 102 - A Look at the Business Model of Touring

Exit, Gracefully, a Champion

Happy 100th Birthday

The Five C's

Love and Boundaries

Plenary Panoply

Which Side Are You On?

March 24, 2011
Marching in Madison

March 1, 2011
A Vision for All of Us

February 2, 2011
Three Requests

December 16, 2010
Earn Your "MBA"

November 4, 2010
Deputize Yourself

September 1, 2010
The Fall of the Twin Tiers

July 27, 2010
Mosaic

June 21, 2010
Thank You

Long-time Councillor Nick Wyman is elected the President of Actors' Equity Association

Back to Presidents Page

 
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