Author Topic: assigning Dance Captain  (Read 3048 times)

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prizm

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assigning Dance Captain
« on: Aug 01, 2014, 02:24 am »
OK I've been at this a while and am lost. My producer contacted me today after reading in the report who was assigned Dance Captain by Choreographer. She is honestly the best suited out of the cast but is EMC and not equity yet. The producer thinks the position has to go to an Equity member, I know I have done several shows where the DC or a Fight Captain was non union to save money.
In this case I think the choice was made because she was the best choice and not to save money, obviously the producer wants to have a union member.
The language in the contract says there has to be one, it never says they have to be union.
does anyone know the rule here? Ive already sent the question out to my rep but she is out of town for 5 days and I would like to avoid embarrassment for this girl if I have to take the gig away from her.

Contract is SPT by the way.

loebtmc

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Re: assigning Dance Captain
« Reply #1 on: Aug 01, 2014, 02:40 am »
This is an ongoing bone of contention w the SPT contract - because so often the best person to be the dance (or fight) captain is NOT the AEA member, who is a lead, but the non-Eq player in the ensemble.

Talk w your rep. I've made it so on several shows when it was the more appropriate person for the job. But you need to be able to justify it.

RuthNY

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Re: assigning Dance Captain
« Reply #2 on: Aug 01, 2014, 09:43 am »
As Pat says, talk to your Rep. On the LORT contract, the Dance Captain has to be AEA, while the Fight Captain does not. Your contract may be different.
"Be fair with others, but then keep after them until they're fair with you."
--Alan Alda

MatthewShiner

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Re: assigning Dance Captain
« Reply #3 on: Aug 01, 2014, 12:08 pm »
I have been this case before - what we did was assign an AEA and non-AEA Dance Captain. 

Painful, but works.

I have found that is best to let the producer do the final hiring of a dance captain and/or fight captain (suggest someone to them, based on input for director, choreographer, etc).  Since this is a contractual position with pay attached, you want to make sure the person doing the hiring has a say in it.  I have had dance / fight captains say yes to me, but negotiations with the general manager / producer fall apart - so we had to go on to another choice (most often to wanting more pay for the additional job duties.)

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Anything posted here as in my own personal opinion, and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of my employer - whomever they be at a given moment in time.

loebtmc

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Re: assigning Dance Captain
« Reply #4 on: Aug 01, 2014, 12:17 pm »
On SPT, which includes a ratio of AEA/nonAEA cast, producer doesn't always pay a nonAEA dance or fight captain, so one bone of contention is, are they choosing the nonAEA because they don't have to pay them. But I truly believe the choreo or fight choreo should be the one determining who belongs in that position, esp in shows where the AEA leads may not be dancers at all, or if they are dancers, their rehearsals were at the same time as the ensemble did choreo/blocking, so they never learned it. In mixed casts the best dancers are often the choreo's asst who is cast in the ensemble, or the nonAEA chorus folks who were specifically cast for dance ability. So to me, it is the logical best choice to be dance captain.
« Last Edit: Aug 06, 2014, 07:36 pm by loebtmc »

lsears

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Re: assigning Dance Captain
« Reply #5 on: Aug 04, 2014, 04:32 pm »
This was a big discussion in the NEAT negotiations as well.  We argued for the best person capable to be dance captain, and said if they were EMC that's acceptable as they were making steps to become full AEA members and this would give them a nice addition skill to include on resumes.  How you follow the rules in your contract depends on the reading of your rep and your producer.  If the choreographer has serious concerns they should speak to the producer.

VSM

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Re: assigning Dance Captain
« Reply #6 on: Aug 05, 2014, 11:23 am »
A Union card does not a Dance Captain make...
Ordo ab chao

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RuthNY

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Re: assigning Dance Captain
« Reply #7 on: Aug 06, 2014, 06:54 pm »
And a good dancer does not a Dance Captain make, necessarily.


A Union card does not a Dance Captain make...
"Be fair with others, but then keep after them until they're fair with you."
--Alan Alda

babens

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Re: assigning Dance Captain
« Reply #8 on: Aug 07, 2014, 01:50 am »
And a good dancer does not a Dance Captain make, necessarily.


A Union card does not a Dance Captain make...

Also very true, Ruth.  It definitely takes a special skill set to note problems and/or mistakes and then take the necessary steps to correct them, or to make necessary adjustments when putting in swings and understudies.  Not every dancer has that ability.

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