Arbitrator rules in favor of SDC

Requires inclusion of League ticketing fee in royalty calculations

An arbitrator has ruled in favor of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society — the legit helmers union that goes by SDC — in a decision that will require the Broadway League to include a $1 TKTS ticket purchase fee in the calculation of royalties for SDC members.

The arbitrator, Marlene Gold, decided that the extra coin from those ticket transactions should be included in calculations of a production’s total B.O. — a change that affects royalties determined as a percentage of sales.

The League fee has been added to every ticket purchased at Gotham’s discount TKTS booth since November 2008. Gold’s ruling stipulated a recalculation of past royalties dating to that time.

“SDC believes it is wrong to collect revenue from ticket buyers and exclude those monies from the gross calculation for the purposes of paying artists,” SDC prexy Karen Azenberg said.

SDC prevailed in a similar tussle with Jujamcyn Theaters in 2000, ultimately requiring the inclusion of the company’s per-ticket theater restoration fee in the determination of royalties. Jujamcyn had initiated the surcharge in 1998.

A rep for the League said the org was not yet certain whether the money from the TKTS fee will also be added to the weekly Broadway grosses released every Monday.

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