Artists continue to organize in 2023, as the Dancers of Ballet Austin have signed cards to form a union and join the American Guild of Musical Artists (AGMA).
Griff Braun, AGMA’s National Organizing Director, expressed his excitement about the development, stating, "This is a significant step forward for the Dancers of Ballet Austin as they unite to strengthen their collective voice, for themselves and for the Artists that will follow them."
Ballet Austin was founded in 1956 and is among the country's 15 largest classical ballet companies.
In a letter addressed to the Ballet’s management, the Dancers emphasized their motivation, stating, “Our forming of a union comes from a desire to preserve the things that we value most about Ballet Austin as the company grows and changes. We are proud of our commitment to technical and artistic excellence. We are honored to serve our community by presenting works that inspire, delight, challenge, and educate diverse audiences. We are inspired by being active collaborators in the creative process. We are confident that unionization will help make the positivity and cohesiveness that exists in our workplace stronger and more durable.”
AGMA has officially notified Ballet Austin management with the hopes that the Company will respect its artists’ wishes and voluntarily recognize the Union. The Company has until close of business on December 29 to respond. AGMA will release more information as it becomes available.