Justin Timberlake recently reached a "precedent setting" deal with SAG-AFTRA.
The singer made a deal with the organization to cover the dozen or so dancers on his upcoming 20/20 Experience world tour under the union's touring agreement. According to the folks at Variety, the agreement was previously put together to cover back-up singers for the likes of James Taylor, Reba McIntire, and Martina McBride.
Under the deal, the dancers who join Justin Timberlake on his tour are eligible for health benefits and pensions. The pact reportedly allows for the performers to engage in direct negotiations as well.
SAG-AFTRA president Ken Howard explained:
"This is a wonderful result for SAG-AFTRA members and Justin Timberlake. Justin was very open to signing the agreement and personally making sure the deal got done. As a leading recording artist and actor, Justin's support for his fellow SAG-AFTRA members in unionizing his tour was a key element in concluding this agreement. I thank him for taking the lead."
The Hollywood Reporter explains that this is the first time dancers on a specific tour were covered by the SAG-AFTRA touring agreement. The union's national executive director David White called the arrangement "precedent setting," adding that he was "genuinely excited about this deal."
Assistant national executive director for sound recordings Randy Himes told THR:
"The physical demands of touring are tough on our artist members and those members that tour with them. I applaud the dancers for their dedication to this new agreement and give Justin the credit he richly deserves for stepping up and taking care of his elite dancer group. It's just another reason why Justin continues to be one of the most respected performers in the media entertainment industry."
According to Justin Timberlake's official website, the next stop on his 20/20 Experience tour is at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California on November 26. Unfortunately for fans who are interested in getting tickets, the show is currently sold out.
Billboard recently reported that Justin Timberlake added tour dates in Russia for the very first time. The singer will take a trip to the country in 2014. The singer is presently scheduled to perform in St. Petersburg on May 15 and Moscow on May 17. Tickets went on sale to the general public yesterday (November 23).
Are you a fan of Justin Timberlake and his music? What do you think about the singer's dancers on his 20/20 Experience tour getting assistance from the folks at SAG-AFTRA?