A tentative deal was reached on Thursday between the union representing 1,500 stagehands and other backstage workers and Broadway producers, theater owners and operators to avert a strike that could have shut down shows in New York and touring shows across the country as soon Friday. The deal was announced jointly by the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) and management, made up of the Broadway League, the industry’s trade group, and Disney Theatrical. IATSE had been in the process of conducting a strike vote among its 1,500 members when negotiators reached the deal, details of which were not yet available. A strike would have shut down performances of 28 shows in New York City and 17 shows that are touring across the United States and Canada. The tentative agreement will need to be ratified by rank-and-file members before it can go into effect and end the risk of a strike. However, in recent years some unions have seen members vote against ratifying recommended deals and even force a strike. The deal was reached shortly after the strike authorization vote and the Friday strike deadline were announced by IATSE late Wednesday. Those moves by union put pressure on management. Many union labor negotiations include a strike authorization vote, even if a deal is usually reached without a strike. Still, it is rare that a strike vote is held just hours before the start of a possible strike. Typically they take place weeks or months before a strike deadline, allowing for further talks before union members walk out. While details of Thursday’s tentative agreement were not known, the union’s Wednesday statement said that they had already reached tentative agreements to protect employer-provided health care without cuts or increased out-of-pocket costs and to secure employer-provided housing for touring crews for the first time. But the union said the two sides remained far apart on other union priorities, including increased salaries and reasonable weekly and daily rest periods. A Broadway strike would have been a blow to the New York City economy, which is still suffering from the shift from in-office work to people working from home. Tourism is a major driver of the city’s economy, and Broadway is a significant magnet for those tourists. The Broadway League reported that in the season that concluded in May, the first full season since Broadway shows were disrupted by the pandemic, theaters reached a total attendance of 12.3 million and grossed $1.6 billion in ticket sales. A summer of strikes The strike threat came as 160,000 actors who are represented by SAG-AFTRA, as well as 11,000 members of the Writers Guild of America, are already on strike against major film studios and streaming services, shutting down most of the movie and television shows in production nationwide. And beyond the world of entertainment there are a large number of other unionized workers threatening to go on strike. The Teamsters union, which represents 340,000 members at UPS\n \n (UPS), said it will go on strike against the package delivery giant on August 1 if there’s no deal on a new contract. Management and the union just agreed to return to the negotiating table next week after talks broke down in the early hours of July 5. That would be the largest strike against a single employer in US history. The nation’s three unionized automakers — General Motors\n \n (GM), Ford\n \n (F) and Stellantis, which makes cars under the Chrysler, Dodge, Ram and Jeep brands — are also facing mid-September strike deadlines with the United Auto Workers union, and talks are off to a contentious start. Additionally, about 15,000 hotel workers in Los Angeles and Orange counties, who went on strike against 65 hotels over the July 4 holiday weekend, are threatening a new round of walkouts following what the union said is a lack of progress at the negotiating table.