Happy Labor Day. Now what the heck is it?

When I was a young pup, I thought Labor Day was code for National Barbeque-Where-Your-Extended-Family-Gets-Drunk-and-Falls-in-the-Pool Day.

But surprise, surprise, Uncle Johnny, it’s not that.

It’s also not National End-of-Summer Day, or even National Back-to-School Day.

And sorry, Moms, it’s not a day honoring you for giving birth (although, I think you all need, like, three weeks off for that one).

It’s Labor Day, a day the Department of Labor defines as “a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.”

I’d like to take today’s post to recognize the contributions our industry’s workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of Broadway and beyond.

Everyone knows we’ve got some pretty powerful unions that provide us with the labor we need to produce and develop shows.  And why shouldn’t they be powerful?  They represent the best the world has to offer in terms of technical and creative theatrical skills.

And while it may be easy to throw stones at the unions for some of our industry’s issues, it’s important to remember why unions were born in the first place . . . to further one of the basic principles our country was founded on:  checks and balances.

So today, when you’re biting into a burger, or when your uncle has one too many Zimas and belly-flops into the deep end, remember that we’re all in this together.

And only together can we ensure that we’ve all got good jobs for many Labor Days to come.

Can it be festival time already? It is!

I hate winter.

I keep saying that every year I’m going to circulate a petition to try and get Broadway to move to the West Coast or West Figi or someplace like that.  I want to sing, “It’s Too Darn Hot!” all year long and mean it.

To make me feel better, all winter long I look for signs of the upcoming Spring and Summer . . . anything that helps me through a winter in the city (and I’m from Massachusetts – you’d think I could deal with this).

For example, as soon as we hit the winter solstice on 12/21 or 22, which traditionally marks the first day of winter, I usually spin it to say, “The days start getting longer tomorrow . . . spring is right around the corner!”

Ok, sorry to sidetrack you with my psyche . . . but the point is that one of these “Summer Signs” is the announcement that the spring/summer/fall festivals are now accepting submissions.

And guess what?

Applications are currently being accepted for the following NY Festivals:

If you’re a writer/producer/etc, now is the time to get your materials in order.  The deadlines are always sooner than you think.

Don’t have a show?  Find one.  Write one.  Make one up.  That’s what these guys did, and it worked out for them.  The Broadway show didn’t work.

But last I heard they were writing a sitcom.

So get a show submitted and get something up. You never know what’ll happen as a result.

On the other hand, I can guarantee you what will happen if you do nothing.