NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Broadway casting directors rallied outside Radio City Music Hall Thursday, calling for a union contract and support from Broadway performers and community members.

Picketing outside rehearsals for the Tony Awards show, casting directors such as Cindy Tolan are looking for a contract and benefits like other workers on Broadway.

“We are creative theatrical artists. We are no different than set designers. We’re no different than costume designers,” she said.

The casting directors are unionized. Tom O’Donnell is the head of Theatrical Teamsters Local 817.

“These people provide a vital creative contribution to the shows, and that they were deserving of basic health care and pension and some elementary job protections,” O’Donnell said.

The Broadway League represents the shows. The league said casting directors are like other vendors – independent contractors – and are free to work on more than one show at a time.

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