As the final preparations are being made for tonight’s London 2012 Olympic opening ceremony – which is expected to be watched by a global audience of close to 1 billion people – an ongoing dispute between the Olympic organizing committee LOCOG and the U.K. Musicians’ Union is heating up.

The row relates to an agreement brokered between national Trade Union Congress (TUC), the Musicians’ Union (MU) and the London Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG), whereby LOCOG agreed that all professional musicians performing as part of London 2012 would receive fair payment for their work. Volunteer musicians (e.g. amateur artists) and headline acts were exempt from the deal.

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