Jump to content
abatt

Finlay Resigns, Catazaro and Ramasar Suspended -- Update: Catazaro and Ramasar Fired

Recommended Posts

29 minutes ago, abatt said:

Doubtful.  If anything, prices may go up because donations may go way down.  They better start programming All Balanchine All The Time.

Since we have a President who bragged on tape that he can grab women by the you know what and get away with it, the subject incident at NYCB speaks to the coarseness of our times.  Voters didn't care, and maybe the audiences for NYCB won't care either.

Wow Brilliant!!!! I just realized this. Amazing!

ABATT = All Balanchine All The Time

 

 

Share this post


Link to post

In articles 57-61 of the complaint, it is indicated that the men (Ramasar is named) to whom Finlay’s revenge porn images were sent WERE aware this was being done without Waterbury’s consent, and that they also knew she would be distressed to learn such images existed and were being shared. It is also indicated these men sent images in return which were also acknowledged as being shared/captured without their subjects’ consent (Ramasar acknowledges the subjects would be “pissed”). At least one such image was taken non-consensually of a dancer at work, while changing. 

To me this goes far beyond “describing sexual wishes” and “image-sharing”, and indicates that Ramasar and co knew they were receiving and/or sharing revenge porn with Finlay. 

It’s also worth noting that all the victims are described as being lower in company rank than the perpetrators—it sounds like these men knew who the company would let them get away with abusing. 

Share this post


Link to post

I read all the articles and the complaint. Appalling and disgusting only begin to describe this ugly behavior.  There are many valuable comments here and  I gave up trying to quote all the ones I agreed with!  Finlay is so disrespectful to women, indeed it seems as if he hates them.  He is  so adolescent and stupid that it's difficult to imagine he only started acting this way because NYCB  "gave him permission" to do so.  I don't know how much the environment there is responsible for how these dancers operate.  Certainly the organization can't control what dancers do or say on their personal time.  I  noticed almost immediately that the donor was not named anywhere. That's infuriating, and does not look good for the board.  Also, maybe it's not relevant, but the  inconsistencies and quality of writing in the complaint were questionable.  I don't know what the solution is.   I will continue to attend performances because these horrible people don't represent the company.  The board is not the company.  The dancers are!  

Share this post


Link to post
24 minutes ago, MarzipanShepherdess said:

In articles 57-61 of the complaint, it is indicated that the men (Ramasar is named) to whom Finlay’s revenge porn images were sent WERE aware this was being done without Waterbury’s consent, and that they also knew she would be distressed to learn such images existed and were being shared. It is also indicated these men sent images in return which were also acknowledged as being shared/captured without their subjects’ consent (Ramasar acknowledges the subjects would be “pissed”). At least one such image was taken non-consensually of a dancer at work, while changing. 

To me this goes far beyond “describing sexual wishes” and “image-sharing”, and indicates that Ramasar and co knew they were receiving and/or sharing revenge porn with Finlay. 

It’s also worth noting that all the victims are described as being lower in company rank than the perpetrators—it sounds like these men knew who the company would let them get away with abusing. 

4

The "pissed" quote is actually attributed to Finlay:

"There are text messages between Mr. Finlay and Ballet Principal. Mr. Ramasar, during which Mr. Finlay acknowledges that these women who were unknowingly and unlawfully photographed "might be a little pissed" because they were "taking it to the level of showing each other pictures of other women."

But it does implicate Ramasar as the recipient of photos taken without the subject's consent.

And I don't know what to make of this sentence, which follows the bit where Craig Hall says he wants to masturbate to images of Waterbury:

"In response, an image of a soloist at NYC Ballet was circulated while she was changing when she was not looking at the camera"

This is so vague. Who took this image? Who circulated this image? Craig Hall? Finlay? It's not linked to Ramasar (at least in the way I read this poorly written complaint).

Edited by fondoffouettes

Share this post


Link to post
3 minutes ago, fondoffouettes said:

E The "pissed" quote is actually attributed to Finlay:

"There are text messages between Mr. Finlay and Ballet Principal. Mr. Ramasar, during which Mr. Finlay acknowledges that these women who were unknowingly and unlawfully photographed "might be a little pissed" because they were "taking it to the level of showing each other pictures of other women."

But it does implicate Ramasar as the recipient of photos taken without the subject's consent.

 

Yes you are right that Finlay, not Ramasar, said the women would be “pissed”—I misread squinting at the complaint on my tiny phone screen! 

It is certainly a very poorly written complaint, which makes it difficult to have all the clarity one would wish for given the seriousness of the subject. However, if Ramasar was told by Finlay the subjects would be upset about he and Finlay (and others) sharing the images, I do think that indicates they both knew what they were doing was wrong. 

At this point, I’ve decided to write a letter stating that my husband and I will not be attending any performances (even those for which we already have tickets), or making further donations, until City Ballet takes meaningful steps to address their ongoing sexual harassment problem. We are also going to request to withdraw our fall gala donation. Reading this thread has helped me decide that this feels like the right course of action for us to take. I really appreciate being able to read the many thoughtful responses here, from the variety of viewpoints they represent. 

Share this post


Link to post

For the record, the 2017 NYC revenge porn law refers to distributing or threatening to distribute intimate images without the permission of the subject with the intent to cause harm.  This largely refers to photos or videos taken with the permission of the subject, or photos the subject sent to a partner. It was already illegal to spread videos of someone engaged in a sexual act if the video was made without their knowledge or permission. There is no “intent to cause harm” clause. At least with revenge porn the subject knows the photos or videos exist and is no longer in a relationship with the jerk who shares them. What Finlay did was such a violation of trust—he did this to someone while they were in a relationship. 

Share this post


Link to post
6 hours ago, Fleurfairy said:

It would seem that Alexa Maxwell was also complicit given she was a recipient of photos of Waterbury. Dark days for City Ballet. 

I'm still puzzled. I didn't see this in the report. Maxwell's name was invoked in variously salacious ways in the emails or text messages.  The fact that in the message where Finlay offers to "share" Ms. Waterbury with Mr. Ramasar and Ms. Maxwell, Finlay immediately goes on to make an unpleasant remark about Maxwell, could indeed be interpreted as showing he did NOT think he was communicating with Maxwell, but only with Ramasar.  (I have no idea what went down, but am just not convinced that there is evidence Maxwell is "complicit.") [Edited hours later to add Wonderwall suggested below--convincingly to me--that I misread this section of document: I still don't think it's fair to make any pronouncements about Maxwell based on it.]

I worry about giving way to "pearl clutching," an expression I learned years ago from dirac on this very website, but I'm pretty revolted by the whole thing. And pretty skeptical that the current leadership (including the board) isn't part of the problem.

Edited by Drew

Share this post


Link to post

Based on my reading of the complaint, I think it is unfair to state that Alexa Maxwell was definitively complicit.  I think what is stated on page 13 article 61 regarding the matter is unclear.

Share this post


Link to post

Right now, New York City Ballet makes ABT look very good in comparison, which I find as disturbing as all the other nightmarish things that are tearing  our country and culture and entire planet to shreds.  

Share this post


Link to post
13 minutes ago, Longtimelurker said:

It is not difficult to discern who the so-called “donor” is through social media posting.  

If this is the case, by site policy, this must be backed up by citing specific social media that makes it clear and specific.

The only official news about the donor is in the complaint, no. 37, which describes the donor as having hosted parties where "excessive alcohol" had been served and how, at one, he was so inebriated he had to have a microphone taken away.

Share this post


Link to post

I am pretty sure the "put up with Alex" in #61 is referring to Alexandra Waterbury and not Alexa Maxwell based on Finlay saying it, and the "referring to the fact that she was 19 years-old" would fit with Alexandra's age at that time. I don't think Finlay's comment about sharing Alexandra with Amar and Alexa was about giving photos to both of them but rather was more of a vulgar statement regarding sexually passing around his girlfriend (Alexandra)--or at least that is how I read it. 

Very disappointing all around.

Edited by wonderwall

Share this post


Link to post
6 minutes ago, wonderwall said:

I am pretty sure the "put up with Alex" in #61 is referring to Alexandra Waterbury and not Alexa Maxwell based on Finlay saying it, and the "referring to the fact that she was 19 years-old" would fit with Alexandra's age at that time. I don't think the sharing Alexandra with Amar and Alexa comment from Finlay was about giving photos to both of them but rather was more of a vulgar statement regarding sexually passing around his girlfriend (Alexandra)--or at least that is how I read it.

Very disappointing all around.

That all makes sense. (I did and do read this as an exchange--and not an edifying one--between the two men. Presumably if the lawsuit goes through, then more will come out about ... well... who knows?)

 

Share this post


Link to post

This is so much more disgusting than I could have imagined. And to think City Ballet knew of these allegations back in June, but only chose to dismiss Chase and suspend Ramasar and Catazaro (just for a season!) after reading the complaint days before it filed. I'm honestly shocked and incredibly disappointed in the leadership. And I feel so much for all of the female dancers.

Share this post


Link to post
10 hours ago, FPF said:

I hope they select a female AD.

 

I hope they select the best AD, and I'm not too concerned about that AD's gender. From the accounts I've heard, Jon Stafford and his team are a pleasure to work with and the workplace environment has been much more positive and relaxed than it was in Peter's days, at least before this incident broke. Poor married-to-a-man Craig Hall, doomed to be confused with the other married-to-a-woman Craig Hall as this unspools.

I'm also a bit concerned about the New York Times' report that the woman's lawyer "contacted City Ballet “to try to negotiate a payment from the company to settle the matter to avoid adverse publicity” but the company had “refused the demand.”

So if she'd received a payoff none of this would have gone public?  Hmmm. 

To me, it looks like Finlay was a problem and has been a problem for awhile. Why didn't they get rid of him? Union reasons, ADA (it was alleged in the lawsuit that he had substance problems, which are a disability), a desperate lack of male principals, or something else? He seems to have been the instigator in this ugly circle of picture-trading, although we clearly don't know the full story with so many dancers unnamed in the complaint.

If the woman's evidence is solid, she could have charged Finlay with a crime, or multiple crimes.

But instead she went to his employer (not her employer) and asked for money. When his employer refused, she and her lawyer released an incendiary (and according to the posters above) poorly-written document. 

Edited by KayDenmark
Grammar fix

Share this post


Link to post

During graduate school, I remember reading a few ethnographic studies on male sports teams regarding gender norms, masculinity, etc. One of the interesting observations made was that male teams in sports typically viewed as a "softer" or "more feminine" often had cultures that endorsed toxic masculinity (I remember a particularly shocking one about a male volleyball team, but interesting nonetheless). Of course, ballet is not a gendered team sport in the traditional sense, but reading through this, it makes me wonder whether their profession causes some male dancers to feel the need to overtly demonstrate macho masculinity/womanizing behavior (compensating in some way). While ballet is already entrenched in gendered roles/power structures, it is just interesting food for thought.

I watched this after reading this thread and thought it was very interesting--especially 2:52 through the end.

 

Edited by wonderwall

Share this post


Link to post
29 minutes ago, Emma said:

This is so much more disgusting than I could have imagined. And to think City Ballet knew of these allegations back in June, but only chose to dismiss Chase and suspend Ramasar and Catazaro (just for a season!) after reading the complaint days before it filed. I'm honestly shocked and incredibly disappointed in the leadership. And I feel so much for all of the female dancers.

The chairman of the company said they started an investigation when they were made aware of the allegations and took action after the investigation had concluded. One could argue that the action they took wasn’t severe enough but I think that conducting a thorough investigation based on an allegation was the most reasonable course.

 

Share this post


Link to post
2 hours ago, Emma said:

This is so much more disgusting than I could have imagined. And to think City Ballet knew of these allegations back in June, but only chose to dismiss Chase and suspend Ramasar and Catazaro (just for a season!) after reading the complaint days before it filed. I'm honestly shocked and incredibly disappointed in the leadership. And I feel so much for all of the female dancers.

NYCB did not dismiss Finlay: he resigned when NYCB approached him with Waterbury's complaint.  The former is documented in all of the articles cited above, and the latter was in the latest NYT article.

Share this post


Link to post
2 hours ago, KayDenmark said:

I'm also a bit concerned about the New York Times' report that the woman's lawyer "contacted City Ballet “to try to negotiate a payment from the company to settle the matter to avoid adverse publicity” but the company had “refused the demand.”

So if she'd received a payoff none of this would have gone public?  Hmmm. 

This isn't a 'hmmm,' at least not to someone who has viewed several EEO complaints (I am certainly not saying this particular case made it to the EEO, however) - there's often a 'OK, if we give you THIS much [could be financial, could be something else], you'll go away after we meet your demands & won't file suit & will sign an NDA and won't talk' agreement. I think complainants generally want to get this stuff over with & aren't gunning for the courts - at least in my experience. Can you really blame them? Look how this society treats victims of sexual assault. It's all nice & well to say "Well, the complainant should die on their sword!", but that's not really fair, is it? It's perhaps not the most 'morally pure' thing to say "I'll take money to have this chapter in my life ended and won't talk about it publicly," but it's understandable, I think. My best friend filed a suit against her former employer with our state labor board & set out the terms - none of which were financial, or caused her any benefit - but I'm quite sure she could've asked for XYZ payment from her employer to "settle the matter to avoid adverse publicity" (especially if she'd signed an NDA) and the company would've CHEERFULLY have done it. I know they've offered in previous cases they've had. At this point, she's very free to talk to potential employees about her experience, should she wish to. 

The difference between her case & this NYCB shakeup is that no one cares about some random tech startup, whereas the NYCB is covered in the NYT. One male principal resigning rather suddenly + 2 on "probation" is a much different matter than "Shakeup at a tech startup you've never heard of in a city you've probably never heard of!" 

Share this post


Link to post
3 hours ago, KayDenmark said:

I hope they select the best AD, and I'm not too concerned about that AD's gender. From the accounts I've heard, Jon Stafford and his team are a pleasure to work with and the workplace environment has been much more positive and relaxed than it was in Peter's days, at least before this incident broke. Poor married-to-a-man Craig Hall, doomed to be confused with the other married-to-a-woman Craig Hall as this unspools.

I'm also a bit concerned about the New York Times' report that the woman's lawyer "contacted City Ballet “to try to negotiate a payment from the company to settle the matter to avoid adverse publicity” but the company had “refused the demand.”

So if she'd received a payoff none of this would have gone public?  Hmmm. 

To me, it looks like Finlay was a problem and has been a problem for awhile. Why didn't they get rid of him? Union reasons, ADA (it was alleged in the lawsuit that he had substance problems, which are a disability), a desperate lack of male principals, or something else? He seems to have been the instigator in this ugly circle of picture-trading, although we clearly don't know the full story with so many dancers unnamed in the complaint.

If the woman's evidence is solid, she could have charged Finlay with a crime, or multiple crimes.

But instead she went to his employer (not her employer) and asked for money. When his employer refused, she and her lawyer released an incendiary (and according to the posters above) poorly-written document. 

L'historie just posted as I was finishing typing this. I'll go ahead and post anyway. But I think we have some related points.

If Waterbury has a right to sue--and by all indications she does--then why shouldn't she? and why wouldn't she? Likewise when it comes to reaching a financial agreement or "payoff" as you write. The fact is that if big organizations and, for that matter, individuals, don't suffer economical consequences--or face the possibility of suffering economical consequences--in situations like this, then they don't often change. I can think of few organizations in the world that I want to flourish more than New York City Ballet, but not at any and all moral costs.  Perhaps they did everything by the book and properly and bear no responsibility in this case...that seems to be their position. Well, then, let her sue...if she doesn't have evidence her suit may be thrown out of court. Even if she does have some evidence, then she--or rather her lawyer--has to convince a jury. (Criminal cases are also in some ways harder to prove than civil cases which is another reason to go the civil route.  And I don't think it's better for someone found guilty of these kinds of crimes to end up in prison than to end up in the poorhouse due to a lawsuit. That is, I assume Finlay would prefer not to face criminal charges.) 

And the hint that any of this publicity is somehow no big deal for her just doesn't seem likely to me. According to press reports, she already has faced vilification for making her original complaint to the company. (The article even suggested she had received threats though I found the language of the threats quoted sounded more like virulent insults--which I guess may well feel pretty threatening.)

It's very common for women who bring accusations, in turn, to be accused of "just being in it for the money." I daresay some are, but I wouldn't automatically insinuate (or assume) that to be the case every time or even most times someone looks for financial damages. And I think it's unfair to do so. Sure we need to hear Finlay's side of the story to come to any real judgment -- and maybe that of some others as well. But if some portion of what Waterbury is saying is true, then she has been treated very badly and should use every tool at her disposal (that she wishes to use) to get some kind of justice and peace.

 

Edited by Drew

Share this post


Link to post
8 hours ago, FPF said:

My guess is that if the NYCB lawyers thought that there was a serious case against the company, they would have settled.

If true, talk about bad advice! The negative publicity from this is "costlier" than any settlement would have been.

Share this post


Link to post
1 hour ago, Drew said:

If Waterbury has a right to sue--and by all indications she does--then why shouldn't she? and why wouldn't she? Likewise when it comes to reaching a financial agreement or "payoff" as you write. The fact is that if big organizations and, for that matter, individuals, don't suffer economical consequences--or face the possibility of suffering economical consequences--in situations like this, then they don't often change. 

I want to re-emphasize everything that Drew has drawn out, and also note that negotiated settlements can also include provisions on injunctive relief — which could include assurance that a behavior will no longer be tolerated or that it will be addressed. Indeed, Waterbury’s complaint requests a remedy of injunctive relief.

Share this post


Link to post
4 hours ago, wonderwall said:

During graduate school, I remember reading a few ethnographic studies on male sports teams regarding gender norms, masculinity, etc. One of the interesting observations made was that male teams in sports typically viewed as a "softer" or "more feminine" often had cultures that endorsed toxic masculinity (I remember a particularly shocking one about a male volleyball team, but interesting nonetheless). Of course, ballet is not a gendered team sport in the traditional sense, but reading through this, it makes me wonder whether their profession causes some male dancers to feel the need to overtly demonstrate macho masculinity/womanizing behavior (compensating in some way). While ballet is already entrenched in gendered roles/power structures, it is just interesting food for thought.

I watched this after reading this thread and thought it was very interesting--especially 2:52 through the end.

 

"We have each other's back" -Chase&Amar😒

Share this post


Link to post
11 hours ago, MarzipanShepherdess said:

In articles 57-61 of the complaint, it is indicated that the men (Ramasar is named) to whom Finlay’s revenge porn images were sent WERE aware this was being done without Waterbury’s consent, and that they also knew she would be distressed to learn such images existed and were being shared. It is also indicated these men sent images in return which were also acknowledged as being shared/captured without their subjects’ consent (Ramasar acknowledges the subjects would be “pissed”). At least one such image was taken non-consensually of a dancer at work, while changing. 

To me this goes far beyond “describing sexual wishes” and “image-sharing”, and indicates that Ramasar and co knew they were receiving and/or sharing revenge porn with Finlay. 

It’s also worth noting that all the victims are described as being lower in company rank than the perpetrators—it sounds like these men knew who the company would let them get away with abusing. 

 

Whether or not a legal complaint is truly founded is questionable. Clearly morally and ethically the behaviors are troublesome and they do degrade the NYCB brand. 

It all distracts from the mission of the organization substantially and it is sorted, crass, and classless.  

Share this post


Link to post
3 hours ago, l'histoire said:

My best friend filed a suit against her former employer with our state labor board & set out the terms - none of which were financial, or caused her any benefit - but I'm quite sure she could've asked for XYZ payment from her employer to "settle the matter to avoid adverse publicity" (especially if she'd signed an NDA) and the company would've CHEERFULLY have done it.

I understand why your friend might want to file suit against her employer. But the NYCB is not Alexandra Waterbury's employer - only the employer of her former romantic partner.

Although I am not a lawyer, it seems to me that when it comes to Miss Waterbury's situation, what's material here is the extent to which NYCB (in particular, the management and board) knew about Finlay's and Ramasar's reprehensible behavior towards her (as well as that of the unnamed dancers toward her) and condoned it. It might also be material how much of it took place on NYCB premises or other work-related premises or took place on NYCB-provided devices, if dancers have access to such a thing. Otherwise we're talking about bad behavior on the dancers' own devices and own time. Is that their employers' responsibility?

Of course, if some of the other female dancers (which the suit says are employed by the NYCB) decide to join this suit or file their own, then there's a much stronger case for a hostile workplace, and that is certainly NYCB's responsibility.

3 hours ago, Drew said:

ikewise when it comes to reaching a financial agreement or "payoff" as you write. The fact is that if big organizations and, for that matter, individuals, don't suffer economical consequences--or face the possibility of suffering economical consequences--in situations like this, then they don't often change.

Would NYCB have been just as motivated to change if Miss Waterbury had been given a private settlement?  

---

EDIT: Just to clarify, I agree what Chase Finlay (allegedly) did sounds awful, and the fact that he pre-emptively resigned from his job suggests that he knows he is in trouble. I also agree that the events described in the lawsuit are completely unacceptable and that NYCB should take a strong and clear stance against sexual harassment.

I'm just not sure that cutting a large check to Miss Waterbury (and her lawyer) is the best way to accomplish this. 

Edited by KayDenmark

Share this post


Link to post
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...