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

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There is a conflict in the two reports: the Daily News writes that one of the exchanges was between Finlay and and donor, while Gothamist describes the same exchange as among three male dancers.  Also the Daily News says that the photos and videos were distributed to more types of people than Gothamist.  I wonder if they were reading the same source material.

If what is in the suit is substantiated, I think the slap-on-the-wrist suspensions to Ramasar (at least) is going to be Exhibit [x] for how seriously (NOT) the Company addresses these issues and that NYCB administration and board are about to be in a world of hurt.

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My sympathies to Miss Waterbury.

It is dificult to imagine how Ramasar and Catazaro could return from their suspensions once all the sordid details have been revealed in court. They would be a constant reminder of how "everything is (not) beautiful at the ballet."

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I personally would have no trouble still seeing Ramasar's beauty. 

This is just depressing, though. Arts organizations are on shaky enough ground already, they can't afford to be fighting lawsuits like this, and neither can they afford to lose top talent. 

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The first sentence of the Gothamist article indicates that the plaintiff alleges that the photos and videos were shared with "fellow dancers, NYC Ballet employees and donors."

 

 

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That's what makes the lawsuit so disturbing, that this type of behavior is considered normal at the New York City Ballet, that even donors expected this stuff from the male principals.

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These details are disgusting. If Waterbury was filmed in sexual acts without her knowledge/consent, this constitutes criminal activity. I guess Finlay is "lucky" there's only a civil suit at the moment. 

29 minutes ago, Helene said:

If what is in the suit is substantiated, I think the slap-on-the-wrist suspensions to Ramasar (at least) is going to be Exhibit [x] for how seriously (NOT) the Company addresses these issues and that NYCB administration and board are about to be in a world of hurt.

Right. It calls into question any credibility they may have in relation to creating a workplace free from sexual misconduct. And people will now have even less faith in the outcome of the Martins investigation. 

I agree that the inconsistencies between the two news stories make it difficult to ascertain to what degree non-dancer employees and patrons were involved.

How old is Waterbury? The story mentions she's a teenager.

Edited by fondoffouettes

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19 minutes ago, volcanohunter said:

It is dificult to imagine how Ramasar and Catazaro could return from their suspensions once all the sordid details have been revealed in court. 

If the allegations are true, I hope that what the dancers think counts as much to the company as what the audience might think. 

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2 minutes ago, Kathleen O'Connell said:

If the allegations are true, I hope that what the dancers think counts as much to the company as what the audience might think. 

Right. If the allegations are true, how could the "religious dancer" they talked about "double teaming" possibly feel comfortable dancing with these men? 

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The complaint in the case is available online.  The case number is New York Supreme Index #158220/2018.

It seems that Finlay has had problems with alcohol and drugs according to Waterbury in her complaint.  He has appeared at rehearsals intoxicated.

It seems that Finlay was requesting and receiving illicit nude photos and videos of female dancers either nude and/or having sex and sharing them with Catazaro and Ramasar.  According to Waterbury a photo of an NYCB soloist was taken of her changing while she was not looking at the camera without her consent - it seems that this was sent to Finlay but came from someone else.  Ramasar seemed to be very enthusiastic and involved in this sending a topless photo of another NYCB dancer to Finlay.  I am kind of shocked because Catazaro seems like a nice and hardworking guy in his social media (I know... I know...).

Waterbury specifically quotes statements by Ramasar and others which suggests that she has copies of the texts and communications saved and can offer them as evidence.  Finlay's immediate resignation is also telling.

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14 minutes ago, fondoffouettes said:

How old is Waterbury? The story mentions she's a teenager.

Waterbury is 19, according to the Daily News article.

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/ny-metro-ballerina-lawsuit-nude-photos-20180905-story.html

Plaintiff Alexandra Waterbury, 19, detailed how top male performers and other men affiliated with the group surreptitiously snapped sexually explicit photos of ballerinas or secretly shot video of sexual acts with co-workers — and freely shared them in a group chat.

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I tried accessing the Supreme Court document online - it said that the document is not available for public viewing at this time.  FauxPas, I assume you were able to access it?

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7 minutes ago, mom2 said:

I tried accessing the Supreme Court document online - it said that the document is not available for public viewing at this time.  FauxPas, I assume you were able to access it?

I just obtained  a copy of the complaint successfully through the NYSCEF  website. Any member of the public can obtain the complaint on that website. 

 

https://iapps.courts.state.ny.us/nyscef/Login

Edited by abatt

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On 8/30/2018 at 7:58 PM, vipa said:

One thing that may exacerbate the overall feeling of a dysfunctional company is the use of social media by many dancers, with the intention of building a fan base and showing that "dancers are people too." I'm not saying this is wrong to do, just that it carries risks. The most extreme example is the T. Peck/R. Fairchild engagement and marriage. This was not a simple announcement or something known only by diehard fans, it was all over the place. So when the marriage ended it was a big deal. Lauren Lovette's engagement to Finley was on social media. Bouder's pregnancy and now motherhood are a constant feed. Lexie Maxwell is very public on social media about her relationship with Ramasar. I'm talking public facing accounts. It's all "feel good" when things are going well, but if things take a turn for the worse with divorces, break-ups, etc. there can be problems. 

Oh even the NYTimes did a short feature on Peck/Fairchild's marriage. And there's an AOL produced youtube series on NYCB, over the two seasons of which all of Peck/Fairchild, Fairchild/Veyette and Finlay/Lovette's relationship were showcased.

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Thanks.  I've tried again; this time it worked.  Curious.

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Hmm. How long before the NYTimes has an article about the lawsuit. 

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35 minutes ago, Kathleen O'Connell said:

If the allegations are true, I hope that what the dancers think counts as much to the company as what the audience might think. 

Especially those dancers, who were treated like trading cards.

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So this lawsuit is not brought by whoever made the complaint last week? It certainly suggests a systematic problem that seems much graver than the Martins allegations and what seemed to be an "isolated outburst" last week.

Edited by bcash

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What truly vile accusations. If they're substantiated—if it's really as bad at NYCB as Miss Waterbury suggests—I hope the NYCB is taking far more significant steps beyond Finlay's resignation and the other two dancer's suspensions to correct (what has been described in the court docs as) an incredibly toxic work environment.

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This is the highest number of people I've seen on a topic at Ballet Alert since joining!

Chase needs to get lawyered up right away.  Any chance of him being hired by another ballet company are up in smoke based on these claims.

Edited by abatt

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I guess I should read the complaint, but I'm wondering what liability NYCB will have. Miss Waterbury, I gather, is a former SAB student and unaffiliated with NYCB. Whatever Chase did with/to her would seem, from a legal standpoint, to be at a remove from NYCB. (And I assume that filming sexual activity with the knowledge of only one of the partners is a crime, but can anyone confirm that?) Even if there is a "fraternity-like" atmosphere at NYCB, can the organization be held liable for what an employee does on his own time?

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I recently read a murder mystery (in translation) by Leena Lehtolainen, "The Nightingale Murder," in which the detective heroine is raped at syringe-point by the murderer, because he wants to confess to the rape in detail, so that no one would ever look at her again without envisioning the rape.

This cesspool activity does the same, to the men's partners and co-workers and other victims, regardless of their intent.  

Typically, people named in a lawsuit get "lawyered up." Getting another job may be the least of his worries.

 

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4 minutes ago, cobweb said:

I guess I should read the complaint, but I'm wondering what liability NYCB will have. Miss Waterbury, I gather, is a former SAB student and unaffiliated with NYCB. Whatever Chase did with/to her would seem, from a legal standpoint, to be at a remove from NYCB. (And I assume that filming sexual activity with the knowledge of only one of the partners is a crime, but can anyone confirm that?) Even if there is a "fraternity-like" atmosphere at NYCB, can the organization be held liable for what an employee does on his own time?

Yes, I think it would be a crime. I believe it falls under the "Stephanie's Law" that was passed in New York more than a decade ago. 

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