A black transgender actor has filed a complaint against the producers of Hamilton, alleging they lost a role in the massively successful stage production for requesting access to a gender-neutral dressing room.
Suni Reid, who uses they/them pronouns, alleges fellow cast members ‘physically threatened’ them and ‘intentionally and repeatedly mis-gendered them’.
The actor joined the Broadway cast of Hamilton in 2017 and has also appeared in the Chicago and Los Angeles productions, their lawyers said.
It is alleged Reid made a request for a gender-neutral dressing room while performing at the Pantages Theatre in Los Angeles in June, only for their contract renewal to be suspended weeks later.
The actor was side-lined during rehearsals, previews and ‘finally opening night and beyond’, according to a federal complaint filed with the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).
Reid, who played major Hamilton roles including Aaron Burr and George Washington, was allegedly told in September their contract would no longer be renewed.
The EEOC complaint includes allegations of discrimination and harassment committed by cast members and management.
Reid intends to pursue their claims in federal court, according to the original complaint.
In a statement, the actor’s lawyers Lawrence M Pearson and Lindsay M Goldbrum said: ‘Publicly, Hamilton is a beacon of diversity and appears committed to causes seeking social justice and harmony.
‘Behind the curtain, however, the company’s management will force out a black, transgender cast member simply because they stood up for themselves and advocated for a more equitable workplace, and therefore called that public image into question.
‘We look forward to upholding Mx Reid’s rights and hope this is a wake-up call for the theatre industry about the systemic inequities that persist even at its greatest heights.’
Hamilton denied the allegations and described Reid as a ‘valued cast member’, adding it ‘offered them a contract to return to Hamilton with terms responsive to their requests’.
‘We deny the allegations in the charge,’ the show said. ‘We have not discriminated or retaliated against Suni.’
It opened on Broadway in 2015 and won 11 Tony Awards, as well as achieving blistering box office success, before launching in the West End in 2017 and claiming six Laurence Olivier Awards.
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