On Wednesday, October 13, 2021, Wigdor LLP filed a Charge of Discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission against Hamilton the Musical, Adventureland LLC and Eliza Tour, LLC (together, “Hamilton”) on behalf of Suni Reid in connection with claims of retaliation and discrimination on the basis of race, gender, gender identity and LGBTQ+ status.
Mx. Reid, who uses they/them and she/her pronouns, is a Black, non-binary performer who joined the Broadway cast of Hamilton in October 2017 and later joined the Chicago and Los Angeles casts. Mx. Reid performed in both the ensemble and in principal roles, including Aaron Burr, George Washington, Hercules Mulligan/James Madison, and Lafayette/Thomas Jefferson.
The EEOC Charge alleges that Mx. Reid experienced repeated incidents of discrimination and harassment committed by Hamilton castmates and management in New York and Chicago, including certain actors physically threatening Mx. Reid or intentionally misgendering them. Many of these incidents occurred in the dressing spaces for male performers, as alleged.
As set forth in the EEOC Charge, Mx. Reid was presented with their contract renewal offer in or around May 2021 and shortly thereafter made a legally protected request that performers have access to a gender-neutral dressing room at the Pantages Theatre in Los Angeles, consistent with California law. Weeks later, as alleged, Hamilton suspended the renewal of Mx. Reid’s contract, sidelining them during rehearsals, previews, and finally opening night and beyond.
As alleged, following Mx. Reid’s request, Hamilton eventually provided a gender-neutral dressing room to the Los Angeles cast after another cast member generously offered to give up his private dressing room. However, the Company still would not drop its retaliatory animus toward Mx. Reid and rescinded their contract renewal offer altogether, the EEOC Charge alleges.
Statement from Lawrence M. Pearson and Lindsay M. Goldbrum:
“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 theater industry about the systemic inequities that persist even at its greatest heights.”
“Black trans Hamilton actor who performed on Broadway files equality complaint against show over claims producers FIRED them from LA production for requesting gender neutral dressing room”
October 13, 2021