Actors and stage managers for the Broadway musical “Paradise Square” have sent a letter to the union citing an “outstanding payments and benefits, and a continued pattern of abuse and neglect that created an unsafe and toxic work environment.”
Since receiving the letter, the Actors’ Equity union has issued a “Do Not Work” order against the show’s producer Garth Drabinsky. The move means that no union member will work for Drabinsky and in effect end his ability to produce any productions on Broadway and many other venues across the country.
The company is seeking $350,000 in unpaid wages. It is unknown at this time whether Amy plans for a national tour or international performances will be affected by the ruling.
“Paradise Square” ran on Broadway from April 3 to July 17. Prior to that April opening, news is now coming out that a crew member fell while climbing a ladder causing his pinkie finger to be severed. Medical personnel were unable to reattach the finger. The crew member cites, “how emotionally and physically unsafe that entire process was,”; adding that the producer constantly yelled at the stage manager.
In a “show of solidarity” the Canadian Actors’ Equity guild has also placed a Do No Work order for Drabinsky.
This is not Drabinsky’s first legal difficulty. In 2009, the Tony Award winning producer was charged with fraud and forgery for which he served time in jail. “Paradise Square” is his first production since being released from jail in 2014.
“Paradise Square” tells the story of African and Irish Americans in post Civil War New York. Actress Joaquina Kalukango earned a Tony Award for her performance at the 2022 Awards.