In recent Lizzo dancers news, three former tour dancers for the pop star Lizzo have brought forward serious allegations against the singer.
The claims made by Arianna Davis, Crystal Williams, and Noelle Rodriguez include accusations of sexual harassment, creating a hostile work environment, and instances of religious and racial harassment.
This scandal has shocked fans worldwide and raised questions about the treatment of employees within the music industry.
Lizzo Singer: The Face of Body Positivity Under Scrutiny
Known as a champion for body positivity and a proponent for empowering women of all sizes and colors, Lizzo has gained a large following for her upbeat, empowering music and outspoken stance on societal issues.
The lawsuit alleges that the singer, known as Melissa Viviane Jefferson, pressured her dancers into unwanted sexual situations, made veiled comments about a dancer’s weight gain, and subjected dancers to grueling rehearsals.
Unraveling the Allegations: Sexual Harassment and Hostile Work Environment
The lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, alleges that Lizzo created a hostile work environment that featured sexual harassment, a failure to prevent or remedy sexual harassment in the workplace, and a failure to prevent or rectify religious harassment.
The plaintiffs assert that they felt their employment was precarious and had to comply with uncomfortable requests to continue working.
Some of these requests were sexual, including pressure from Lizzo to attend a performance with nude dancers in Amsterdam, to eat bananas placed in nude dancers’ genitals, and pressure on one of the plaintiffs to touch a dancer’s breasts.
Alleged Religious Harassment
Besides the Lizzo dancers news sexual harassment allegations, the suit has brought to light instances of alleged religious harassment.
The lawsuit claims that Lizzo’s dance captain Shirlene Quigley spoke extensively about her Christian beliefs and criticized those who didn’t share these beliefs.
One dancer’s virginity was frequently discussed without her consent, and dancers were pressured to participate in group Christian prayer, regardless of their religious beliefs.
According to the lawsuit, all three defendants did little to remedy such actions despite being aware of them.
Lizzo ‘It’s About Damn Time’ Star Respond to Allegations
In response to these accusations, Lizzo star has categorically denied the allegations, labeling them as ‘unbelievable’ and ‘outrageous.’
The singer has not only pushed back against these allegations on social media but has also hired Hollywood lawyer Marty Singer. A renowned attorney known for representing high-profile celebrities like Jonah Hill, Kim Kardashian, and Chris Brown, to represent her in the case.
The Plaintiffs: A Closer Look at Their Background
The plaintiffs in this lawsuit, Arianna Davis, Crystal Williams, and Noelle Rodriguez, all have a history of working closely with Lizzo.
Davis and Williams began performing with Lizzo after participating in her Amazon reality show, “Watch Out for the Big Grrrls,” in 2021. On the other hand, Rodriguez was recruited in that same year after featuring in the “Rumors” video.
The Aftermath: Dismissal and Resignation
The aftermath of these allegations in Lizzo dancers news saw the dismissal of two dancers and the resignation of one. The lawsuit states that Lizzo fired Williams in April, just a few days after Williams raised concerns during a meeting where Lizzo accused dancers of drinking before performances.
Lizzo’s team attributed this decision to budget cuts. In April 2023, Davis claims that Lizzo questioned her “commitment,” a comment Davis perceived as a thinly veiled critique of her weight.
She claims she was fired on the spot the following month when the singer learned she recorded performance notes. The third plaintiff, Rodriguez, says she quit in response to the treatment by her teammates and Quigley’s intense religious proselytizing.
The Industry Context: A Mirror of Larger Problems
This lawsuit against Lizzo and her production company, Big Grrrl Big Touring Inc., mirrors larger, systemic issues within the music industry.
Critics often lambast the industry for its subpar working conditions, which encompass extended hours, arduous physical labor, and short-term contracts. Institutional oversight of individual artists isn’t always present, leading to a lack of accountability for such abuses.
The Impact on Lizzo’s Public Image
The Lizzo dancer’s news has significantly impacted the singer’s public image. Given the positions she has taken on women empowerment and celebrating plus-size bodies. Aspects of the lawsuit, such as the alleged statements concerning weight, appear to contradict those stances directly.
The Road Ahead
The lawsuit is still in its early stages, and it is yet to be seen how it will play out in court. However, the case has sparked renewed discussions about the necessity of holding stars accountable for their behavior and the persisting disparities.
Despite the severity of the allegations, Lizzo continues to inspire fans with her music and her message of body positivity and self-love.
Update: Since the filing of the lawsuit, six more former employees have filed similar complaints against Lizzo, raising more questions about the singer’s treatment of her staff.