Three of Lizzo’s former dancers have filed a lawsuit against her.
This lawsuit comes after claims of religious, sexual, and racial harassment, as well as disability discrimination, assault, and false imprisonment, according to a press release. The lawsuit is also being filed against not just Lizzo but her production company, Big Grrrl Big Touring, Inc. (BGBT), and dance captain Shirlene Quiqley.
In an interview with BBC News, former dancer Noelle Rodriguez said: “I don’t think she is the villain. “But I do think she needs to be held accountable for what she has done.” The singer has also been accused of creating a hostile work environment, where one dancer was accused of ‘not being committed to her role,’ after gaining weight.
Lizzo is an American rapper, singer, song-writer, actress, and musician. She started out in underground, local groups while living in Minneapolis, with one being a three-piece all-female R&B and rap group called Chalice. Chalice was successful locally, releasing two EPs before their disbandment in 2016, after which Lizzo focused on her first hip-hop album, Lizzobangers.
The release of Cuz I Love You in 2019 marked a turning point in her career, as she began to attract more mainstream attention; the album debuted at number six on the Billboard 200.
According to allegations, she reportedly invited dancers to a nude cabaret bar in Amsterdam’s red-light district without disclosing what the performance actually was. The lawsuit claims that Lizzo was ‘pressuring Ms. (Arianna) Davis to touch the breasts of one of the nude women performing at the club.’
It also alleges that Lizzo instigated a group chant to further try to pressure Davis into interacting with the dancer, despite her refusing many times.
To further add to the lawsuit claims, it was also said that Lizzo coerced her dancers to engage in a nude photoshoot, during her dance competition show, Watch Out for the Big Grrrls on Amazon Prime.
In an interview with the Daily Mail, Davis said: “If you don’t really participate and try to get in with Lizzo, you won’t be booked on as many jobs. “She won’t like you as much.”
Furthermore, in the lawsuit, Crystal Williams details that she was fired from her job when she spoke up at a meeting and challenged a claim from Lizzo, stating that dancers were drinking before performances.
Williams, in an interview with BBC News, said: “I’m hoping that with this, accountability can be had, and things will be put in place moving forward to ensure that this type of thing doesn’t happen again. “I wouldn’t want this to happen to anybody.”
Lizzo has always been known for spreading and being an advocate for body positivity and making the plus-size community feel good about themselves. She won the hearts of millions of fans with her constant advocacy for people to love themselves no matter what they look like, as well as self-love.
Lizzo is also known for calling out trolls and those who bully her for her weight, all the while advocating for Black women in the music industry.
This is also a very much known factor in her music, with lyrics such as “Thick thighs save lives” (‘Tempo’), and “True love finally happens when you by yourself” (‘Soulmate’).
In an interview with NBC, former dancer Davis said: “I believe that a lot of people are taking good from what she’s doing. “But in closed quarters with her on a daily basis, it tends to be very intense and very unforgiving.”
The dancer’s attorney, Roy Zambrano, said: “The stunning nature of how Lizzo and her management team treated their performers seems to go against everything Lizzo stands for publicly.”
“While privately, she weight shames her dancers and demeans them in ways that are not only illegal but absolutely demoralising.”
Furthermore, dance captain Shirlene Quigley is being accused of making dancers feel uncomfortable with her comments, especially surrounding her beliefs on premarital sex.
She is also accused of trying to convert dancers and openly talking about her sexual fantasies.
Quigley took to Instagram on the day that news of the lawsuit broke, stating in a video that ‘God loves you so much,’ and choosing not to immediately address the claims.
In a recent Instagram story post, Quiqley addressed the claims, stating: “I want to categorically state that these accusations are not only baseless, but profoundly hurtful.
“My priority remains in preserving the artistry and dedication that has defined my career.”
Many people were outraged with news of the lawsuit, taking to X to share their opinions, ‘If this is all true, what a hypocrite,’ and ‘I never liked Lizzo.’
Fans were quick to point out that the lawsuit is shedding light on what Lizzo is really like and is a juxtaposition to the character she showcases and what she seems to stand for, being body positivity and self-love, to name a few.
Some are even saying that Beyonce, who is currently on her Renaissance World Tour, omitted Lizzo’s name from her song, Break My Soul (Queen’s Remix). Break My Soul is a song that celebrates Black women in the entertainment industry, and Lizzo was one of the many names included in the lyrics. However, at her show in Boston, only a few days after news of the lawsuit came out, Beyonce was filmed not singing her name.
Lizzo also responded to the claims against her on Instagram, saying: “Usually I choose not to respond to false allegations, but these are as unbelievable as they sound and too outrageous not to be addressed.
“As an artist, I have always been very passionate about what I do. With passion comes hard work and high standards. I’m hurt, but I will not let the good work I’ve done in the world be overshadowed by this.”
In an interview with ET Canada, Davis said: “Nobody speaks up because they’re so scared for their jobs.
“I was terrified for my job.”
Williams added: “If there’s anything that I can do in my power to ensure that dancers, singers, or whoever decides to work with her don’t have to go through that same experience, I’m going to do that.”
The lawsuit highlights the poor working conditions in the music industry and the lack of accountability for such actions.
Stars such as Cher and Britney Spears have been sued in the past by employees for alleged discrimination and battery, respectively.
The suit is bringing to light discussions about celebrities and stars being held accountable for their bad behaviour and actions.
This is an ongoing story.
Share This Post On
Leave a comment
You need to login to leave a comment. Log-in