Judge Rules in Favor of SDC; PARADISE SQUARE Owes Over $140K for Unpaid Fees

The SDC complaint is one of several recent legal actions taken against Paradise Square producers.

By: Nov. 28, 2022
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As BroadwayWorld reported in August, the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society offically took legal action against the Broadway production of Paradise Square, seeking to recover outstanding royalties and fees, as well as pension and health contributions owed to the musical's director Moisés Kaufman, Tony-winning choreographer Bill T. Jones, and three specialty choreographers who worked on the production.

BroadwayWorld has just learned that earlier today, November 28, a District Court judge ruled in favor of SDC. Paradise Square Broadway owes the petitioner over $140K, in addition to over $9K in attorneys fees and other costs.

United Scenic Artists, Local USA 829, took similar legal action against the production after winning more than $150,000 in unpaid wages and benefits in arbitration, yet never receiving payment from the production.

Actors' Equity also sought more than $180,000 in unpaid wages and benefits. Shortly after taking legal action against the production, the union placed producer Garth Drabinsky on the company's Do Not Work list due to "outstanding payments and benefits, and a continued pattern of abuse and neglect that created an unsafe and toxic work environment."

In October, Drabinsky, represented by the Roth Law Firm, PLLC, filed suit against Actors' Equity Association for defamation. Actors' Equity is being sued for an "intentional campaign of harassment and abuse, publishing numerous untruthful statements about Drabinsky that represented major misrepresentations of his character, history, activities, and beliefs."

Paradise Square concluded its Broadway run on July 17 at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre, following 23 previews and 108 performances. Paradise Square was nominated for 10 Tony Awards including Best Musical, with star Joaquina Kalukango receiving the Tony for Best Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical.

Between Broadway and earlier engagements at Berkeley Repertory Theatre in Berkeley, CA. in 2019, and at the James M. Nederlander Theatre in Chicago in 2021, Paradise Square played over 200 performances. A national tour is being planned for the 2023-2024 season, and international productions are also in development.