Peter Martins Retires From New York City Ballet Following Misconduct Allegations
According to the New York Times, Peter Martins, New York City ballet leader for over three decades, has decided to retire following accusations of sexual harassment and physical and verbal abuse. As previously reported by BroadwayWorld, at least five City Ballet Dancers have accused Martins of abuse.
In a letter informing the board of his retirement, Martins states, "I have denied, and continue to deny, that I have engaged in any such misconduct. I cooperated fully in the investigation and understand it will be completed shortly. I believe its findings would have vindicated me."
Charles W. Scharf, the chairman of City Ballet's board, issued a statement that noted that the investigation will continue. "The board takes seriously the allegations that have been made against him and we expect the independent investigation of those allegations to be completed soon," the statement read.
In his letter, Martins said the accusations had "exacted a painful toll on me and my family" and that he was retiring to "bring an end to this disruption."
This departure could create turmoil within the company, as there appears to be a split between former and current dancers. Former dancers are those who have complained of abuse, stating that they were intimidated by Martins and were too afraid to complain out of fear of physical and verbal abuse.
However, several current dancers disagreed with the way Martins was being talked about.
"He has been nothing but respectful of me," Sterling Hyltin, a longtime principal ballerina, said in a recent interview. "It's been really upsetting to see former dancers speaking on behalf of current dancers."
Read the full article here.