As Lizzo‘s former backup dancers tell the world about their experiences working for her, the performer insists everything is not what it seems.
After the “Truth Hurts” singer was sued by three of her former dancers for alleged sexual, racial, and religious harassment along with poor working conditions earlier this month, the singer’s lawyer claims she plans to countersue for the plaintiffs’ alleged hypocritical behavior.
Her lawyer, Marty Singer, shared photos with PEOPLE on Wednesday, which allegedly depict the plaintiffs–Arianna Davis, Crystal Williams and Noelle Rodriguez–“happily cavorting backstage” with performers from Crazy Horse’s topless cabaret show on March 5, 2023 in Paris.
“These images showing the three plaintiffs gleefully reveling backstage after the topless show were taken after their February 2023 visit to Bananenbar in Amsterdam that they complain about in their lawsuit,” Singer wrote in a statement, referencing another club the dancers claimed to have been pressured to attend and touch nude performers.
All three dancers returned to work on Lizzo’s tour following the Paris outing, according to Singer. The following month, Davis allegedly submitted an audition tape to Lizzo’s TV show Watch Out for the Big Grrrls, in which she claimed she wants to “follow in her footsteps.”
“After Ms. Davis’s audition video became public, she tried to explain away her glowing comments about Lizzo by claiming the ‘bulk’ of her accusations were based on things that happened later,” the lawyer’s statement continued. “That excuse is completely contradicted by the facts, including by these images…The lawsuit is a sham. Lizzo intends to sue for malicious prosecution after she prevails and these specious claims are dismissed.”
Davis, Williams, and Rodriguez’s attorney Neama Rahmani claims in a statement to the publication that they “stand by every claim in the lawsuit and look forward to trial,” despite the photos. Rahmani also refers to Singer’s comments as “victim shaming” and says they don’t “change any facts in the lawsuit.”
According to a reports from the Los Angeles Times, 14 of Lizzo’s dancers received a settlement for a separate dispute just months before the harassment lawsuit was filed.
These dancers reportedly received a separate settlement relating to footage that appeared in the 2022 documentary Love, Lizzo. Their manager raised the dispute in January, saying the dancers’ intimate discussion of how misogyny, weight-shaming, and racism affect them was used unauthorized.
The manager, Slay Smiles, said that the documentary had “truly exploited these women and violated the emotional safety they had in those moments.” A group–including the co-production company Boardwalk Pictures and a “Lizzo entity”–settled the dispute in February after a dancer hired an attorney.
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