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White actor files discrimination suit against comedy theater

 

White actor files discrimination suit against comedy theater
White actor files discrimination suit against comedy theater

CHICAGO TRIBUNE

Wednesday, September 13, 2017, 8:48 AM

Scott Morehead, an actor and writer who was a cast member in the Second City e.t.c. revue "A Red Line Runs Through It," has filed a complaint against the storied comedy theater in Chicago alleging "discrimination and retaliation" in violation of the Title VII protections of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Morehead's attorney, Aaron B. Maduff, said that the lawsuit was filed in federal court in Chicago on Monday.

Morehead, who is white, alleges that he faced a series of backstage "racial slurs" from a fellow cast member, including threats and acts of violence against his person, and that Second City did not provide appropriate avenues for resolution.

The complaint says that Morehead was first suspended from the show without being given a reason, and then replaced by another actor. He was not offered further contracts.

The mainstage and e.t.c. stage of The Second City comedy theater troupe in Chicago is seen in a 2009 photo.

(Sally Ryan/ZUMAPRESS.com)

"Scott is a very talented actor and writer," Maduff said. "He had been given every expectation of moving up and on to further work."

Andrew Alexander, the owner and CEO of The Second City, a privately held company, confirmed Tuesday that Morehead was no longer working at Second City but said that he could not comment on pending litigation.

By several previous accounts, the "A Red Line Runs Through It" revue in question did not have a harmonious cast nor smooth relationships with Second City management. Although the show, which had a diverse cast, was both a critical and popular hit, at least two other cast members in the show have alleged publically that some audience members created a racially hostile environment, and that management had failed to adequately protect its own performers. Several "Red Line" cast members and managers left the company in October 2016.Send a Letter to the Editor

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