Update (11/16 @ 2:08 pm): PerformInk reached out to the MET board following the 11/13 meeting for a statement and received the following: “The Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre Board met as scheduled on Tuesday, November 13th and is diligently working toward next steps. A more detailed statement will follow our next scheduled meeting on November 27th, 2018.”
Update (11/8 @ 3:36 pm): The original statement from the MET Board was unclear on whether Robert Paisley has resigned from the board or just his role as Board President. PerformInk has confirmed that he has resigned from the board entirely.
The Board of Directors at Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre has released a statement regarding the allegations in the article released by The Pitch detailing years of staff and artist abuse at the hands of its leaders Karen and Bob Paisley. The now 7-member board says that they have accepted the resignation of Bob Paisley from his position as Board President and that they will meet in a closed session on Tuesday to discuss the allegations, saying they are “deeply troubled” by them and are taking the matter seriously. The full statement follows.
The Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre Board of Directors will meet in closed session on Tuesday, November 13, 2018 to discuss recent allegations brought against the principals of our company, Robert Paisley and Karen Paisley. The board of directors is deeply troubled by the complaints raised by former staff, actors, technicians, and associates of Actors Equity. We are grieved to learn that multiple administrative staff and contract employees did not feel safe and/or respected during their time at the MET to the extent that they did not feel they had proper recourse without fear of retaliation by the MET, or in the broader theatre community.
The Board of Directors is taking this matter seriously, and working urgently to formulate a strategic plan that will appropriately address the concerns brought forward in a way that protects the best interests of the company and restores faith in the working conditions and operational procedures of the Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre in the broader community. We have opened communication with the liaison committee of our local Actors Equity Association as well as with other stakeholders in the performing arts community. We are listening.
We believe it is important that the public know that we have assured that our staff, actors, and technicians participating in our current production of “The Orphans’ Home Cycle” are working under safe conditions. We greatly respect the work they are doing and thank them for their service during this difficult time. Our Associate Artistic Director and resident Actors Equity member Todd Lanker has been present throughout the rehearsal process and run, as have other outside observers and chaperones.
At this time the board also wishes to make it public knowledge that we have accepted the resignation of Robert Paisley from his position as President of the Board of Directors. Further actions and additional information as to our response will be forthcoming.
The Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre Board of Directors