Rockettes Can “Choose” To Perform At Trump Inauguration
After a social-media driven controversy, Madison Square Garden and a performers union have clarified that the Rockette dancers are not being forced to perform at the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump.
“For a Rockette to be considered for an event, they must voluntarily sign up and are never told they have to perform at a particular event, including the inaugural,” the company said in a statement. “It is always their choice. In fact, for the coming inauguration, we had more Rockettes request to participate than we have slots available.”
The dancers’ union had previously sent them an email stating the terms of their contract, which was later circulated on social media. It seemed to imply that at least some dancers were obligated to fulfill this gig; but management has since decided to make this event voluntary.
MSG claims that more dancers than could be accommodated requested to perform at the inauguration.
Dancer Pheobe Pearl wrote on Instagram on Thursday that “the decision of performing for a man that stands for everything we’re against is appalling.” Supporters circulated the email addresses and phone numbers of supervisors at Madison Square Garden and the American Guild of Variety Artists (the union that represents the Rockettes).