The New York Post reports that Sherri Parker Lee, who plays the prison secretary in Not About Nightingales, is on the verge of filing a grievance with Actors' Equity regarding her co-star, Finbar Lynch. According to the Post's sources, Lynch has been screaming at Lee backstage, slapping her too hard during one scene, and not pulling his punches during the show's brawls.
Actors' Equity executive director Alan Eisenberg told the Post, "She has tried to deal with this responsibly and privately, but she is quite frightened by the whole situation." Reached May 26, Equity spokesperson Helaine Feldman told Playbill On-Line no grievance had been filed on Tuesday, May 25. "The matter is being handled internally in the Equity office," she said but would not comment further on the alleged incidents. Asked in general terms how such situations might be resolved, Feldman said, "Each situation is different. For example, there's the possibility of calling up a grievance committee. But again, every situation has its own circumstances."
A call to producer Stuart Thompson's office was referred production spokesperson Philip Rinaldi, who said the show's producers have "no comment."
Producer Carol Shorenstein Hays told the Post, "Everyone within the company has been alerted to this situation, and we have spent a lot of time working to the best of our ability to create a safe environment for the actors."
Not About Nightingales, a Tony-nominated best play, runs at the newly-reopened Circle in the Square Theatre. The production, leading actor Corin Redgrave, and featured actor Lynch, are all Tony nominees. Lynch has a long list of UK and Ireland credits, including the Royal Shakespeare Company's A Midsummer Night's Dream that came to Broadway a few seasons back.