Producers of the collapsed Shakespeare’s Rose Theatre have “strongly disputed” a statement from Equity claiming more than 70 actors and crew have been left out of pocket for their work.
Shakespeare’s Rose Theatre Ltd ran pop-up venues in York and Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire this summer, and had been set to return to York next year.
However, the organisation has now gone into liquidation following “unsustainable losses”. Parent company Lunchbox Theatrical Productions has also gone into administration.
Equity published a statement last week saying that it was “currently supporting 76 members who have been left unpaid and without pension contributions after working for Shakespeare’s Rose Theatre Limited”.
A spokesman for the union told The Stage that the claims currently total about £15,000.
However, Lunchbox Theatricals argued that Equity’s statement was “misleading” as it allegedly “[implies] that all 76 actors have not been paid for their work on Shakespeare’s Rose Theatre”.
A statement from Lunchbox Theatricals said: “Shakespeare’s Rose Theatre employed 150 cast, creatives, musicians and crew for a 17-week period from early May to early September.
“All were paid for their work to the end of both the York and Blenheim Palace seasons, amounting to over £1.75 million.”
The statement added that producers believe there are a “very small number of actors who opted to invoice the company rather than be on the payroll” that are owed money for a cancelled season in Manila, the Philippines, because their invoices were reportedly submitted to the company after it went into liquidation.
It continued: “This amounts to approximately £13,000 and we are working with the liquidators to resolve this.
“It goes without saying that we very much regret any unpaid monies as over the last 27 years we have employed many hundreds of cast, crew, musicians and technicians over many hundreds of productions around the world and have always paid in full and on time.”
The statement said the company was working with liquidators to “obtain clarity on the situation regarding pension contributions”.