Ballet Victoria became the subject of controversy this week when it was revealed a staff member had been investigated for allegedly taking nude photographs of students. (Black Press file photo)

Ballet Victoria became the subject of controversy this week when it was revealed a staff member had been investigated for allegedly taking nude photographs of students. (Black Press file photo)

B.C. ballet staffer fired in wake of sexual allegations

Bruce Monk was previously let go and rehired by Victoria company

A Ballet Victoria employee has been let go after it was revealed earlier this week that he is the subject of a lawsuit for allegedly taking nude photos of underage students in Winnipeg.

The company announced Wednesday that Bruce Monk will no longer be associated with Ballet Victoria to “ensure the integrity of the company.”

Monk came to work for Ballet Victoria in 2008 as a guest choreographer. The company then let him go when they became aware of a criminal investigation for the same allegations, and later brought him back.

“When criminal allegations were made, all involvement between Ballet Victoria and Bruce Monk was suspended,” a representative said in an email statement.

”When the investigation was concluded and no charges were forthcoming, the working relationship was resumed.”

Monk began working for the company again in late 2016 on small contracts as a lighting and production designer, and as a volunteer in the office and as a driver.

Paul Destrooper, executive director of Ballet Victoria, worked with Monk at the Royal Winnipeg Ballet for 11 years from 1990 until 2001 and was not aware of any inappropriate behaviour or allegations, according to a statement.

“Ballet Victoria cares for the physical and emotional health of all artists, staff and volunteers with great care and diligence. The entire ensemble works as a team, together in a group format and all adhere strictly to a zero tolerance policy for any harassment, bullying or discrimination of any sort,” reads the statement.

Monk was fired in 2015 by the Royal Winnipeg Ballet after the school learned he was the subject of a police investigation, but was never charged.

lauren.boothby@vicnews.com

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