Top Swiss ballet to reform after harassment claims

Switzerland's prestigious Bejart Ballet Lausanne announced a string of reforms on Friday after it was plunged into turmoil by harassment allegations, though artistic director Gil Roman remains in his post.

Artistic Director of the Ballet Bejart Lausanne, Gil Roman, pictured with his dancers on stage.
Artistic Director of the Ballet Bejart Lausanne, Gil Roman (4L) is to remain in his post despite the claims. He is pictured here performing with his dancers in 2007 during a rehearsal of Maurice Bejart's final creation: "Around the World in 80 Minutes". AFP PHOTO / AFP FABRICE COFFRINI

“Due to repeated behaviour of sexual harassment, the production manager was dismissed with just cause with immediate effect,” according to a statement from the Maurice Bejart Foundation, which oversees the dance company founded in 1987.

The foundation announced a series of new measures guided by the findings of an independent audit, which reported “serious behavioural problems”.

Roman, who took over as artistic director in 2007 following the death of Bejart, and “whose brilliant creative qualities are unanimously recognised in the audit, will continue his mission as choreographer and ballet director with specific support and supervision”, the foundation said.

The backing came despite “a series of dysfunctions in terms of human resources and communication”. The report noted “unacceptable and vulgar attitudes; sometimes impulsive, angry or even insulting in terms of communication or relationships with others”.

But the board added that “the audit report in no way attests to rumours of sexual harassment, homophobia, consumption or trafficking of cocaine or even nepotism on the part of the artistic director”.

Roman will therefore be supervised and will work on the development of the troupe and the affiliated Rudra Bejart ballet school, where long-time director Michel Gascard and his wife, stage manager Valerie Lacaze, were fired over “serious shortcomings”.

The new system includes a director responsible for all activities including the future replacement school. It also includes a human resources manager and a personnel committee.

The foundation also promised a better-structured schedule, zero tolerance on drugs consumption and inappropriate behaviour, as well as a salary policy review.

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These are the most (and least) trusted professions in Switzerland

The butcher, the baker, the candlestick-maker don’t figure among the professions the Swiss people find most trustworthy. But these others do.

These are the most (and least) trusted professions in Switzerland

You may think the Swiss trust their bankers more than anyone else in the world. But if you believe that, you are wrong.

A new survey by, a Swiss consumer website, found that only 20 percent of study participants find bankers trustworthy.

On the other hand, the most trusted professionals in Switzerland (by 74 percent of respondents) are firefighters, followed by nurses (66 percent), doctors (64 percent), and pilots (63 percent).

An interesting pattern is emerging here: the Swiss put most trust in those who have the control of our lives and health.

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The flipside: the least trusted are…

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But they don’t fare as badly as other professionals.

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That is not a lot, but at least we fare better than footballers.

You can see the full study here.