Is this CF behaviour?(96 Posts)
Namechanged and this is going to be long, so please bear with me and thank you for reading in advance. I need to get this off my chest and maybe someone will come along with good advice.
I joined an amateur drama group and after acting one season, my friend and I were given the opportunities to direct the next production which is a pretty big deal and we are very excited and happy. The group is incredibly supportive and everything is fine on that front.
However, there's one person who is making trouble. I will try not to dripfeed and give you as much backstory as possible.
This person had been a member of the group before my friend and I joined but left the season we joined after a massive rift, caused by him being unreliable to work with, always late and quite volatile at times (not physically, but verbally abusive). It got so bad that the manager of the group blacklisted him, so he wouldn't be cast in the future (it's a community project so they don't usually exclude people). After this he wasn't cast in the next production and didn't get something to do backstage either because people refused to work with him as he was unpleasant. He kicked off after this rejection, insulting and harassing the directors and people in charge of backstage departments via text, social media and email, simply creating new accounts when he was blocked. He even stalked one of the girls until he was cautioned by the police. After this he went to some sort of therapy, when he finished he announced he wouldn't have anything to do with the drama group anymore, deleted everyone's numbers and left the group chat. This didn't last long however as he soon started texting people again and showed up to a performance simply to make people feel uncomfortable.
So far for the backstory, when the play for the next season was announced in the group chat, I received a text from an unknown number shortly afterwards. It was this person, asking if it was true that I was directing. I said yes and gave him short but polite answers about the auditioning process. He then started to ask questions about the script and started to badmouth other members of the group to me. I told him truthfully that I couldn't answer these questions because these things were only between the directors and management at that time. His tone had been friendly until then but after my message he asked if I was "always this blunt and hostile", because he was "just trying to get to know the directors". I ignored the message and he didn't try again. He probably thought we didn't know the backstory and it would be an easy way back in. He also sent us friend requests on facebook and was just very "in your face" which made me and my friend very uncomfortable.
Today we have received an email from this person on the "official" drama group address, where he didn't address me, only my co-director and stated that our audition dates didn't suit him, so could he come 30 minutes before finishing and we just give him a monologue there or send it per email. The audition process usually includes some improv and reading with other members of the group, so we can see how they go together. On these things we then chose a monologue for each person auditioning to learn by heart to perform in front of us. There are three audition dates and as a former member he should be well acquainted with the process.
AIBU to tell him that if he wants to audition, he has to do the same things everyone else does? And are we unreasonable to not want to include him at all because of his past behaviour? Personally, even without knowing the backstory, I would have had enough after him trying to suck up to me while simultaneously insulting me but maybe I am overreacting. How would you deal with the issue?
I would reply there 3 dates and the audition process is the same for everybody in order that there is a fair and open process. Itbis unfortunate that you will not be able to audition on this occasion. And then ignore/block etc
See the manager asap and show them the correspondence. They need to handle this from here on. You shouldn't be dealing with this and this individual needs to be permanently excluded imo. Do not enter into any further correspondence and definitely do not meet this person after hours, etc.
I'd reply with "As you know, you have previously been banned from this drama group. Do not contact me again or I will report you for harrassment." Never ever reply.
This person is a stalker imo and no good will come from them auditioning.
Just tell him that he has to audition the same way everyone else does. He is already trying to make you jump through hoops for him, do NOT give him an in!
I’d reply that due to past behaviour it would not be appropriate for him to audition and that if he continues to contact you or any other members of the group you will report for harassment.
Eh just tell him he is not welcome to auction at all. Tell him straight that he is banned and not welcome to group at all
Do not allow him to audition or have anything to do with him. He was banned for a reason and a good one, by the sounds of it. Block him from everything and don’t answer him back. People who harass seem to love the answers they get, even negative. Ignore completely.
If he stalked a member of the group to the point of a police caution surely he is banned?
I certainly wouldn't change the audition process for him. That would be blatantly unfair on everyone else.
Thank you all for responding so quickly, I appreciate your input.
My instinct says that not even letting him audition is the right decision. The problem is that he can still turn up and make trouble which gives me a great deal of anxiety.
The manager is a bit useless unfortunately, he's an elderly man who has this drama group as his favourite project but he's got his head in the clouds, letting us directors deal with the day to day stuff, that he even went and blacklisted the guy is a surprise.
We will definitely not give in to his demands but I feel slightly guilty because he has MH issues.
Are you joking?
He stalked a member of the group and the police were involved.
There should be one standard answer to him, sent from whoever leads this group - regardless of who has received the contact or who is directing that season.
“As you are aware, due to previous criminal behaviour and police involvement, we cannot allow you to be part of this group. No future reply than this will be given to you from any member of the group. If you persist in contacting any member of the group via any channel, it will be ignored and passed to the police.”
^ but worded by a solicitor.
There is no fucking way you should be allowing him to audition at the set time, let alone another time.
It’s disrespectful to the member who had to involve the police, for a start!!!
He definitely shouldn't be invited to audition given his history
I would block him on all social media and ensure he isn't still in any whatsapp groups relating to your group. If he continues to harass either you or your friend then report him.
If he is allowed 'back in the fold' you realise he will sabotage your whole production?
I don’t see how he should allowed to be back, he verbally abused members of the group and the police got involved for him stalking. Surely that should give him an outright ban? I think you and your co-director shouldn’t even audition him, aside from the difficulties he’s already causing (before anything has even started!) he could put another member of the group at risk of harm.
Just ignore all messages and emails from him altogether. Block him as much as you can. If he turns up for an audition at the correct time so be it but if he turns up early or late expecting to be heard then dont engage with him. Needless to say you can't give him a part anyway as the other cast and crew won't want to work with him. As he has been banned from the group you really don't need to have anything to do with him.
The problem is that he can still turn up and make trouble which gives me a great deal of anxiety.
If that happens you call the Police and explain that he has already received a caution for stalking a member of the group and has now turned up, which is making everyone feel threatened.
And stop feeling guilt - his issues are NOT your problem.
He sounds potentially very dangerous and is already known to be abusive and volatile.
He's stalked a female cast member already. You need to involve the directors/management and report this guy to Police.
Each and every time he gets a response from either yourself or someone else linked to the group is effectively feeding the bear.
Don't feed the bear, he'll eventually go elsewhere BUT may need a chat from the police first.
Why would you consider letting him audition
She is the director. Its up to her to handle it
We are not going to cast him, because of the member who had the police involved, but it's hard to exclude him from auditions as they are happening in a public building.
We are worried about his behaviour and that he's going to actually attack someone this time. I am pretty relieved actually that other people think it's right to not include him, I was worried I'd get flamed for that or I was overreacting. We emailed him and told him that he has to audition like everyone else which means he has to be on time and everything. I'll include his email because I find it pretty cheeky, almost as if he just expects us to say yes to everything, just so you have an impression. Thank you all again for reassuring me that this is the right thing to do.
Hi XXX, (name redacted obviously)
I hope ya'll are enjoying this weather.
I'd love to participate again this season.
On Thursday the 25th the earliest I could get there would be 930.
Monday I could be there no worries and the following Thursday again 930.
If this isn't a problem, it'd be great if ya'll could give me a monologue (on the Thursday or via email Friday) for Monday the 29th.
Yo need to tell him not to bother turning up as he can't audition
Actually, yes, re-reading your post, he shouldn't even audition. I appreciate you are worried about the hassle he will cause but if you give this guy an inch, the hassle will get worse and worse.
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