Former Lizzo dancers reveal distressing accounts of alleged harassment: ‘I was utterly mortified’.

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Former dancers for Lizzo are speaking out after they sued the artist for sexual harassment, racial discrimination and fostering a hostile work environment.

Two plaintiffs in the case, Arianna Davis, 24, and Crystal Williams, 26, talked openly in interviews about the suffering they said they endured by Lizzo, whose legal name is Melissa Jefferson.

Despite the singer’s body-positive rhetoric, Davis alleged she was fat-shamed by Jefferson.

Davis and Williams, both contestants on Jefferson’s Amazon Prime reality TV show, Watch Out for the Big Grrrls, were also accused of “drinking on the job”, which they vehemently deny. “Alcohol wasn’t even allowed in our dressing room,” Davis told CBS News in an interview.

In another instance, Davis told CBS she was pressured to go to a club and touch the breasts of a nude performer against her will after Jefferson incited others to chant Davis’s name. The lawsuit says: “The chant grew louder and more strident, demanding a visibly uncomfortable Ms Davis to engage with the performer.”

“I was mortified,” Davis said.

Davis and Williams said they were afraid to speak out earlier because they feared for their jobs. Williams was ultimately fired in a hotel lobby.

“I just couldn’t sit with the fact that this was happening behind the scenes … she’s kind of contradicting everything she stands for,” Williams said.

The suit also names Noelle Rodriguez, another dancer and third plaintiff, as well as additional defendants: production company Big GRRRL Big Touring Inc, and Shirlene Quigley, Jefferson’s dance captain.

Rodriguez claims she was made to conform to Quigley’s dogmatic religious beliefs like being forced to lead a group prayer.

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“While it was not an official requirement for team members to participate in these prayers, it became clear that engagement was compulsory,” the lawsuit states.

Quigley is also accused of making “constant sexually inappropriate comments”.

Jefferson and her team have not yet publicly commented on the allegations.

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