Israeli expelled from NYC drama school after sexual harassment allegations

26-year-old claims accusations against him by seven students are fabrications and misrepresentations, expulsion motivated by antisemitism

The Empire State Building in New York City, November 14, 2022. (AP Photo/Julia Nikhinson, File)
The Empire State Building in New York City, November 14, 2022. (AP Photo/Julia Nikhinson, File)

An Israeli man studying at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City was expelled after seven students filed sexual harassment complaints against him.

The Jerusalem native asserted to the Ynet news site that half of the complaints are lies, and the rest are misrepresentations.

He alleged the expulsion had antisemitic and racist motives, but did not explain how.

The complaints, six of which were filed by women and one by a man, include inappropriate sexual advances, comments, and actions such as drawing genitalia on another student’s back. The Israeli student, however, argued all the incidents were being misconstrued.

The 26-year-old, who Ynet did not name, claimed that his actions may have been misunderstood due to cultural differences with “Gen Z,” a nickname for the demographic cohort of people born in the mid to late 1990s.

He also said he intends on suing the school.

The school said in a statement that it cannot comment on investigations of students.

Notable alumni of the acting conservatory include Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Tyne Daly and Jason Derulo.

Numerous Israelis have gone to study at AMDA in recent years after graduating from a musical theater program run by the Tel Aviv-Jaffa Municipality. AMDA holds auditions in Israel once a year.

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