'New York Times' theater critic attacked after comments on Broadway performer's body size
Laura Collins-Huges, a theater critic for the New York Times, drew outrage after allegedly body-shaming a Broadway actress.
As reported by PEOPLE, Collins-Huges commented on Alysha Umphress's body in her critique of the musical, Smokey Joe's Cafe: The Songs of Leiber and Stoller.
She wrote: "Umphress, by the way, is bigger than the other women onstage, and the costume designer, Alejo Vietti, doesn't seem to have known how to work with that, dressing her in an unnecessarily unflattering way."
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This comment didn't sit well with the 36-year-old actress, who quickly took to Twitter to air her disappointment with the theater critic.
"It's shocking to see a woman (especially a woman whose social media would suggest she is a pro woman) body shame an actress who isn't a size O and praise one that is. Her wording wasn't constructive. It was full on mean girl. It's 2018. We should be celebrating women's diversity in the arts, not shaming them, by the way, for being the biggest of the girls," Umphress tweeted on July 23, 2018.
She added that while Collins-Huges intention may be to point out the mistakes of the costume designer, the theater critic made her the sacrificial lamb.
Last night I cried myself to sleep. This morning I woke up mad as hell. Tonight I feel completely overwhelmed and extremely grateful from the outpouring of love and support from this amazing community (and beyond)! Thank you all from the bottom of my heart. You’re all FEROSH.— Alysha Umphress (@Cristalzheat) July 24, 2018
"Truly disappointed and saddened by her ugly and pointless description. Also, I think I look pretty ferosh," Umphress continued.
Her tweet has been liked more than 1,500 times and retweeted 357 times as of July 26, 2018.
The next day, Umphress tweeted again and admitted that she cried herself to sleep the night before. She thanked her supporters for sending her comforting and encouraging messages.
Broadway Star Fires Back at New York Times Critic Who 'Body Shamed' Her: 'Full on Mean Girl' https://t.co/ICp7rvFuIp— People (@people) July 24, 2018
Fellow Broadway star Tony Yazbeck told her on Twitter: "Just wanted to add my love and support for ya! Proud of you for standing up to this! You are a true diva who is not to be messed with! Can't wait to see you in the show!"
The actress previously starred in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (1999), The Battery's Down (2008) and Bonding (2018).