Lisa Macuja, father held liable for firing ballet dancer



The Court of Appeals has found prima ballerina Lisa Macuja-Elizalde and her father Cesar Macuja liable for damages for revoking the scholarship of a ballet dancer in 2003.

In a 26-page decision, the Court’s Eleventh Division affirmed the decision of the Quezon City Regional Trial Court, Branch 104, dated June 13, 2008, denying the appeal of plaintiffs Manuel Chavez, Carmelita Chavez and Marian Camille Chavez.

In January 2000, Camille, who was then 11 years old, was enrolled in a ballet dancing class in Ballet Manila (BM), which was being managed by the Macujas.

Camille was given a scholarship as well as the pas de deux role in 2003 Summer Workshop of BM entitled “Blue Bird”, and began rehearsing for the part.

On April 14, 2003, Lisa Macuja asked Camille if she auditioned with Ballet Philippines (BP), a rival school of BM.

She denied the allegation but Macuja continued with her investigation. On April 24, 2003 Lisa suspended Camille’s dance rehearsals.

Macuja also stripped Camille of her scholarship and demanded that she pay P10,000 before she could attend the workshop.

Chavez went to court and was awarded almost P400,000 in moral damages.

The Court of Appeals reduced the damages to P50,000.



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