Peter Martins, who served as the powerhouse leader of the New York City Ballet for more than three decades, has decided to immediately retire in the wake of allegations of sexual harassment and physical abuse. “I have denied, and continue to deny, that I have engaged in any such misconduct,” said the 71-year-old. Martins added, “I cooperated fully in the investigation and understand it will be completed shortly. I believe its findings would have vindicated me.” Board members were reportedly informed of Martins’ decision Monday evening in a conference call, when they also learned that he had been arrested days earlier on a charge of driving while intoxicated. In all, 24 former dancers have told The New York Times of a culture of intimidation and physical and verbal abuse under Martins’ leadership.
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