Many children take an interest in theatre. The transition from playing make believe to acting can be very easy and enjoyable for some. Oftentimes, parents will help their child’s budding interest by enrolling them in a children’s theatre designed specifically to allow minors to act. Unfortunately, this sometimes places the children in a compromising position with an adult who will take advantage of that.
The Children’s Theatre Company of Minneapolis is facing its eighth underage sexual abuse case. Erin Nanasi, a former child actor, filed the lawsuit with the Hennepin County District Court.
Nanasi claims she was sexually abused by Stephen Glenn Adamczak, who was a sound technician and instructor, in 1981 to 1982, when she was about 15 years old. Adamczak is deceased.
The first allegations against the theatre occurred in the 1980’s and resulted in the conviction of its founder and former director on three counts of criminal sexual conduct. That same year, Adamczak was charged with abusing children sexually, but was acquitted.
Nanasi filed the case under the Minnesota Child Victims Act, which suspended the statute of limitations for child sex-abuse lawsuits no matter how long ago the offense occurred.
“Being a student at Children’s Theatre was very complicated,” Nanasi’s statement said. “On the one hand, we were privileged to be accepted into a nationally renowned children’s theater program. We were honored, we were special and we were envied. On the other hand, we were prey. We were told we were safe while being groomed, molested, and raped by our instructors and mentors.”