UPDATE, 2:30PM: LuPone has provided a further response. Read it below.
Three-time Tony winner Patti LuPone has given up her membership in theatrical union Actors' Equity Association, according to a tweet the Company star posted October 17.
"Quite a week on Broadway, seeing my name being bandied about. Gave up my Equity card; no longer part of that circus. Figure it out," writes LuPone, likely referencing a recent incident that saw a cast member of Broadway's Hadestown reprimanding an audience member from the stage for filming the performance when she was actually using a captioning device due to hearing loss. LuPone has infamously reprimanded audience members from the stage on at least two occasions, stopping a performance of the 2008 revival of Gypsy because of flash photography and physically taking an audience member's in-use cell phone during a performance of Off-Broadway's Shows for Days.
Membership in Equity is, in nearly all cases, required to perform on Broadway and at many professional theatres across the United States. Dropping her membership in the union likely signals the end of LuPone's professional stage career in the U.S., though it would not hinder her ability to appear in concert and cabaret performances nor non-union productions. The move would not prevent LuPone re-joining the union in the future should she choose to, and she could also perform in union productions via a seldom-used provision that allows non-members to pay nominal dues to cover the union's contract administration without becoming a full member.
Contacted for a further comment, LuPone shared the following: "When the run of Company ended this past July, I knew I wouldn’t be on stage for a very long time. And at that point I made the decision to resign from Equity." LuPone's representatives shared that the Tony winner will not have any further statement and will not be speaking about this further. Requests for comment from Actors' Equity were not returned at the time of publication.
LuPone's long Broadway career includes Tony wins in 1980 for Evita, 2008 for Gypsy, and 2022 for Company. Known for her high-flying belting and Juilliard-trained acting prowess, she has also appeared on Broadway in Working, Oliver!, Anything Goes, Noises Off, Sweeney Todd, Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown, and War Paint, among others.