Kanye West‘s one-time backup dancer has shared a story of the time he saved her from being sexually harassed during a performance.
In a clip that began circulating on Friday (November 17), an Australian woman shared the story of her experience after she appeared as a ballerina when Ye performed at Australia’s Splendour in the Grass in 2011.
In the video, she explained how some of the rapper’s crew began to harass her at the show’s after-party and how eventually he stepped in to put a stop to it.
“Of all the crazy headlines that always go up about Mr. Kanye West, I will always have a personal soft spot for him,” she began. “I genuinely think he’s a good dude and that’s because of a personal experience I had with him.
“I used to be a background dancer for Mr. Kanye West many, many years ago. It was when he came to Australia for the Splendour in the Grass show. And he came to town and he hired like 20 Australian girls to be his ballerinas.
“Now, one night after the show, we went back to his penthouse – all of us dancers and his crew – and we went for the after party. A bunch of us were out on the veranda, so there was like, Kanye, the two ballerinas that he traveled with – the female ballerinas – and then he had like a bit of a posse that came around and traveled with him. Kanye was inside on his laptop, I don’t know, doing something and a bunch of us were out on the veranda like dancing and drinking and all that sort of stuff.”
An Australian dancer talks about the time Ye protected her from sexual harassment on set.
"Ye is a genuinely good dude and I'll always have a soft spot for him" pic.twitter.com/GvksH2OdXP
— Donda Times (@dondatimes) November 17, 2023
She continued: “Now we were all sitting around and a bunch of the guys that were like Kanye’s little posse were like, standing around and they were like, dancing and twerking and they’re like, ‘Blah, blah, join in! Join in!’ And I was like, ‘Oh no, I’m okay. I’m just sitting here just relaxing, just chilling.’
“And out of all the girls I think I was probably the thickest, right? So I don’t know, I’m generalizing here, but I think that the Americans liked thick girls and they were honing in on me like, ‘Come on, dance! Twerk! Come on!’ And they were full on shaking their bum like, trying to get me to do what they wanted to do.
“And one of Kanye’s dancers, she was grinding on one of the guys and I was like, ‘I don’t really wanna do that.’ It was a lot of pressure, like I could feel the walls closing on me. I felt really, really uncomfortable. I kept saying no and they’re like, ‘Come on! Come on! Come on!’ And I kept saying no and they kept coming in and I was literally getting to the point where I was like, I feel really unsafe here. There was a bunch of really intimidating dudes like, honing in on me, asking me to like dance and stuff.
“Then out of nowhere, Kanye literally like bursts through them and was like, ‘Bro she said no!’ And I was like whoa! And he was like, ‘She said no, so stop asking her to do it alright?’ And they were like, ‘Okay, sorry bro!’ and they like backed up.
“And he came and sat next to me and he was like, ‘Look, if you don’t wanna do it, that’s fine. They’re just being dicks. You don’t to do anything – just have fun chilling!’ And I was like, oh my God! In that moment I felt really, really unsafe – like there was a bunch of guys asking me to do something that I didn’t wanna do and Kanye told him to back off!”
She concluded: “So of all the things that I see about him, at the crux of it all, I think he’s a good dude. Maybe he does some crazy shit, but I will always have a soft spot for you, Ye.”
Meanwhile, Kanye West continues to dig his heels in over his antisemitism controversy, swatting away the allegations that he doesn’t like Jewish people in flippant fashion on a new song.
On Thursday (November 16), a snippet of an unreleased track surfaced online. The video appears to have been recorded in Saudi Arabia, where Ye is currently working on his upcoming album with Ty Dolla $ign, among other projects.
While Kanye’s lyrics are somewhat faint due to the footage being recorded from afar, he can be heard rapping: “How am I antisemitic? I just fucked a Jewish bitch.”
Kanye West began spewing antisemitic rhetoric late last year following the backlash to the “White Lives Matter” shirts he debuted at his Yeezy Season 9 fashion show in October.
In various interviews, public appearances and social media posts, he praised Adolf Hitler and vowed to go “Death Con 3 on Jewish people”, while also disparaging George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement.
West was subsequently dropped by a number of creative and commercial partners, most notably adidas. The termination of their lucrative Yeezy partnership saw Kanye’s $1.5 billion net worth get slashed to around $400million.
He was also suspended from major social media platforms, with X (formerly Twitter) freezing his account after he posted an image of a swastika inside the Star of David.
West’s bigoted outbursts have had even larger and more serious real-world consequences, with The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) linking dozens of antisemitic incidents in the U.S. to the rapper’s remarks.
Kanye apologized for some of his comments in an interview with Piers Morgan in October last year, saying he was sorry for the “hurt and confusion” that he had caused.