A well known actor in Eugene’s theater scene has been identified by Rose City Antifa as a neo-Nazi.
A long article on the group’s blog Wednesday, April 18, said Eugene actor Evan James McCarty is involved with such alt-right groups as Vanguard America and True Cascadia and the website Daily Stormer. Under the name Byron de la Vandal, McCarty has regularly used social media to post racist, anti-Semitic and misogynist messages such as “Every single one of your relatives deserved to die in the Holocaust,” the antifa article says.
Asked by email for comment, McCarty writes: “You can fuck off, for one. I don’t talk to journos.”
The article follows a similar outing last year when Eugene and Rose City Antifa identified Eugene businesswoman Bethany Sherman, owner of O.G. Analytical, a marijuana testing lab, as a neo-Nazi supporter along with her husband. She ended up announcing she would have to sell the business.
In both cases, antifa identified as neo-Nazis respected individuals who had been working in largely liberal communities — the marijuana industry last year and, this week, in the theater world.
McCarty has appeared on stage at The Shedd Institute and at Very Little Theatre.
At The Shedd in the past four years he has performed in musicals such as Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, Mary Poppins, Annie Get Your Gun and It’s De-Lovely.
The antifa article claims McCarty has been a board member at VLT, but Scott Barkhurst, a spokesman for the community theater, said he has no record that McCarty was even a member of the organization, much less a board member. In 2016 McCarty did perform in VLT’s production of Spamalot.
UPDATE: VLT issued a statement on 4/20 about McCarty. “It has come to the attention of the Very Little Theatre that Evan McCarty, a past performer on our stage, is accused of being a neo-Nazi. Evan McCarty was a chorus member in a past production at the Very Little Theatre. Evan McCarty is not, and has never been, a VLT member or past board member. We have no knowledge of Evan McCarty’s political views. The VLT will continue to be a welcoming and supportive home to our diverse community, and all those who share our love of live theater.”
James Ralph, executive director of The Shedd, says in an email that he and his staff had been unaware of McCarty’s political beliefs.
“We’ve known and worked with Evan since he was 13 or 14 years old and have never experienced anything like this in our dealings with him,” Ralph says. “He has always acted and spoken professionally, ethically and with complete civility. We wouldn’t have been able to continue working with him if he had behaved himself as a racist, neo-Nazi or white supremacist in his association with us.”
After investigating the antifa claims, Ralph says, he was convinced they were accurate. “By all accounts, the Antifa story points to a true association between Evan and these groups,” he writes. Ralph then decided to sever any future connection between The Shedd and McCarty.
“We are obliged to distance ourselves from a young man we have always considered to be a valued colleague. We have always considered him to be a member of our Shedd family, so this hurts a lot,” he writes. “The Shedd Institute is, at the core of its very being, dedicated to diversity, multiculturalism, accessibility and a generosity of spirit to all people in every part of our community of every background. We’re committed to building community upon those beliefs and values. There is no place for extremism of any kind — on the right or the left — in our world.”