Met sacks conductor James Levine over 'credible evidence' of abuse

Met sacks conductor James Levine over 'credible evidence' of abuse

The Metropolitan Opera in New York City on Monday announced on Monday it fired famed conductor James Levine after the conclusions of an investigation into sexual misconduct allegations against him.

It has brought forward the appointment of Levine's successor, youthful French Canadian Yannick Nezet-Seguin, who will become music director with the upcoming season.

Fittingly perhaps, his final Met appearance was conducting Verdi's "Requiem" in December.

Levine, who served as the Met's musical director for 40 years until he retired from that position in 2016, has denied the accusations.

The Met reported, however, that they found no substantiating evidence that the Met's management or its board of directors "engaged in a cover-up of information". Law enforcement officials said a year ago that they would not bring criminal charges against Levine, noting that while the state's age of consent is now 17 - and 18 in some cases - it was still 16 in 1986.

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Chris Brown said that Levine had abused him in the summer of 1968, when he was a 17-year-old student at the Meadow Brook School of Music in MI and Levine led the school's orchestral institute.

The New York Post first reported about a 2016 police report in IL that alleged that Levine abused a boy starting in 1985 when the purported victim was 15.

Levine is one of the most prominent musicians to see his career ended in the #MeToo era, initially triggered by the furor over alleged widespread abuse by Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein. Charles Dutoit, the former music director of the Orchestre de Montreal and a prominent guest conductor around the globe, has also been alleged to be a perpetrator.

Levine has always been one of the most famous maestros in the world of classical music, and for more than 40 years his career has been entwined with the Met, where he served as music director from 1976-2016.

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