Ravinia Festival cuts ties with James Levine

Boston Symphony Orchestra music director James Levine conducts the symphony on its opening night performance at Tanglewood in Lenox. Mass. New York's Metropolitan Opera says it will investigate allegations that its

New York's Metropolitan Opera suspends conductor James Levine after sex abuse accusations

The Met was in crisis mode Monday after The New York Times published interviews with three men who said Levine sexually abused them when they were teenagers.

One of Levine's accusers, Ashok Pai, also spoke to The Associated Press in recent weeks but declined to tell his story on the record at the time.

The statute of limitations for a potential sex crime in IL expired nine years before the alleged victim came forward against Levine in 2016, reports the Post.

"This first came to the Met's attention when the IL police investigation was opened in October, 2016", Gelb said in a statement.

News of his suspension jolted the opera world, where Mr. Levine is considered one of the finest conductors ever, and raised questions about what was known by the Met and other institutions that employed him over the years. The first report of the allegations, in the New York Post, was published not long after the performance.

Another alleged victim, James Lestock, said he had his first encounter with Levine in 1968 when he was a 17-year-old music student in MI, according to the Times. He conducted Verdi's "Requiem" Saturday - a live, global radio broadcast that could well prove to be his last Met appearance.

Later Monday, the Chicago Tribune reported that the Ravinia Festival was cutting all ties with Levine, who was music director for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra's summer residencies at the music venue north of the city from 1973 to 1993.

The Met's General Manager Peter Gelb states."This is a tragedy for anyone whose life has been affected".

Another delicate challenge for Republicans: Reconciling House and Senate tax bills
Mr Corker had attempted to add $350bn in tax increases to the Senate's tax bill - a proposal that was ultimately rejected. The House and Senate still have a ways to go before they put a tax bill on President Donald Trump's desk.

As of Monday afternoon, there had been no comment from Levine or his representatives.

In fact, his heavy work load as music director of the Metropolitan Opera, in a historic 40-year tenure that lasted from 1976 to 2016, allowed Levine little in the way of free time to accept invitations as guest conductor at Orchestra Hall during those decades. At that time, Anthony Bliss, then the Met's executive director, wrote a letter to a board member about unspecified accusations about Levine that had been made in an unsigned letter.

"We do not believe there is any truth whatsoever to the charges", Bliss wrote.

Levine is a beloved figure in the industry but has faced rumors of these sorts in the past - so much so that he addressed them in a 1987 interview.

A decade later, more rumors circulated in Germany, when politicians and media outlets debated his appointment to become the music director of the Munich Philharmonic, beginning in 1999. Mr. Gelb said Mr. Levine had denied the accusation, and the Met had chose to await the outcome of the police investigation before taking action.

"I think the general feeling is of anguish", Ms. Phillips said. But at the time the Met took no action.

After media reports were posted online Saturday, the Met launched its own investigation. "As important as Jim has been as part of the company's fabric, he did step down as music director two seasons ago, and the company has already imagined life without him".

Latest News