Disgraced Levine: Met Opera delivers coup de grace

Disgraced Levine: Met Opera delivers coup de grace

New York's Metropolitan Opera fired famed conductor James Levine after an investigation found he engaged in "sexually abusive and harassing conduct". Days later, another man told The Times that Levine had also abused him when he was in his 20s. After that, Mr. Levine held an emeritus role.

Earlier during the investigation, Levine denied the allegations stating the accusations were "unfounded" and that "I have not lived my life as an oppressor or an aggressor".

The Met says in a Monday statement that its investigation found Levine "engaged in sexually abusive and harassing conduct towards vulnerable artists in the early stages of their careers".

Levine has been associated with the Met Opera for more than four decades, stepping down in 2016 as music director.

Consequently, "it would be inappropriate and impossible for Levine to continue to work at the Met", Efe quoted the statement as saying.

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The investigation, lasting more than three months, included interviews with more than 70 people and was launched by the Opera after complaints against Levine made late previous year.

In December, the Met said it was suspending its relationship with longtime conductor James Levine pending an investigation into multiple allegations of sexual misconduct against him. Many of his performances were televised by PBS, and singers rearranged their schedules to appear in his performances or even to audition for him. In addition, he was music director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra's Ravinia Festival from 1973-93 and the Boston Symphony Orchestra from 2004-11, and chief conductor of the Munich Philharmonic from 1999-2004.

His power waned only because of health problems.

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. 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. "The artists of the Metropolitan Opera, like workers in every industry, deserve a safe place of work".

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