What’s behind cancellation of Seoul Philharmonic’s U.S. tour

Posted on: March 26, 2015

“When the respected Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra announced this month that it was canceling its United States tour set for April, it cited fiscal woes,” write Choe Sang-Hun and Michael Cooper in Sunday’s (3/22) New York Times. “Left unsaid were the lurid allegations of sexual harassment and financial improprieties that have rocked the orchestra recently, culminating in a police raid of its offices here. The infighting is threatening to slow the progress that the orchestra has made since Myung-whun Chung … became its music director in 2005.… The first casualty of the chaos was a tour that was supposed to take it to Los Angeles; San Francisco; Seattle; Ann Arbor, Mich.; and Chicago in April.… But the backstage troubles … go back much further. They burst into public view in December, when an anonymous statement claiming to be from orchestra employees … called for the resignation of the president of the orchestra, Park Hyun-jung, claiming that she had abused women on the staff with insults, sometimes sexist, since she joined the organization in 2013.… Officials in Seoul also began looking at Mr. Chung’s pay and perks, and in January city auditors raised questions.… Orchestra officials would not comment publicly on the recent events, citing pending investigations.”

Posted March 26, 2015