James Levine denies accusations of sexual abuse as “unfounded”

Posted on: December 8, 2017

“James Levine, the famed conductor and former music director of the Metropolitan Opera, issued his first response Thursday evening to accusations that he sexually abused several men decades ago when they were teenagers or his students, calling them ‘unfounded,’ ” writes Michael Cooper in Friday’s (12/8) New York Times. “ ‘As understandably troubling as the accusations noted in recent press accounts are, they are unfounded,’ he said in a written statement…. After the first accusations began to emerge over the weekend, the Metropolitan Opera suspended its four-decade relationship with Mr. Levine on Sunday, and asked an outside law firm to investigate his behavior. Four men told The New York Times that Mr. Levine sexually abused them decades ago” at a music school and a music festival where Levine was a conductor and instructor. “Mr. Levine made it clear in his statement that he hopes to resume conducting…. ‘My fervent hope is that in time people will come to understand the truth, and I will be able to continue my work with full concentration and inspiration….’ When asked about the statement, Peter Gelb, the general manager of the Met, said, ‘It’s a sad state of affairs, but of course our investigation has to continue.’ ”

Posted December 8, 2017