The litany of sexual misbehavior is unending and reaches into every strata of society. It’s a time of reckoning and settling of scores, too. The rich and famous are having to account for their actions. In the midst of this revolution in accountability there needs to be an opportunity for targets of these allegations to have an opportunity to respond before Judgment is rendered.
Excerpted from San Francisco Chronicle 8.13.2019
The San Francisco Opera has canceled a concert appearance by Plácido Domingo planned for Oct. 6 in the wake of allegations of sexual harassment leveled against the operatic luminary.
A news story on Monday, Aug. 12, by the Associated Press reported claims by nine women of unwanted sexual behavior by Domingo going back decades. The accusers, eight singers and a dancer, said that Domingo, 78, had pressured them into sexual relationships and retaliated against them professionally if they refused his advances.
A statement from the company said, “Though the alleged incidents reported did not take place at San Francisco Opera, the Company is unable to present the artist on the War Memorial Opera House stage. San Francisco Opera is committed to its strong anti-sexual harassment policy and requires all Company members to adhere to the highest standards of professional conduct. San Francisco Opera places a great priority on creating a safe and secure environment where everyone can focus on their work and art, and in which colleagues are treated with respect, dignity and collegiality.”
In a statement released to the AP, Domingo said, “The allegations from these unnamed individuals dating back as many as thirty years are deeply troubling, and as presented, inaccurate.
“Still, it is painful to hear that I may have upset anyone or made them feel uncomfortable — no matter how long ago and despite my best intentions. I believed that all of my interactions and relationships were always welcomed and consensual.”
The charges have prompted other companies to respond as well. The Philadelphia Orchestra on Tuesday withdrew its invitation to have Domingo sing during its opening-night concert on Sept. 18.
The Metropolitan Opera, where Domingo is scheduled to sing two roles this season, issued this statement: “We take accusations of sexual harassment and abuse of power with extreme seriousness. We will await the results of the investigation into Plácido Domingo’s behavior as head of the Los Angeles Opera before making any final decisions about Mr. Domingo’s ultimate future at the Met. It should be noted that during his career at the Met as a guest artist, Mr. Domingo has never been in a position to influence casting decisions for anyone other than himself.”
A statement from the LA Opera, where Domingo is general director, reads in part: “LA Opera has robust human resources policies and procedures in place. In accordance with those policies, LA Opera will engage outside counsel to investigate the concerning allegations about Plácido Domingo.”