N.Y. Metropolitan Opera fires James Levine over s*x abuse claims:
New York’s Metropolitan Opera has fired eminent conductor James Levine, following an internal inquiry found “credible evidence” to support claims he s*xually abused young male musicians.
Mr Levine, who denies the allegations, was suspended in December when they were made public.
The conductor, now 74, was music director at the Met for 40 years.
He retired for health reasons in 2016 but had continued to operate with the opera as music director emeritus.
“The investigation uncovered credible evidence that Mr Levine had engaged in s*xually abusive and harassing conduct both before and during the period when he worked at the Met,” the opera house said in a statement.
It stated there was also proof that the conductor abused and harassed “vulnerable artists in the early stages of their careers”.
The Met said more than 70 people were interviewed during its investigation.
Four men have accused Mr Levine of s*xually abusing them decades ago. Some say they were teenagers at that time.
An Illinois police report, seen by the New York Times, said one of the alleged victims claimed that the abuse started in 1985 when he was 15 and Mr Levine was 41 and continued until 1993.
The conductor has previously called the accusations “unfounded.”
“As anyone who truly knows me will attest, I haven’t lived my life as an oppressor or an aggressor,” he said in a statement.