James Levine Fired by Metropolitan Opera Following Sexual Misconduct Investigation

James Levine Fired by Metropolitan Opera Following Sexual Misconduct Investigation

James Levine Fired by Metropolitan Opera Following Sexual Misconduct Investigation

New York's Metropolitan Opera has fired eminent conductor James Levine, after an internal inquiry found "credible evidence" to support claims he sexually abused young male musicians.

Levine was suspended by the Met in December pending the investigation, after he had been accused of molesting a teenage boy in the northern suburbs.

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The Boston Globe reported earlier this month that three of Levine's accusers said the conductor abused them when they were teenagers.

He retired for health reasons in 2016, but had continued to work with the opera as music director emeritus. The Met said at the time it had hired Robert J. Cleary, a former US attorney now in private practice with the law firm Proskauer Rose, to investigate the allegations.

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The investigation found that Levine exerted huge control over this group, dictating all aspects of its members' lives and coercing them into unwanted sex acts. At the time of the investigation's launch, General Manager Peter Gelb told the New York Times that the Met was first made aware of the initial charges in October 2016 when the police report was made, though at the time they did not hear further from the police and Levine had denied the actions in the report.

Levine is one of dozens of powerful men in multiple industries brought down by allegations of sexual misconduct brought to light in the wake of the Me Too movement and the Harvey Weinstein sexual-assault scandal in Hollywood. To that end, the investigation "found that any claims or rumors that members of the Met's management or its Board of Directors engaged in a cover-up of information relating to these issues are completely unsubstantiated".

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Levine has struggled with health problems including Parkinson's disease in recent years.

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