Published: Wed, August 14, 2019
Entertaiment | By Paul Elliott

San Francisco Opera Cancels Domingo Concert

San Francisco Opera Cancels Domingo Concert

The news agency reported that the Madrid-born tenor and opera director allegedly harassed young women who were starting their careers, offering jobs in exchange for sexual favors and professionally punishing those who refused his advances.

The opera singer Plácido Domingo has been accused of sexually harassing several women over a number of decades.

Three women told the outlet Domingo, 78, "forced wet kisses" on them, while one claimed he stuck his hand down her skirt.

In addition, half a dozen other women said he had made suggestive overtures to them that made them feel uncomfortable and nearly three dozen other singers, dancers, orchestra musicians, backstage staff, voice teachers and administrators who said they witnessed inappropriate behaviour or knew that Domingo sexually pursued young women.

The 78-year-old Domingo is one of the industry's most powerful figures and more than three dozen people in the opera world told the AP that his behavior has always been an open secret.

Some of the women also told AP that they believe their decision to reject Domingo's advances also "adversely impacted their careers".

"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", continued Domingo.

In an acknowledgement that the #MeToo movement has shifted expectations for men in positions of power he added, "I recognize that the rules and standards by which we are - and should be - measured against today are very different than they were in the past".

In the spirit of the Me Too era many praised the move by saying it was "high time" he was held accountable and calling the accusations in the report "strong".

On Tuesday, the Philadelphia Orchestra and San Francisco Opera announced they would cancel upcoming performances featuring the star, regarded as one of the greatest opera singers of all time.

Patricia Wulf, who sang with Domingo at the Washington Opera, was the only one of the nine to go on the record, and said she was uncomfortable by his asking her each and every night if she had to go home after work, and by his trying to enter her dressing room uninvited.

The accusers who spoke to the AP - all but one of whom requested anonymity - said they had feared speaking out previously would kill their careers due to his huge standing.

Famous tenor Placido Domingo has been disinvited from performing at the Philadelphia Orchestra opening night concert in September, just hours after AP released an explosive report accusing the singer of sexual harassment.

EW has reached out to Domingo's representatives for additional comment. They engaged in "heavy petting" and "groping", she said.

None of the women could offer documentation, such as phone messages, but the AP spoke to many colleagues and friends in whom they confided. "He was touching my knee", she said, adding that they drove to his apartment near the opera's Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, where champagne was waiting.

Another said, "I felt like prey. How do you say no to God?" Domingo appears to be the latest high-profile public figure to become embroiled in a sexual harassment scandal after similar accusations were leveled against actors, athletes and politicians in the USA and beyond in the wake of the #MeToo movement.

Opera star Placido Domingo says allegations he pressured women into sexual relationships in exchange for career advancement are "inaccurate". "They're not going to fire him - they'll fire me", she remembered telling him.

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