Acclaimed conductor James Levine was fired Monday by the Metropolitan Opera after an investigation uncovered credible evidence of “sexually abusive” conduct.
In a statement on its website, the Met said it was “terminating” its relationship with Levine as Music Director Emeritus and artistic director of its young artist program.
Levine was suspended by the Met in December pending the investigation of allegations from four accusers detailed in The New York Times.
The accusers said Levine had sexually abused them when they were teenagers. At the time, Levine denied the allegations against him.
The Met’s statement said that its investigation found Levine “engaged in sexually abusive and harassing conduct towards vulnerable artists in the early stages of their careers.”
The company says “it would be inappropriate and impossible for Mr. Levine to continue to work at the Met.”
The 74-year-old Levine had been a towering figure in the company’s history, ruling over its repertoire, orchestra and singers as music or artistic director from 1976 until he stepped down under pressure two years ago.
The Met says claims its management or board had covered up information of Levine’s conduct were unsubstantiated.
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.