Opera superstar Placido Domingo accused of sexual harassment

Placido Domingo speaks during a news conference about his upcoming show Giovanna d’Arco in Madrid

Placido Domingo speaks during a news conference about his upcoming show Giovanna d’Arco in Madrid Placido Domingo

Nine women have accused Plácido Domingo, one of the leading figures in the world of opera, of sexual harassment.

Six other women allege that Domingo, 78, made them feel uncomfortable with his sexual propositions, and dozens of other people in the opera business claimed that they witnessed the multiple Grammy award victor being sexually inappropriate towards younger women. She said that he undressed her, undressed himself, and that they had a session of "heavy petting" and "groping".

Domingo, considered one of the best opera singers of all time, allegedly put his hands up the skirts of one woman and kissed others on the mouth without their consent.

As well as the nine women who have come forward, apparently "half a dozen others" have also come forward to suggest Domingo's behaviour, including repeatedly asking them to go on a date, has made them uncomfortable at one time or another. Dozens of other singers, dancers, orchestra musicians, members of backstage staff, voice teachers and an administrator spoke to AP, having observed such inappropriate behavior, including incessant attempts to contact certain women at their homes and insisting upon private meetings.

Domingo, 78, remains one of opera's biggest stars, commanding sell-out audiences around the world. "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".

The only company in the U.S.to cancel a performance featuring Domingo is the Philadelphia Orchestra; the opera star was to appear in the company's opening day concert.

Domingo told the AP he finds the accusations "deeply troubling and, as presented inaccurate", adding that "I believed that all of my interactions and relationships were always welcomed and consensual".

A dancer who worked with the superstar in several cities said a flirtatious Domingo called her late at night on and off for about a decade in the 1990s, leaving brazen messages she would listen to in shock with her husband.

She said she tried to avoid being alone with him so as not to suffer professional repercussions, but eventually "gave in" and slept with him twice because she "ran out of excuses". The company said in a statement, "LA Opera will engage outside counsel to investigate the concerning allegations about Placido Domingo".

According to the AP, seven of the nine women who came forward with accusations have said they felt their careers adversely affected by their rejection of Domingo's advances.

"When I clearly was not going to have sex with him, he just walked me to the elevator and went back to his room". He has also been artistic director and later general director at the Washington National Opera.

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