LA Opera Investigating Harassment Allegations Against Legendary Singer Plácido Domingo
L.A. Opera is investigating sexual harassment allegations against famed opera singer, conductor, and general director of the organization Plácido Domingo. In a statement, an L.A. Opera spokesperson said the organization will be using outside counsel to investigate "the concerning allegations" against Domingo.
Domingo, 78, allegedly tried to pressure women into sexual relationships with job offers, the Associated Press reports. He also would allegedly sometimes punish women when they refused. Domingo has been married to fellow opera singer Marta Domingo since 1962.
The AP cites allegations from nine women, with a half-dozen others saying that Domingo's suggestive overtures made them uncomfortable. Mezzo-soprano Patricia Wulf is the one named accuser, while the others requested anonymity due to working in the business, fearing reprisal, or worry of public humiliation or harassment.
Almost three dozen others told the AP that they witnessed inappropriate behavior by Domingo.
"The allegations from these unnamed individuals dating back as many as 30 years are deeply troubling, and as presented, inaccurate," Domingo said in a statement to the AP. "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. I believed that all of my interactions and relationships were always welcomed and consensual. People who know me or who have worked with me know that I am not someone who would intentionally harm, offend, or embarrass anyone.
"However, 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. I am blessed and privileged to have had a more than 50-year career in opera and will hold myself to the highest standards"
The L.A. Opera's own statement notes Domingo's influence both with L.A. Opera and Los Angeles as a whole for decades.
"Nevertheless, we are committed to doing everything we can to foster a professional and collaborative environment where all our employees and artists feel equally comfortable, valued and respected," the statement said.
Domingo has sung 150 roles in more than 4,000 performances — more than any opera singer in history, according to the AP. He's won 12 Grammys and two Emmys.
KPCC's The Frame contributed to this story.