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Accusations of harassment against Placido Domingo deemed credible – report

Domingo had ‘denied all allegations of unwanted contact and maintained that all his interactions were consensual’.

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Opera singer Placido Domingo was subject of an investigation (Laszlo Balogh/AP)

Opera singer Placido Domingo was subject of an investigation (Laszlo Balogh/AP)

Opera singer Placido Domingo was subject of an investigation (Laszlo Balogh/AP)

Tenor Placido Domingo engaged in “inappropriate conduct” with multiple women over the three decades he held senior positions at the Los Angeles Opera, an investigation commissioned by the organisation has found.

Investigators said 10 women accused the star of engaging in inappropriate conduct between 1986 and 2019 and have deemed the accusations credible.

The findings did not detail any of the allegations, but said the “level of discomfort reported by the women varied, ranging from some women stating they were not uncomfortable to others who described significant trauma”.

The six-month investigation, conducted by outside lawyers, also found “no evidence that LA Opera ever ignored, failed to address, or covered up sexual harassment complaints”, a summary of the findings said.

Placido Domingo has worked at the Washington Opera and helped found the LA Opera in the 1980s
Placido Domingo has worked at the Washington Opera and helped found the LA Opera in the 1980s (Adam Davy/PA)

The accusations echo those of a separate independent investigation released two weeks ago by the American Guild of Musical Artists, the US union that represents opera performers.

Both investigations were launched after the publication of stories last year in which multiple women accused Domingo of sexual harassment and abusing his power.

Domingo, 79, has been regarded as one of the greatest opera singers of all time and a key power broker in the industry.

He served as general director at Washington Opera from 2003 to 2011 and helped found LA Opera in the 1980s before becoming an artistic adviser, then artistic director and finally general director from 2003 until his tenure was cut short by the allegations last year.

The LA Opera investigation, conducted by the law firm Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, said Domingo was one of 44 people interviewed and that the singer had “denied all allegations of unwanted contact and maintained that all his interactions were consensual”.

The report added that investigators “often found him to be sincere in his denials but found some of them to be less credible or lacking in awareness”.

It also said that investigators “found no evidence that Mr Domingo ever engaged in a quid pro quo or retaliated against any woman by not casting or otherwise hiring her at LA Opera”.

Nancy Seltzer, a spokeswoman for Domingo, said he had no immediate comment on the findings.

PA