Carlos Kalmar Put on Leave of Absence by Cleveland Institute of Music

By David Salazar
(Photo credit: Michael Jones)

Carlos Kalmar, the principal conductor and director of the orchestral studies at the Cleveland Institute of Music has been put on leave of absence for the remainder of the semester, per reports.

The news comes after students protested the conductor. Per reports, students attended rehearsals without instruments while others sat in the audience to support their colleagues and fellow students. Students also circulated a petition against Kalmar. As a result of the student protests, a Sept. 26 performance, which was to be conducted by Kalmar, was canceled.

In his absence will be Sameer Patel of the La Jolla Symphony and Chorus and Anthony Parnther of the San Bernardino Symphony Orchestra.

Kalmar was previously accused of sexual harassment, but the institution cleared him after conducting an internal investigation.

“We know that this decision will disappoint many—including the faculty members, trustees and alumni who served on his search committee, and our students and alumni, who have been consistent and courageous advocates for Mr. Kalmar’s work to revitalize and elevate our orchestra program to its next level of achievement,” the institution said in an official statement. “We are grateful for his commitment to the conservatory and all that he has accomplished.”

Earlier this year, music journalist Anne Midgette declined an honorary doctorate from the institution in protest of the university’s actions in relation to Kalmar.