The Maggio Musicale Fiorentino has announced that the upcoming performances of “La Damnation de Faust” have been canceled due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
The performances, which were expected to take place on Jan. 11, 13, and 16, 2021, were set to be conducted by James Levine. It would have marked his return to the podium following a 2017 report in which he was accused of sexually harassing underage children.
The performances were heavily publicized with Alexander Periera telling Musical America “I always try to protect people that are demonized. Rightly or wrongly, that’s how I am. He has been silent for such a long time, after contributing so much to music, and I think that the musical world needs to hear him.”
“La Damnation de Faust” was set to star Michael Spyres, Marianne Crebassa, and Ferruccio Furlanetto. New dates are expected to be announced in the future.
The company also announced that the Jan. 17 concert conducted by Levine and featuring Thomas Hampson and Hanna-Elisabeth Müller has been postponed until further notice.