Odesa Opera Fires Chief Conductor Following Picture with Yusif Eyvazov

By Francisco Salazar

The Odesa Opera’s Chief Conductor Vyacheslav Chernukho-Volich has reportedly been fired. 

The Ukrainian press is reporting that the conductor was fired after appearing in a picture with Yusif Eyvazov, the Baku National Opera’s new director, following a “La Boheme” performance in Azerbaijan.

The picture caused outrage because Eyvazov is married to Anna Netrebko, who the Ukrainian government sanctioned. Additionally, the company noted that Eyvazov has performed in Russia throughout the war.

In a statement, the company said, “The administration of the Odessa National Opera announces the early termination of the contract and the dismissal of the chief conductor of the theater Vyacheslav Chernukho-Volich. The reason for the termination of the contract was the adoption by Mr. Volich of a personal decision, inconsistent with the management of the theater, regarding conducting a performance at the Baku Opera (Azerbaijan Republic), where personnel changes took place the day before and Yusif Eyvazov was appointed to the position of director.”

The theater also noted that his actions were against Ukraine and noted that no representative of Ukraine should be in contact with representatives of the “Russian world” and those who support Russian aggressors.

Following the publication of the picture Chernukho-Volich said he was unaware that Eyvazov had been appointed director of the company and that he had collaborated with the Baku National Opera for more than ten years. Additionally, he noted that Eyvazov had condemned the war in an Instagram post. The chief director said that the picture put the theater at risk.