Retired singer details alleged harassment by Plácido Domingo
Plácido Domingo has spent decades at the pinnacle of the world of opera. But his soaring tenor voice has long been accompanied by a backstage chorus of stories about his treatment of women.
Now eight singers and one dancer have told the Associated Press they were sexually harassed by Domingo. Six others told of suggestive overtures that made them uncomfortable.
“In my business, he was like God,” said retired opera singer Patricia Wulf.
She is the only one of the alleged victims who agreed to reveal her identity. Wulf starred with Domingo in the Washington Opera in 1998 and says he did the same thing after every performance.
“He would come up to me very close to my face and very clearly say, ‘Patricia, do you have to go home tonight,'” Wulf said.
She had heard the rumors that Domingo relentlessly pressured women to sleep with him.
“I don’t think he wanted to play dominoes or cards. I feel very sure it was sexual harassment,” she said.
Wulf said she said no every time and a male colleague who witnessed the interactions backs up her account. Domingo was so powerful, she thought that reporting his actions then would be futile.
In a statement, Domingo said the allegations against him are “inaccurate” and said “I believed that all of my interactions and relationships were always welcomed and consensual.”
The Los Angeles Opera, where he is now the director, said it will hire outside counsel to investigate the allegations. Meanwhile, orchestras in Philadelphia and San Francisco have cancelled upcoming appearances by Domingo.
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