Royal Dutch Orchestra Fires Chief Conductor amid Harassment Allegations

Conductor Gatti attends a news conference in Zurich
Conductor Daniele Gatti from Italy gestures as he attends a news conference in Zurich, Switzerland June 4, 2009. REUTERS/Christian Hartmann

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) 

The chief conductor at Amsterdam’s renowned Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Daniele Gatti, has been fired because of allegations of sexual harassment, the orchestra said on Thursday

The allegations first arose in an article on July 26 in the Washington Post, in which female singers accused Gatti of groping and other inappropriate sexual behavior.

Gatti, who joined the Concertgebouw Orchestra in 2016, could not immediately be reached for comment. But after the Post story appeared, he issued an apology to “all the women I have met in my entire life”, especially those who believed he had not treated them with the respect and dignity they deserved.



“Since the publication of the article in the Washington Post, a number of female colleagues of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra reported experiences with Gatti, which are inappropriate considering his position as chief conductor,” the orchestra said in a statement.

“The Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra has terminated the cooperation with chief conductor Daniele Gatti with immediate effect,” it said.

The accusations have “irreparably damaged the relationship of trust between the orchestra and the chief conductor” and Gatti will be replaced by other conductors in all upcoming concerts, it said.



Gatti is the first international figure in the Netherlands to come under scrutiny by the #MeToo social movement, which has sought to hold accountable male business leaders, politicians and entertainers for sexual misconduct, leading to resignations in major corporations, Hollywood and among lawmakers.

Gatti was accused in the Post article of assaulting two women in his dressing rooms, one in Chicago and one in Bologna, Italy in the 1990s.


(Reporting by Anthony Deutsch, Editing by William Maclean)