The press is piling on in the day and a half since the Metropolitan Opera announced that James Levine is withdrawing from the fall portion of the company’s 2011-12 season. A few are worth a read, including Zachary Wolffe at the NY Observer, who writes:
Daniel Wakin follows through on yesterday’s breaking news about James Levine’s decision to withdraw from the entire fall portion of the MET season due to a new and serious back injury with a more detailed article just posted to nytimes.com. Again, a number of details leap off the page:
The press release just arrived in my email inbox: “BSO Managing Director Mark Volpe announces that James Levine will step down as Boston Symphony Music Director as of September 1, 2011.” It’s not live on the BSO’s Web site yet, so here are excerpts:
HuffPo reports that Leonard Slatkin and Mitsuko Uchida will cover for Chicago Symphony Orchestra music director Riccardo Muti, who has been hospitalized following a fainting spell during a rehearsal.
James Barron has the details at the NY Times. Maestro Levine’s continuing struggle against multiple illnesses has many of his fans worried, but if there is any good news to come out of this it is that Italian conductor Fabio Luisi, who recently quit as director of the Staatskapelle Dresden, will be leading Tosca and Lulu at the MET. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: he’s one of the most exciting maestros in Europe, and I’d wager that he’d make a hugely favorable impression as a music director on this side of the Atlantic.