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Opera star fired by Mrs Gelb wins unfair dismissal case

March 4, 2018 by norman lebrecht

9 comments.


The Spanish soprano Maria Bayo has won her case against Bilbao Opera for being sacked as Donna Elvira from a production of Don Giovanni in February 2017.

According to El Pais, she was fired at the first rehearsal by conductor Keri-Lynn Wilson, who said she lacked volume.

Bilbao was ordered to replace her lost earnings.

Ms Wilson is married to the general manager of the Met.


Comments (9)

  1. Fred says:

    well mrs geld obviosuly knows more about voices than her hubbie coz indeed bayo never had a powerful voice and now also past her prime….the only question why and who engaged her then anyway?

  2. Cynical Bystander says:

    Of course this has never happened before in the annals of opera? Well, not when it can be tied somewhat tenuously to an ongoing campaign associated with a certain functionary of an Opera House seemingly on its last legs.

  3. Lawrence Kershaw says:

    Very good conductor who knows about singers and has worked frequently at ABAO. I think she also deserves to be called by HER name.

  4. OperaBaritone says:

    This is standard in opera. If one is fired by a company, they must pay the contract unless the artist has somehow breached it. Volume, which should be considered when casting, is not a reasonable reason to dismiss someone. No surprise they had to pay.

    1. MWnyc says:

      Indeed, I am surprised that Bayo had to sue.

  5. Olassus says:

    There is much elegance, vocal and instrumental, in the first section of that Exsultate. Actually this artist has made a number of good recordings over the years and should certainly be up to the challenges of Donna Elvira in Bilbao.

  6. Sam Brown says:

    WHAT on earth has the fact that the conductor is married to Peter Gelb got to do with it?!??!??!!!!

  7. Bylle Binder says:

    I just wonder … Sir Andrew Davis is married to Soprano Gianna Rolandi. Sir Simon Rattle is married to Magdalena Kožená. However, no one ever calls them “Mr Rolandi” or “Mr Kožená”. Perhaps you should grant Ms Wilson the same courtesy of naming her as she wishes too without a reference to her husband? You know the times when a woman was defined by a husband are long gone.

  8. YoYo Mama says:

    I wonder if her conducting doesn’t lack volume and power itself.


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