Opera singer is violently mugged in Dallas

Opera singer is violently mugged in Dallas


norman lebrecht

October 06, 2013

John Boehr was walking to a Carmen rehearsal on Thursday afternoon when he was set upon by two men who slammed a brick into his face. They ran off with his gym bag, which contained $15 and his Carmen score.

Boehr, 31, required stitches to his head and was badly bruised. The baritone is making his Dallas Opera debut as Morales in Bizet’s opera.


john boehr


  • Una says:

    I’ve been there in that position myself and it’s awful getting beaten up like that, and on my own doorstep too. The guy got £12 and a book on Birgit Nilson! Does make other things in life seem to trivial after that.

  • Gary Carpenter says:

    So there’s someone in Dallas going around asking people if they ‘wanna score…’.

    Hope Mr Boehr is OK and that it didn’t hurt his voice.

  • Nicolas Hartwood says:

    The United States and particularly its cities are dangerous and not like being in free societies, where one can just take a stroll. In the U.S. one looks over ones shoulder and walks quickly and avoids being alone. The crime statistics there are far in excess of developed Western countries, which, even though they have decreased over the past years, are still way above other Western countries. Mr. Boehr was lucky, as guns are everywhere in the United States, particularly in Texas, so a brick in his face may have needed stitches, but is better than a bullet to the head, which is an everyday occurrence in the violent U.S. travellers be warned, as I personally know of two people attacked in a similar manner, one in Washington and the other in Boston.

    • Anne says:

      I don’t live in the US so I’m in no position to argue. However, I’d just like to add that my brother-in-law and his family lived in Fort Worth, not far away, for years and never had a problem or knew anyone who was a victim of violence. Perhaps they were lucky.

      Visited them a few times, didn’t seem a bad place. Impressive new theatre.

      • Una says:

        I don’t live in US either. At the time when they got me, I lived in Central London where there were people around and life around me, coming back from the opera. It’s not just America but everywhere. The more wealthier the area, the more likely it’s going to happen as those who think they should have the same wealth but haven’t, or who are envious of someone else’s better-off lifestyle, are prone to burgle as well as mug in the those more well-off areas.

    • Donald Wright says:

      Crime rates are considerably higher in the UK than they are in the US, as cited in numerous studies, e.g., http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-25671/Violent-crime-worse-Britain-US.html. Unlike Mr. Hartwood, I’ve lived in the US for over six decades, and only in big cities. I walk or run every day, at all hours of the day and night, and have never experienced any problem, nor has anyone I’ve ever known. Somebody has been watching too much American television, which I’d willingly concede is a great against humanity.

      • Donald Wright says:

        Oops. A word got left out. I meant in the last sentence to write “a great crime against humanity.”

    • JJC says:

      The picture you paint, Nicolas, is perhaps a little too dark. I have lived in NY City for 40 years and have never had a problem or even the hint of one. The only mugging I have ever received was on the Paris Metro. Generalizations have their place, but beware of laying it on too thick.

    • DrewX says:

      Says somebody who knows literally nothing about the United States other than what he watches on TV. My goodness. You must learn to control your wildly uninformed opinions, or at least not share them in such a public forum where you are more likely to be embarrassed.

  • At great risk of being thought to be both petty AND churlish (when I mean neither; more like a playful word lover’s tweak), I wonder if all muggings aren’t violent just by way of their very nature?

    • MWnyc says:

      Not necessarily. If a mugger pulls a knife or gun on you and but doesn’t actually shoot or stab or hit you before you give up your money, it’s arguably not a violent mugging even if it is a forcible one.

      Poor John Boehr suffered actual violence, not just the threat of it.

  • robcat2075 says:

    We need fewer dragoons in the operas and more dragoons on the street to keep order.

  • I have now lived in New York City for 25 years. When I first came I was very afraid of being alone in the evening. Actually, the people in New York look after everyone else. Yes, they are busy walking quickly, but luckily I have never had a problem. If you are going to be a woman alone at 3:00 am, that may not be the case, but I am quite comfortable to live here, to be able to take buses, taxis, or walk. The latter is the way I go mostly unless I am going very far from my apartment. When we had a couple of times when I have been here when there were serious problems–“no electricity” therefore we had to walk up and down flights of stairs. The New Yorkers however help others in such situations even if you were never friends with your neighbors. New York is a great place to live.

  • Marvin Friedman says:

    It is ironic that one who is starring in an R-rated opera (for violence) is mugged for real, and

    for that I am truly sorry, Mr. Boehr. And yes Michael Scott all muggings are violent. I think

    that the argument is not about violence as Nicolas would have us believe, but a very poorly disguised attack on the U.S. You know in some countries, the above comments made by

    Nicolas would land him in jail or worse, never to be seen again.

  • Lloyd L. Thoms Jr.. Wilmington, Delaware says:

    How is he? Is he going to be able to perform? We all wish him the best.