Sydney explains why it fired Conservatoire chief

Sydney explains why it fired Conservatoire chief


norman lebrecht

July 03, 2015

Here’s an official statement from the university, covering up twice as much as it reveals. Two Con chiefs, both of US extraction, have now been ousted in quick succession. Problem? No problem, says Sydney U.

Conservatium of Music


Statement regarding Professor Karl Kramer

2 July 2015

The University today made the following statement in light of media coverage regarding the resignation of Professor Karl Kramer as Dean of the Sydney Conservatorium of Music.

Concerns about the use of Professor Karl Kramer’s credit card were discovered through the regular oversight processes in place to monitor appropriate spending.

The University took a number of actions including the immediate removal of Professor Kramer’s credit card, imposed protocols in relation to future spending, and referral of the matters discovered to ICAC.

The University commenced a confidential investigation into potential breaches of University policies and sought legal advice in relation to the matter. Prior to the University’s internal processes being completed, Professor Kramer resigned as Dean of the Sydney Conservatorium of Music.

Our understanding is that ICAC will not be taking any action in relation to the matter.

The Vice-Chancellor, Dr Michael Spence, today expressed his deep disappointment about the matter, in particular for the distraction it creates from the excellent work of the Conservatorium’s students and staff.


  • RW2013 says:

    The Sydney Con is jinxed.

  • Robert Fitzpatrick says:

    Where in any of the school’s statements does it say that KK was fired? Also the investigating governmental group (ICAC) chose to take no action. Interesting to note the impressive list of rejected leaders although Glazunov had a bit of experience leading a conservatory. I hope they find a qualified Australian musician/administrator to lead them forward during the centennial year. This is my last comment on this non-story.

    • norman lebrecht says:

      He resigned while awaiting results of investigation. In Anglo-Oz parlance that reads: jumped before he was pushed.

    • John Porter says:

      Agreed. He wasn’t fired. This looks like the opposite. A very successful guy in these positions of a 25 year career who probably didn’t want to deal with some bean counters. The CON is fully funded by the government. If these expense issues were big enough to fire, then they would have likely been big enough to act upon. Of course, neither of these things happened.

      It’s a said moment in a good career when a journalist takes a tabloid approach to blackening someone like Karl Kramer’s career, describing him as being fired, when nothing of the sort happend. If usual journalists standards were applied here, the piece would simply say departed CON executive had expense irregularities.

  • Teresa Lavinoff says:

    The man is filth.