Daniele Gatti enjoys full rehab in Rome

Daniele Gatti enjoys full rehab in Rome


norman lebrecht

December 02, 2018

The Italian conductor, fired by the Concertgebouw Orchestra in August for impropriety with female colleagues, opens the new season at Rome Opera tonight, in charge of Rigoletto.

The director is Daniele Abbado, Claudio’s son, who talks (below) about men flirting with women inopera ‘as if the opera was being written now.’

The singers are Roberto Frontali, Lisette Oropesa and Ismael Jordi (Duca).

The Italian establishment has rallied round to rehabilitate Gatti’s reputation.


  • John Borstlap says:

    No surprise.

  • Caravaggio says:

    Shameful. If I had been engaged in any capacity for these shows with Gatti among the team I would have quit, as a matter of principle. Oropesa seems to be a thoughtful individual. Why is she not walking away, her dignity intact?

    • Pedro says:

      Because Gatti is not guilty.

      • Caravaggio says:

        Evidently the Concertgebouw, no less, concluded differently.

        • Rgiarola says:

          Why all other intitution should convey with Concertgebouw conclusion? They must their self conclusion based on their own cultural and principles. Concertgebouw isn’t a supreme court.

          • Jhag says:

            The Concertgebouw was simply afraid for their own reputation and finances. Even if was actually just little thing that got blown up accidentally, in the sensation gullible media with its new metoo witch hunt fashion it won’t remain like that. And CO is about to travel to the USA. So, they just feared the press and rather sacrificed Gatti than facing it.

        • Robert Groen says:

          Caravaggio, you old moaner, there is a distinct difference between the Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra as a venerable top ensemble (which it still is) and its management, which sits in the boardroom, far away from the rostrum, worrying about many contemporary issues. Unfortunately music isn’t one of them.

      • Caravaggio says:

        By your standards we should also restore Levine at the Met, Verbier and everywhere else he pleases.

    • Albert Beauchard says:

      Yes, in the world of bourgeois psychic epidemics, making passes at the wrong women is a capital offence.

      • Emil says:

        Ummm…yes, harassing women *is* an offense.

        • Rgiarola says:

          Harassment both sexual and moral are crimes in most countries. However the same countries that demands a court decision before everyone can say it to others. It isn’t a decision by someone calling himself as victim.

    • Thomasina says:

      You blame Ms.Oropesa? I think she isn’t walking away because (as you say) she seems to be a very thoughtful person.

    • Jessica Pratt says:

      I take issue with your comment. Lisette, who earned her place in that production by singing well and working hard does not lose her dignity by staying where she is, holding her head high and doing her job.

    • Sue Sonata Form says:

      This is how the world works now, courtesy of the Left:


      Equal Application of Law
      Individual Responsibility
      Evidence and Facts
      Presumption of Innocence
      Separation of Powers; Precedent; Text =
      Judicial Restraint

      Social Justice:

      Equal Outcomes
      Emotion and Anecdotes
      ‘Believe the Victim”
      Constitutional Policy; ‘living tree’ = Judicial Activism

      Where to you imagine Gatti and others are placed in the brave new world?

  • Mark says:

    If you take issue with Gatti’s conducting then protest the theater. To suggest that a woman should lose her job because of the male’s alleged behaviour, is a serious flaw in logic. Perhaps you need to rethink your priorities.

  • Brian says:

    Shades of Charles Dutoit making a run to Japan to conduct, as recently reported here. There will always be parts of the world that don’t adhere to the same standards of workplace conduct, and where the old patriarchy is more entrenched.

    • Ellingtonia says:

      “There will always be parts of the world that don’t adhere to the same standards of workplace conduct”…..oh, you must be referring to the principle of innocent until PROVEN guilty, but lets not let our prejudice get in the way of due process.

  • Andrew Powell says:

    Gatti also has Otello with the Berlin Philharmonic for three weeks in April.

  • Lulu says:

    Gatti is evidently not guilty. Shame on Concertgebouworkest!

  • MacroV says:

    Even though I think the Concertgebouw was right to fire Gatti, it doesn’t mean I think he should be banned from the profession. Everybody (well, almost everybody) deserves a chance at redemption.

  • william osborne says:

    In Italy, the MeToo movement has had very little effect as the NYT article reports:


    In one of the most notable instances, a 53 year-old woman took a superior who repeatedly groped her to court. The judge told her she was too old to be distressed by his harassment:


    The mindset seems to have consequences. Santa Cecilia may be the patron saint of music, but how often do you hear of living Italian women aside from singers prominent in the international classical music world? Is that not odd for a country so musically gifted?

    But of course, why even mention it in a forum given to reader commentary like on SD?

  • Bruce says:

    To be fair (if we’re interested in that), Gatti was the rare one who issued a public apology, posted here some months back, saying, in effect, that he’d thought all his questionable interactions with women were consensual, and that he felt terrible about it and would try not to do it again — a marked contrast with Levine and Dutoit.

    I feel he deserves some credit for that (although he should expect to be watched very closely in the future).

    • Saxon Broken says:

      Also, he can’t be fired from his engagements in Italy or Germany for getting fired from the Concertgebouw. If they were contracted prior to him losing his job in Amsterdam then there would be no way of removing him from these other engagements (perhaps a reason to “leave quietly” from Amsterdam).

      The attitude of these other organisations will only become apparent when we see if they hire him for new engagements in the future.

  • anon says:

    The Concertgebouw never provided any details or names to justify its very public firing of Gatti. Therein lies the problem.

    It’s about accountability and transparency.

    It’s one thing to quietly let someone go (see NY Philharmonic) and quite another to publicly accuse and fire someone and provide zero public justification.

    It’s called due process and fairness.

    I hope Gatti sues and wins big. And I hope no one of stature takes the job at the Concertgebouw.

    • william osborne says:

      The NY Phil did not quietly let the two players under question go. Their dismissal was big news and reported in many major media outlets. The allegations were rumored to include even a drug rape of a colleague by one of the dismissed players. These allegations and rumors, whether true or untrue, have caused distress in the professional classical music community. I find it unconscionable that they NY Phil has not provided at least some clarification, since it seems to be desperately needed. It stands in stark contrast to the Cleveland Orchestra which published the findings of its investigations.

      I know for a fact that journalists from major papers have tried to report more about this situation in the NY Phil, but they have met with stone-walling silence. It would seem to create the appearance that the NY Phil’s image is more important to them than openly addressing issues of severe sexual violence against women in the profession. Whatever the situation, silence about sexual violence leaves women in danger and helps continue the problem.

    • Saxon Broken says:

      “due process and fairness”

      Er…the Concertgebouw process was fair. The ONLY person who needs to know the process, accusation, and outcome is Gatti. It isn’t a public trial and none of the parties has any obligation to tell you anything.

      (IF the Concerbouw did tell you they would be “in breach of confidence” and could be sued on those grounds by Gatti.)

    • Robert Groen says:

      You may be anon, but your opinions match mine exactly. Gatti deserves better treatment than he received at the hands of the RCO and I hope he gives Amsterdam (,my home town) a wide berth in the future. This city is becoming unsafe on many levels. The RCO, I devoutly hope (never thought I would say that) will have serious problems attracting a future top drawer resident conductor. Until the present RCO management are gone, Amsterdam is, and should be, toxic.

  • anon says:

    I thought the unions in Italy were all powerful!

    Whatever the rank and file of the Opera di Roma really feels about Gatti conducting, it is impossible today to imagine that an entire company could come together unanimously to sign a letter of protest against a conductor, as La Scala did to Muti 30 years ago.

    In Italy, the sin of authoritarianism is far greater than the sin of sexual harassment.

    Gatti is scheduled to conduct the La Scala orchestra.

  • Philip says:

    Look! White men getting away with harassing actual human beings!

  • Giacomo says:

    Breaking from Rome: triumph for Daniele Gatti at the curtain call after “Rigoletto”, with a big enthusiastic and demonstrative standing ovation.
    His conducting of the opera was really impressive.

  • John Borstlap says:

    Misbehavior in Italy is something different from misbehavior in Amsterdam. Also, misbehavior in Russia has totally different consequences when exercised in the Vatican. Etc. etc.

  • Livia Strabacci says:

    Breaking news.
    Daniele Gatti has been named Music Director of Teatro dell’Opera di Roma for three seasons starting from yesterday!
    This engagement has been decided by major Virginia Raggi (in agreement with the national government) and undersigned by the general manager Carlo Fuortes (surely the most powerful Italian intendant).
    Great news for a great conductor.