Zurich Opera admits investigating its artistic director

The director of Zurich Opera, Andreas Homoki, has commented on the premature departure of artistic director Michael Fichtenholz, as reported yesterday in Slipped Disc.

He told Christian Berzins of CH Media: ‘The Zurich Opera House issued a directive in August 2018 on how to deal with allegations in relation to harassment and abuse of power.

‘In such cases, the clarifications are carried out by an external specialist department. All persons involved are assured of confidentiality in this process. Such a process was also pursued in relation to allegations against Mr Fichtenholz. The Zurich Opera House initiated investigations without delay after becoming aware of the allegations and called in the external specialist unit…. Those involved were informed about the content and results of these investigations in accordance with the guidelines. The process was ended amicably. No further steps, especially no legal ones, were requested from any side.’


share this

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on google
  • I’m not at all shocked that he was investigated. Sadly, I’m also not shocked that no legal steps were taken.

  • The process was ended a m i c a b l y ?

    “Amicably” suggests a far larger degree of concord than the German original, “einvernehmlich”.
    “Einvernehmlich” actually means “by mutual agreement”.
    It has chilly undertones: when someone is fired, the communiqué usually states that he is leaving “einvernehmlich”, by mutual agreement. Mutual, though usually somewhat one-sided.

    • It exactly goes “im gegenseitigen Einvernehmen”, and it simply translates into “we have fired him/her”. However, this applies to Germany – in Switzerland they perhaps use other euphemisms.

      Other classics:

      Wegen unterschiedlicher Auffassungen zur Weiterentwicklung des Hauses …

      … stellt sich neuen Herausforderungen …

  • I don’t understand. They butcher Opera and they get paid, nicely. Then they pester an occasional female (or male), and heaven comes tumbling down.

  • From the Aargauer Zeitung in Lucerne


    Zurich Opera House: Abrupt departure of the Zurich Opera Director – internal message puzzles Sudden departure of the Zurich opera director – internal communication puzzles First there was a case against the opera director for abuse of power, now he is leaving Zurich: The Zurich Opera House worries the opera scene.

  • We endlessly read about the power, sexual abuse where the money involved. But how about getting to know what is going on actually in the theaters orchestras. How people get mentally abused by their older colleagues! No one talks about it as younger people are afraid to talk openly about the psychological pressure. It might harm their future jobs as networking between the theaters can affect the reputation forever. When are we going to investigate psychological pressure and abuse existing for many years? Or are we only interested in money and sex, leaving many people silent?

  • This all strikes me as a complete rumour house. If we actually knew the facts then perhaps we could have properly informed opinions. As it stands, nothing was published and as someone who has worked in Switzerland a lot, I know that a condition of most contracts is that if something illegal has occurred then you are dismissed immediately. Clearly that hasn’t happened here so we should be a it careful jumping to conclusions no?

  • >