Anna Netrebko still wants it both ways

Anna Netrebko still wants it both ways


norman lebrecht

March 02, 2022

The Russian soprano posted this comment on Instagram yesterday:

“As I have said, I am opposed to this senseless war of aggression and I am calling on Russia to end this war right now, to save all of us. We need peace right now.” 

She then took it down.

A person known to be close to Netrebko has informed that statement this remains her personal position, and that she will stand by it even if it costs her support in Russia. Just not on Instagram.

As of yesterday she has withdrawn indefinitely from all performances worldwide.


  • Paul B says:

    How can this be her “personal position” after deleting the post, after the stupid and vague statements before, after posting a photo with Gergiev yesterday (deleted as well), after the horrible stories on instagram naming the “Western people” in a terrible way…
    Give us a break, please!
    AN should move to Russia and stay there!

  • A.L. says:

    That’s what I’ve been saying all along. Aside from her abominable ties to Putin and Gergiev, the woman is not a genuine artist; rather, uses music and her mindless, shallow fanbase to feed her narcissistic self and line her pockets. That about sums up what Netrebko has always been about. There was never any there there.

    • Tamino says:

      And how do you make a living? Selflessly?

    • Thank you A. L. says:

      That’s a clear indictment of the majority of Democrats who perform, attend and support opera along with most of the arts.

      Indeed they are ALL “mindless, shallow fanbase to feed her narcissistic self and line her pockets” just as they did Biden-Harris.

      They did this to THEMSELVES putting both a white privileged male in office and a faux-black who has only betrayed their cultish trust affirming these facts!

      Poor America stuck with no leadership as they drown in skyrocketing oil and food costs along with unaffordable housing and student loan debt they are SLAVES to….

  • Roman says:

    She wrote “I am calling on Russia to end this war right now”. It is already more than the rest of artists said, for example, here:

    Even though she removed it, even though she supported Putin in past, this is already a big step, and the absolute majority of Russian artists don’t do even that. She deserves at least some respect for that.

    Having said that, I want to point out another letter agains war from Russian musicians:

    We, musicians of different generations, students, teachers, employees and graduates of music universities, oppose the military actions of the Russian Federation on the territory of Ukraine.
    This war cannot be justified. No military “peace enforcement” can bring peace – only more death, pain and hatred.
    The Russian World is created by culture, art, literature, music, communication, friendship… It cannot be built with tanks and guns, but it is very easy to destroy it. This is what we are now painfully seeing. War between our countries is a disaster. Not only for Ukraine. But also for Russia. This is a disaster for the Russian world.
    The great Russian composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky was inspired by Ukrainian landscapes – almost every summer he lived with his sister in Kamenka (center of Ukraine). Here he wrote “Swan Lake” and “Eugene Onegin”, “The Seasons” and “Children’s Album”.
    This is just a small illustration of how deeply our countries related. Many of us have relatives, friends, colleagues in Ukraine. It is absolutely inconceivable that our soldiers would shoot at them, that their cities would be bombed by our planes.
    We demand an immediate halt to hostilities and all disagreements to be resolved through negotiations.
    We call on our colleagues from the CIS countries to join these demands. We all need peace.
    No war!

    The list of those who signed it is too big to post it in comment, but you can find it (in Russian) here:

    It is probably worth to post it on SlippedDisc separately, it is an important statement in my opinion.

  • We should stop the denunciation of artists, examine the causes of the war, and use that understanding to help establish peace.

    • James Weiss says:

      Mr. Osborne, just stop. Your continuing appeasing comments are embarrassing. Russia just needs to stop it’s crime against humanity which is what this invasion is. Period. No one is denouncing “artists.” We’re denouncing people who support Putin. Period.

    • Scientist_Timpanist says:

      What childish cluelessness.

    • guest says:

      Mr. Osborne, why don’t you lead by example? Sit down, examine the causes of war, work up a strategy to help establish peace, and communicate the result of your deep cogitations to the countries involved in the conflict. Until then please spare us. No one is denouncing artists. For starters, there isn’t much artistry in dear Anna, secondly, her political views were known before the invasion, there isn’t anything to denounce. Netrebko isn’t the only Russian in the West, plenty of them. Did anyone “denounce” Evgeny Kissin?

  • James Weiss says:

    You make a public statement condemning the war and Putin and you leave it up. It’s that simple. What she thinks “privately” is of no interest. Anything less than that and she should be banned.

    • Jonathan Sutherland says:

      Donna Anna wrote a somewhat identical statement to the Gran Teatre del Liceu Barcelona which was published in a press release tonight:

      “Me opongo a esta guerra sin sentido y pido a Rusia poner fin ahora mismo a este conflicto bélico, para poder salvarnos todos. Necesitamos la paz de manera inminente. Debido a esta situación, considero que, para mí, no es el momento de hacer música y actuar. Por tanto, he decidido dar un paso atrás respecto a mis próximas actuaciones. Es una decisión extremadamente difícil, pero sé que mi público entenderá y respetará esta decisión.”

      Con estas palabras Anna Netrebko expresaba la decisión de “alejarse de los escenarios temporalmente”, y de este modo, el Liceu confirma que la soprano no visitará el Gran Teatre del Liceu el próximo 3 de abril.”

      A rough translation is:
      “I oppose this senseless war and ask Russia to put an end to this war right now, so that we can save all of us. We need peace imminently. Due to this situation, I consider that, for me, it is not the time to make music and act. Therefore, I have decided to take a step back from my next performances. It’s an extremely difficult decision, but I know my audience will understand and respect this decision.”

      With these words, Anna Netrebko expressed her decision to “move away from the stage temporarily”, and in this way, the Liceu confirms that the soprano will not visit the Gran Teatre del Liceu on April 3.

      Surely a case of too little, too late?

  • Dan madigan says:

    An has been supportive of putin for yrs. Anti democratic proceses and flagrantly anti gay.

  • Kween of the night says:

    Canceling Netrebko and and Gergiev won’t force Putin to withdraw. Virtual echo chamber nonsense that only serves to make y’all feel like you’ve done something meaningful. Check your privilege. #leaveannaalone

    • guest says:

      Heaven knows we would gladly let her alone, years ago, had she had the decency to quit the operatic stage, but she pushes herself to the fore with a vengeance.

      If you like to call virtual chamber Gergiev’s cancelling from all his Western positions, suit yourself. That chamber is as big as the entire world minus Russia.

      We actually did something meaningful – we saved money. We don’t pay an average conductor for sloppy conducting, and we don’t pay a sub-par soprano for murdering music. Not anymore.

    • Felix says:

      Totally agree.

  • Olga says:

    Анна НЕПотребко

  • Susanne says:

    Anna doesn’t need Putin’s support, she can make it on her own. She’s a wonderful artist.

    • guest says:

      Anna didn’t get the memo – both memos, actually.

    • MacroV says:

      And she has an Austrian passport. A consistently strong message against Putin and she’d be welcomed in every western opera house.

      • Tamino says:

        Well, so easy to say if it‘s not your home country you are expected to denounce publicly. The Americans have this saying “Right or wrong, my country”. No American artist was banned from anywhere when the Neocon gang in Washington started illegal wars that killed tens of thousands of civilians. These comparisons are always not 100% equal comparisons, but the hypocrisy is real.

  • Tim Walton says:

    What a spoilt great this silly woman is.

  • Tim Walton says:

    My comment just posted should have said spoilt person. How on earth predictive that changed it!!

  • Diarmuid O Se says:

    There has been evident vacillation in her statements, but she has said that she opposes the war. Others haven’t. People who were previously close to the Russian regime must be given a chance to distance themselves from it. Likewise the oligarchs who have criticized the invasion. They are undoubtedly trying to protect their interests. But if such people aren’t offered a way out they will have no incentive to abandon Putin. He will probably eventually fall to Kremlin intrigue with oligarch support. It won’t be an ideal outcome but better than at present. AN has decided to step back, partly to avert calls for her to be boycotted. But she has, even if tentatively, moved to the right side on this. This option must be on offer. It does not mean immediate absolution for previous position, but it encourages others to change sides.

  • True North says:

    Enough with this stupid b**** already. She wasn’t interesting enough to warrant discussion before and she certainly isn’t worthy of it now.

  • Mimi Blum says:

    Bravo Anna! You are a corageous woman. You represent me.

  • Johnny Pea says:

    “You little good for nothing Mimi.”