Just in: Anna Netrebko is cancelled in Russia

Just in: Anna Netrebko is cancelled in Russia


norman lebrecht

April 01, 2022

The State Opera and Ballet Theatre in Novosibirsk, Siberia, has cancelled a June concert by Anna Netrebko, officially over her ‘condemnation of the actions’ of Russia in Ukraine.

The theatre said: ‘Yesterday, the artist made a statement condemning the actions of our state. Living in Europe and the opportunity to perform at European venues turned out to be more important for her than the fate of the Motherland.

‘Today is not the time to sacrifice principles for more comfortable living conditions. Now is the time to make a choice. The theatre decided to refuse the organizers the right to hold the concert.’

Since much in this conflict is being conducted with smoke and mirrors, this announcement may not be what it seems.

It could be that friends in Russia are seeking to revive Netrebko’s career abroad by pretending she is non grata at home.

It could also be a warning to her from powerful friends to tone down her public statements.

Or it could just be another casualty of truth.

Whatever it is, we give it to you verbatim.




  • horbus rohebian says:

    Oh just ditch the woman – everywhere. Plenty of fine singers in need of work and her time is up professionally anyway.

  • Bloom says:

    The righteous Westerners and the righteous Russians joining forces against Netrebko. Who says that hatred cannot build a bridge? United we stand.

    • Judit Meszaros says:

      You are so right. Today the trend is to destroy as many people as possible; from both sides. There was never so much hatred in the world as today. No wonder the world in which we live. So sad.

      • Una says:

        Yes, if you can’t unite in small things in life and appreciate the other, then no hope in time of war. Has always been the problem in Northern Ireland because of hatred. People just seem to love and enjoy destroying others in life.

      • Judd Holt says:

        Both sides? If someone launches an offensive against innocents, is that not worthy of condemnation? Are we to allow the uncivil free license to practice their evil?

  • YetAnotherComment says:

    Coming from Russia, I won’t be surprised one bit they canceled the concert because they have some ideological moron in charge of that theater. I hope my fellow Russians, especially ones abroad, take note and once this is over, ensure that they’ll reap what they saw and there won’t be “business as usual” with current active collaborators of the regime.

  • Gustavo says:

    Ah yes, the poor victim.

    No mercy.

    She put herself in this position.

    • Perspective says:

      No mercy….

      Who are you and how entitled do you feel?


    • Dr. Shirley Rombough says:

      Gustavo, you are wrong. It is so difficult to be an artist of note these days. No one can feel secure, even one of Netrebko’s stature. She is a Russian, one torn between her loyalty to her home country and the human values of support for the innocent victims of an unprovoked war. She is still a soprano of established talent and worth. She has tried to do the right thing and say the right thing. Apparently that has made her
      persona non grata in the world of Russian opera. Combine that with the petty jealousies directed her way by lesser singers.
      There is so much hatred and divisiveness these days. And we can lay that at the feet of one Donald trump, who is gratified when artists quarrel. The best thing for the US and the world is if he were to exit the world stage.

    • Nielu Minnaar says:

      Although been born as Russian… she made a statement for what is right..
      I think that was a very brave and honorable gesture of her.

      Despite the fact that she may loose the concert…and (may be future implications as well) for having a opinion against the Russian government. This was not to been taken lightly…but may be took her some time to consider all the implications…and yet she made the statement :
      Mi Salute Anna

      And she is still a above avarage ..a gifted (superior) artist…

    • Just saying says:

      You’re being sarcastic, right? lol

  • John Borstlap says:

    Especially hilarious is the phrase ‘the fate of the Motherland’, as if the Motherland is threatened by anything else than its own regime.

    • Tamino says:

      The motherland is threatened by the abusive father. Common family psychology.

    • Ballerina says:

      John Borstlap, are you a model person from a model country which always had an ideal government , which never been involved in the war? I’m amazed that many people are not even trying to imagine themselves in a similar situation. Most people are cowards. You need so much bravery to speak out in such situation.

  • Giora says:

    She is just the queen of opportunism!!

  • Gustavo says:

    The phrase “more comfortable living conditions” implies that they are feeling uncomfortable in their own Motherland.

    How can that be?

    • Fliszt says:

      She’s plenty comfortable in the motherland – Russia is very comfortable if you have money and powerful friends

  • James Weiss says:

    The best of all possible worlds: she’s welcome absolutely no where.

    • Kurt Garmaker says:

      I rather like Netrebko.. some of the things she does with her voice.. i.e pushing wobble now and then can be easily stopped . She was reviewed by a well known vocal coach who said that she can sing correctly when she chooses to.. that she still has the range when she doesn’t try to sound like a dramatic.. which she is not. She is a lyrical soprano. And I love her voice when she behaves.

  • Dave says:

    The Met’s reaction commented on in Guardian is good. She needs to say a lot more considering her previous conduct – how didn’t she know Putin is a deranged, paranoid psychopath long before this war? And she should say it now.

  • Norina says:

    This thought of Mr.Lebrecht seems to me the real cause:
    “ Since much in this conflict is being conducted with smoke and mirrors, this announcement may not be what it seems.
    It could be that friends in Russia are seeking to revive Netrebko’s career abroad by pretending she is non grata at home.”

    • Lilia says:

      You don’t know how things currently work in Russia if you state this. It could be true for western logic, the way things work here. But in Russia currently everyone is pushed to make a choice and punished for any statements that don’t support the regime. There are people in charge of theatres, universities, schools etc making sure everyone who disagrees gets out… as “Betrayer of Motherland”. Sounds very extreme, almost ridiculous. But this is how things are in Russia right now.

  • JackofAll says:

    Damned if you do, damned if you don’t…

  • David M. West says:

    “Motherland” “Fatherland” sounds like 1939 all over again, I’m assuming Russia is transporting Ukrainian “refugees” to Siberia…

  • Karl says:

    She tried to be diplomatic and split the difference. Now she can’t work anywhere. Maybe she can get a roll in a new Sharknado film…

  • Dave says:

    Perfectly possible. It’s why she must utterly repudiate Putin and his obnoxious retinue NOW.

  • Heather Cole says:

    And today’s date is — ?

  • Ms.Melody says:

    I don’t think anybody is pretending. There is an incredible amount of hatred on YouTube directed towards her. The same tone-deaf fans who pronounced her a Goddess and the Pride of Russia 2 weeks ago are now accusing her of high treason and choosing her comforts over her motherland. By the same token, Matsuev and Gergiev are being praised as the men of principle and character. She would do well to lie low, say nothing and wait.
    And, hopefully, contemplate retirement from opera. That would be a bonus.
    I just hope her family does not suffer.

  • Rita Rink says:

    I didn’t know there were so many conspiracy theorists on Slipped Disc.

  • Hmus says:

    The minute you see a term like Fatherland, Motherland or Homeland, you know you are being lied to.

  • MB says:

    Why are classical musicians and orchestras getting caught up in politics? Their influence outside of the rather small world of classical music can’t be that great.

  • Harpist says:

    if she would have been more proactive she would have still had a nice career in the West but she hesitated. Career in the West gone she realized to late and made a statement that didn’t go over on the other side so now…
    Well, she can always teach.

  • Norfolk diva says:

    Who cares. .she is an opera singer and thats it.

  • sandu PESTESI says:

    seems that artists are not supported and promoted based on Quality and Achieved artistry… ,, next, painters, sculptors, Digital Artists, instrument players, quartets or choirs , church singing… kindergarten kids… Fishermen… golfers or soccer players … Do not listen .. resist a bit to those Anti-social Tyrants … speak up… stand your ground…Amen…

  • Jackoff Smiroff says:

    In Soviet Russia the State Opera boo’s YOU!

  • Stuart Wilkie says:

    The Danes and Europeans were condemning her for not speaking out and cancelled her, now this. It is perverse to politicise artists in these situations, as music is the antidote to war. Think instead of a Gernan tenor in WW1 singing a Christmas carol, Stille Nacht. The Pearl Fishers duet, with Kaufman and Hvorostosky as how art can bring nations together, not in war.

  • Donn Rutkoff says:

    If she truly is disgusted finally with Putin, better late than never. I’ll probably never hear her live in San Diego. But her Zerlina 20 years ago in San Francisco was great.

  • Marcus Crompton says:

    One thing is for sure, this terrible war is not the fault of any musician. Baseless speculation about her motivation is unfair. I can’t imagine that making a public statement concerning Putin will have been am easy decision to make and that choice at least should be respected.

  • mtg says:

    “It could be that friends in Russia are seeking to revive Netrebko’s career abroad by pretending she is non grata at home.” – the amount of hebetude among Netrebko’s opponents is incredible. No other artist or even no other person has hade so many idiotic conspiracy theories about themselves being constructed in the last weeks as her.

  • IP says:

    Maledetta, disperata,
    non avra pieta da Vlad.

  • Ballerina says:

    I’m amazed how evil many of those who commented here. Whilst sitting on the sofa, imagine yourself being talented and strong enough to sacrifise as much, and to work as hard to make such a remarkable career, to be admired all over the world, including the country of origin. Anna is just an opera singer, not a politician at all. She is not responsible for any war conflicts, get your dirty hands off her. Remember , the Great Art of classical music is to UNITE PEOPLE!

  • Nanorama says:

    Oh goodness, she doesn’t get to go to Novosibirsk. How will she survive it:-)

  • horbus rohebian says:

    I wonder what she and the ghastly Gergiev make of the latest charges of genocide against their beloved leader? Oh, I forgot, she doesn’t do politics…