SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Conductor Charles Dutoit’s name has become so toxic following accusations of sexual assault that Canada’s national broadcaster has stopped saying his name on air when radio stations play his music.
“At this point, we are no longer crediting Mr. Dutoit as conductor,” said Emma Bedard, spokeswoman for Canadian Broadcasting Corp.
Dutoit served as music director for the Montreal Symphony Orchestra from 1977-2002. He made scores of recordings with the orchestra that make up an important part of the national broadcaster’s Canadian repertoire on classical music station CBC Radio Two. But the new policy applies to all CBC stations.
“CBC Radio Two is where these recordings are most often played, but our approach would be the same regardless of channel,” Bedard said in emailed statements. Her comments were first reported by the Montreal Gazette.
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The policy took effect after The Associated Press reported on Dec. 21 that four women, including three opera singers and an orchestra musician, accused Dutoit of sexual assault. The world-renowned conductor denied the accusations, but eight major orchestras promptly cut ties with Dutoit or distanced themselves from him.
“We began changing how we refer to these recordings at the end of December, and will continue for the time being to simply credit the Montreal Symphony Orchestra,” she said.
On Thursday, the AP published a story with six new accusations of assault against Dutoit, including one musician who accused him of rape. Dutoit denied the latest accusations, saying in a statement he was “appalled and sickened” by the rape allegation which he called a “bewildering and baseless charge.”