norman lebrecht

September 04, 2023

Matthias Schulz, director of the Berlin State Opera, has tried to defuse criticsm of Anna Netrebko’s presence by making her sing in enemy colours.

Here’s part of what he says: ‘Her management confirms she has no plans to appear in Russia Claims that she supported Putin were refuted and subsequently had to be corrected in media reports. Under these circumstances, in our opinion, this artist should be given a chance and not withheld from the audience. As a company, full solidarity with Ukraine is extremely important to us on the one hand, and treating our artists responsibly on the other. Anna Netrebko knows our clearly pro-Ukrainian position. As with other performances, the auditorium for Verdi’s Macbeth will be illuminated in the colors of Ukraine upon entry. As an opera house, we strive with all our strength to enter into dialogue, to connect people in the experience of music, and not to incite them against each other. At this time, our solidarity and compassion go out unreservedly to all those affected by this catastrophe.’

By mrtrv