James Levine, the maestro who conducted for New York’s Metropolitan Opera for more than 40 years before allegations of sexual abuse and harassment ended his career in 2018, has died in Palm Springs at age 77, it was reported Wednesday.
Levine died on March 9, according to the New York Times, which said Levine’s physician confirmed the death, but did not give a cause.
Levine conducted 2,552 performances at the Met from 1971 until 2016, when Parkinson’s disease ended his run.
He became music director emeritus but was suspended and then fired in March 2018 following reports that he had engaged in sexual improprieties with younger men for decades, the Times reported.
Levine subsequently filed a defamation suit in which he “clearly and unequivocally denied any wrongdoing.”
According to reports, he had planned to make a comeback in Florence, Italy, on Jan. 11, but that concert was canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic. After his March 2018 firing, he never conducted again.