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Accused Russian conductor pulls out of Montreal concerts

Mikhail Pletnev in performance


Mikhail Pletnev has withdrawn from concerts with l'Orchestre symphonique de Montreal next week because of a conflict with bail terms set by a court in Thailand, where the acclaimed Russian conductor and pianist is under investigation for alleged sexual assault of a minor.

Pletnev's house in the coastal resort town of Pattaya was raided by police in July. Late last week, Pletnev, who denies the accusations against him, applied to a Thai court for an extension of the bail that has allowed him to perform outside the country during the investigation.

The court extended bail to Sept. 27, one day before the first of Pletnev's two concerts with the OSM and pianist Andre Laplante. The OSM announced that Pletnev will be replaced by Russian conductor Dmitry Sitkovetsky.

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Pletnev has returned to Russia for concerts this summer with the Russian National Orchestra, of which he is artistic director. However, he recently cancelled dates with the orchestra at the Edinburgh Festival and the BBC Proms in London.

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