Armenian conductor Sergey Smbatyan, 35, has been arrested in his home country together with his father, former Armenian ambassador to Israel Armen Smbatyan, and stands accused of fraud against the state.

According to Armenian news reports, the Armenian General Prosecutor’s Office is accusing Smbatyan of defrauding the state to the tune of around €2.3 million.

As a consequence, the The Malta Philharmonic Orchestra is “suspending its working relationship with Maestro Smbatyan with immediate effect”, a statement says.

“The MPO is following the case very closely to ascertain the facts. A final decision in respect of this case will be taken once the relevant facts and circumstances are ascertained,” the statement says.

Sergey Smbatyan is the Principal Conductor of the Armenian State Symphony Orchestra and the Malta Philharmonic Orchestra, the latter since 1 January 2022.

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