Sweden’s Royal Academy of Music has expelled Valery Gergiev who was a foreign member of this institution. They say: « He was excluded on the basis of his unwillingness to take a stand against Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, a stand that the Academy has demanded of him in view of his well-documented close relationship with President Vladimir Putin. The decision is the result of extensive preparatory work initiated by the Academy’s Board of Governors. » It was a fully unanimous assembly that took the decision on expulsion.

« In Sweden there is freedom of expression, but this situation is unique, » says Fredrik Wetterqvist, the Academy’s permanent secretary. « The Academy should not be associated with a person who so unequivocally supports a regime that threatens nuclear war. We will not adopt the same strategy as Valery Gergiev, namely silence. »

Gergiev was elected to the Academy in 2011 on musical merit. A foreign member has no voting rights in the Academy. The foreign membership is considered an honorary one.

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