Reputable conductor withdraws from BBC Proms after ‘assault’ on an opera singer is claimed

The BBC Proms have been cancelled after a renowned conductor allegedly assaulted a singer.

Sir John Eliot Gardiner, 80, allegedly hit William Thomas and called him a “dozy b******” for leaving the stage the wrong way.

Sir John Eliot Gardiner has pulled out of the BBC Proms amid claims he assaulted an opera singer

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Sir John Eliot Gardiner reportedly pulled out of BBC Proms after allegations he abused an opera singerCredit: Getty

His rep said the heat and a change in medication may have led to Tuesday’s clash in France.

Today Sir John, who was due to conduct Les Troyens on September 3, said: “I have decided to withdraw from conducting all remaining performances.

“I make no excuses for my behaviour and have apologised personally to Will Thomas.

“I do so again, and to the other artists, for the distress that this has caused.

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“I have returned to the UK and have decided to withdraw from conducting all the remaining performances of Les Troyens.

“I know that physical violence is never acceptable and that musicians should always feel safe.

“I ask for your patience and understanding as I take time to reflect on my actions.”

Dinis Susa will take his place.

BBC says it takes allegations of inappropriate behavior seriously

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