Former longtime classical music critic Anne Midgette was scheduled to deliver the commencement speech at the Ohio Institute of Music (CIM) this May. Earlier this week, she withdrew from this opportunity when she learned of the Title IX investigations that were launched in April of this year because of allegations against Carlos Kalmar, principal conductor at CIM.
The allegations stemmed from one of Kalmar’s course evaluations. Vivan Scott, CIM’s Title IX Coordinator indicated this is not the first time that [she] heard his name – detailing inappropriate behavior of varying degrees. Midgette’s withdrawal in solidarity with CIM students prompted more perspectives to come forth.
In addition to his CIM position, Kalmar serves as the principal conductor for the Grant Park Music Festival in Chicago and previously served as the music director of the Oregon Symphony. A 2009 profile by Portland Monthly characterized him as a “megalomaniac” who “treats musicians like peons.” The article also referenced an incident back in 2006 when Kalmar unceremoniously fired the symphony’s longtime principal flutist; an action that eventually led to the voluntary departures of six other musicians.
In his statement to cleveland.com, Kalmar’s attorney, James Wooley, said his client “has never been accused of wrongdoing in his impeccable 40-plus year career,” adding Kalmar “has been improperly identified in connection with a possible Title IX matter.”
Ohio Institute of Music spokesperson, Kathleen Drohan, indicated, “We are not going to go into detail about any personnel issues, but as with any situation like this one, CIM will conduct a thorough and fair investigation. We have retained an outside, independent party to conduct this investigation. To protect the process and privacy of all involved, we do not plan to comment any further.”
The investigation is still in its early stages and the institution has not yet announced a replacement for its 98th Commencement Ceremony.
Under the federal regulations, Kalmar is presumed “Not Responsible.” From a legal perspective, Vivan Scott’s statements are concerning, as she has already given credibility to the Complaint at issue, alleging that this is not the first allegation of inappropriate conduct. Questions must be raised about whether the Institute is capable of conducting the fair and impartial investigation they are required to conduct in light of Ms. Scott’s comments.
If you have questions regarding your rights in Title IX proceedings, or you have been subjected to or accused of, sexual misconduct, sexual assault, dating violence, or sexual harassment on campus, please call Friedman Menashe Nemecek & Long, LLC, in Ohio and Columbus, Ohio at 888-694-4645 for a free initial consultation.