Saturday, June 22, 2013

Security Concerns Force Renée Fleming To Cancel Lebanon Concert

(Photo: Andrew Eccles/Decca Classics)
"American soprano Renee Fleming, who was scheduled to open the Baalbeck International Festival at the end of June, has canceled a festival official said Friday, citing the deteriorating security conditions. The news surfaced as the organizers of Lebanon's most famous summer music festival mull over plans to relocate the event from the ancient Roman-era temple complex because of spillover violence from Syria's civil war. The change of venue from Baalbek, where the annual music festival is usually held under the towering columns of the Temple of Jupiter, is the latest fallout from Syria's civil war. This month a barrage of 18 rockets and mortar rounds fired from Syria hit Baalbek, about 15 kilometers from the Syrian border. Over the decades, Baalbek has been known for its Roman-era ruins and the international festival under the towering columns that attracted stars like jazz singers Ella Fitzgerald and Nina Simone." [Source]

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