The New York Philharmonic Scandal: A Hidden Sexual-Assault Scandal

In a shocking revelation, the New York Philharmonic finds itself embroiled in a sexual-assault scandal that has rocked the classical music world. Accusations of misconduct involving two prominent musicians have come to light, leading to their dismissal from the orchestra. Let’s delve into the details of this disturbing situation.

The Accused Musicians

  1. Matthew Muckey: A trumpet player, Muckey was dismissed from the Philharmonic in 2018 due to unspecified misconduct. His career trajectory had been promising until these allegations surfaced.
  2. Liang Wang: As the principal oboist, Wang held a prestigious position within the orchestra. However, he, too, faced accusations of misconduct and was let go in 2018.

The Mysterious Past

For years, a veil of secrecy surrounded the Philharmonic’s actions. In 2018, both Muckey and Wang were fired, but the reasons remained undisclosed. Then, in 2020, without much public explanation, they were reinstated. New York Magazine’s investigative report shed light on the alleged misconduct, including a harrowing accusation from French-horn player Cara Kizer.

Cara Kizer’s Allegations

Kizer revealed that she was drugged and sexually assaulted by one of her colleagues. The crisis at the Philharmonic extended beyond Kizer’s case. Another female musician felt pushed out of the orchestra for supporting Kizer, and additional women came forward with their own allegations of misconduct.

The Independent Investigation

In early 2018, the Philharmonic initiated an independent investigation into Kizer’s claims. The organization hired a former federal judge to examine the allegations against Muckey and Wang. Alongside Kizer’s accusations, the orchestra learned about an earlier rape allegation against Muckey and unrelated allegations of sexual misconduct against Wang. After a thorough six-month investigation, the Philharmonic concluded that both men had engaged in misconduct warranting their termination.

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The Union’s Decision

Muckey and Wang continued to deny any wrongdoing and appealed to Local 802 of the American Federation of Musicians. Shockingly, the union ruled in their favor, leading to their reinstatement. The Philharmonic expressed profound disappointment with this decision. Both the orchestra and Local 802 have since taken steps to reform their grievance processes and address workplace misconduct.


Cara Kizer and Philharmonic trombonist Amanda Stewart, who supported Kizer’s allegations, left the orchestra. Kizer now teaches French horn and still performs with other orchestras, while Stewart teaches trombone and plays with the St. Louis Symphony.

Conclusion The New York Philharmonic’s sexual-assault scandal serves as a stark reminder that even esteemed cultural institutions are not immune to such issues. The orchestra’s commitment to preventing and addressing discrimination, harassment, and retaliation remains crucial as it navigates this troubling chapter in its history.

Frequently Asked Questions About The NY Philharmonic Scandal

  1. What led to the dismissal of Matthew Muckey and Liang Wang from the New York Philharmonic Scandal?
    • Both musicians faced allegations of misconduct, which prompted their termination from the orchestra.
  2. Why were Muckey and Wang reinstated after being fired in 2018?
    • Despite the serious allegations, the union ruled in their favor, leading to their reinstatement.
  3. How did Cara Kizer’s case impact the Philharmonic?
    • Kizer’s accusation of sexual assault triggered an independent investigation and shed light on a broader crisis within the orchestra.
  4. What steps have the Philharmonic and Local 802 taken to address workplace misconduct?
    • Both organizations are reforming their grievance processes to prevent and address instances of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation.
  5. What happened to Kizer and Amanda Stewart after leaving the Philharmonic?
    • Kizer teaches French horn, while Stewart teaches trombone and performs with the St. Louis Symphony.
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