Gergiev removed as EIF President

Published: 28 February 2022
Reporter: David Chadderton

Valery Gergiev Credit: Alberto Venzago

Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Edinburgh International Festival has "asked for and accepted" the resignation of Russian conductor and opera director Valery Gergiev as Honorary President.

Moscow-born Gergiev is general director and artistic director of the Mariinsky Theatre, chief conductor of the Munich Philharmonic and artistic director of the White Nights Festival in St. Petersburg.

EIF released the following statement:

"The board of trustees of the Edinburgh International Festival has asked for, and accepted, the resignation of Valery Gergiev as Honorary President of the Festival. Edinburgh is twinned with the city of Kyiv and this action is being taken in sympathy with, and support of, its citizens."

This announcement follows the cancellation of the remaining performances of The Russian State Ballet of Siberia, which is in the middle of a tour of the UK, some of which were cancelled over the weekend, along with a planned visit to the Royal Opera House of Moscow's Bolshoi Ballet in summer.