Symphony director hits out over contract renewal

By Mo Yan-chih  /  Staff reporter

Sat, Dec 01, 2012 - Page 4

Taipei City Government’s Department of Cultural Affairs has decided not to renew the contract of Taipei City Symphony director Huang Wei-ming (黃維明) in the wake of a sexual harassment scandal involving a well-known figure in Taiwan’s artistic community, Hsu Po-yun (許博允). Huang yesterday accused the department of damaging his reputation.

The case is currently being investigated after a female vocalist in the symphony in September accused Hsu of sexual harassment at a private gathering, saying that Huang, who also attended the gathering, had helped cover up the matter.

Huang, who finished his three-year term as director earlier this year, dismissed the accusation and said that the vocalist had told him that she would not file a complaint with the city’s sexual harassment prevention committee, under the Department of Social Welfare.

The department held a review to discuss Huang’s contract last week, deciding not to renew it due to his poor administrative skills and failure to follow procedures.

At a press conference accompanied by an independent Taipei City Councilor Lin Rui-tu (林瑞圖), Huang yesterday stressed his neutrality in the scandal involving Hsu, accusing the department of not renewing his contract over the case.

“The review committee did not give me a chance to make clarifications before making their decision. The department ignored my expertise in the field and forced me to leave the symphony out of prejudice against me,” he said.

Deputy commissioner of the department Lin Hui-feng (林慧芬) dismissed Huang’s accusations insisting that the decision had nothing to do with the harassment case.

Lin said the committee did not renew Huang’s contract because of his lack of administrative skills. A total of 58 of 87 symphony members also filed complaints that Huang had not followed correct procedures when appointing symphony members.