Cnn - Opera Star Evgeny Nikitin Cancels Festival Over Nazi Tattoo23 July 2012
Opera Star Evgeny Nikitin Cancels Festival Over Nazi Tattoo
The Russian bass-baritone got the tattoo as a teenager when he was in a heavy metal band. He has since had the ink covered up and explained that it wouldn't actually be on show for his Bayreuth performance in 'The Flying Dutchman'. However, the media has recently drawn attention to online footage showing the Nazi symbol before it was covered and, having discussed the possible backlash on the festival with the organisers, Nikitin has decided to pull out. "That is a problem in Bayreuth", said spokesperson Gunther Philipowski. "Bayreuth has a bad history with the Nazis. It's clear that Bayreuth has to be careful about this terrible part of history and has to take a position against it".
Bayreuth is in tribute to composer Richard Wagner; an alleged anti-Semite from the 1800s who Adolf Hitler was a huge fan of, reports CNN. 38-year-old Nikitin regrets having the tattoo done. "I had the tattoos made when I was young", he said in a statement. "It was a big mistake in my life and I wish I had never done it".
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