Israel fest pulls plug on a Wagner opera

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He argued that "there is a difference between the playing of Wagner in private, even in public, and the playing of Wagner by a German orchestra at a state festival." This added dimension, he observed, compelled the management rethink its position

Two weeks ago, Barenboim had rejected calls from festival organizers that he cancel compositions by Wagner, Adolf Hitler's favorite composer.

"The last thing I want [to do] is to hurt anybody's feelings," Barenboim said earlier. "I didn't want anybody who felt unable to hear this music because of the association [with Nazism] to be confronted with it. But people who don't have the association should be able to hear it."