The Israel Opera
The Israel Opera Hadas Paroush / Flash 90

French-Israeli conductor Frederic Chaslin refused to take part in a performance of Puccini’s La Rondine on Saturday evening, because the Israeli Opera management would not allow him to honor the victims of the terror attacks in Paris.

Chaslin reportedly wanted to have the national anthem of Israel – Hatikva – played before the performance began, and to say a few words in memory of the victims of the attacks.

Management refused.

Chaslin told Army Radio that he expected the Israeli Opera to do exactly what the symphony orchestras of London and New York had done. “If in England and the US, the conductor gave a speech in memory of the victims, I do not understand why this is the one place where one can't do that.”

The opera's management said that it is “pained by the catastrophe and its results, and its heart is with the French nation and the Jewish community.

"In the opera's 30 years of existence it has maintained its routine of cultural activities even in painful days, in which dozens of terror acts were perpetrated, and during wartime. It is the way of the opera, not to allow terror to be victorious and to disrupt the routine of life.”