It Ain’t Over Till the Fat Lady Blows Up

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The fight against terrorism got a little squirrelly in Switzerland in December. Vigilant Swiss police pulled a dawn raid on the five-star hotel room of famed French conductor Pierre Boulez, dragged him out of bed, confiscated his passport and questioned him for three hours. Why did they target the 75-year-old musician, widely viewed as the world’s top interpreter of Igor Stravinsky’s music? Well, back in the 1960s Boulez, always a self-conscious controversialist and pot-stirrer, told an interviewer that opera houses should be blown up as relics of a dead art that deserved to die. Somehow, Swiss police got the notion that this 35-year-old comment made him a potential terrorist threat.

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