Will The Real Vatican Organist Please Stand Up?

Classic Arts News   Will The Real Vatican Organist Please Stand Up?
Musicians planning to embellish their resumes should take note of the case of Massimiliano Muzzi, an Italian musician denounced as a fraud for claiming to be the pope's organist.

The London Times reports that the 34-year-old Roman toured the U.S., Europe, and Australia purporting to be the Vatican's organist. But while Muzzi was performing in Pope Benedict XVI's native Germany, suspicions were aroused and James Edward Goettsche, the American who has been the real Vatican organist since 1989, was alerted. Goettsche is now considering legal action.

Muzzi blamed his agent for false press materials, adding he was "absolutely not responsible" for the deceit and had "no need of such ruses to win professional engagements," according to the Times. The Vatican said either Muzzi or his agent had shown promoters forged, official-looking documents regarding his supposed Vatican connection.

Italian media report that Muzzi is considering legal action against his U.S. concert organizer, Phillip Truckenbrod. According to Muzzi's lawyer, Truckenbroad reworked Muzzi's resume and inserted phrases such as "Vatican organist" to beef it up. The lawyer added that Muzzi has told the promoter to remove references to the Holy See from his resume and apologized to the Vatican and its legitimate organist.

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