Carnegie Hall said Thursday that the prominent Russian conductor Valery Gergiev will not conduct the Vienna Philharmonic in concerts scheduled for Friday and Saturday nights and Sunday afternoon. A spokesperson for the hall said the change was made "due to recent world events," but declined to elaborate.

Gergiev is among the world's most prominent conductors, but his close ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin threatened to overshadow the concerts. On Facebook, protests outside the hall were being planned for Friday night.

Also out is Russian pianist Denis Matsuev, another Putin supporter, who was scheduled to perform with Gergiev and the Vienna Philharmonic on Friday.

Stepping in to conduct all three concerts is Yannick Nézet-Séguin, familiar to New York music lovers in his roles as music director of the Metropolitan Opera and the Philadelphia Orchestra. Now appearing as soloist in Friday's concert is Seong-Jin Cho, an award-winning South Korean pianist.

Update: In addition, on Friday evening Carnegie Hall said that two concerts scheduled for May 3 and 4 by Gergiev and the Mariinsky Orchestra, a prestigious Russian institution based in St. Petersburg, would not take place as scheduled. The hall again cited "recent world events," and also "ongoing challenges related to the global COVID-19 pandemic." The concerts will not be rescheduled. WQXR will not broadcast the Vienna Philharmonic concert live Friday as previously reported, due to last-minute artist substitutions. Instead, the concert will be recorded and aired sometime in the near future. We've updated the article to reflect this change. The name of the substitute soloist was also added.