Opera stops in Hamburg as conductor is rushed to hospital

October 7, 2017 by norman lebrecht


Thursday’s performance of Der Freischütz at Hamburg State Opera was stopped when the conductor, Christof Prick, fell ill and was rushed to hospital.

An 35-minute interval was called. But since no other conductor was available the performance was then abandoned.

Prick, who is 70, is reported to be in a stable condition.

Comments (25)

  1. Una says:

    What a shock for everyone, not least him. Wish him well and speedy recovery.

    1. Kaspar says:

      This Hamburg Freischutz from 1968 hits the target ok. Great cast like a Hammer Horror!

      DVD on amazon FYI.

      1. Jost Miehlbradt says:

        Indeed, what incredible cast!

  2. Cubs Fan says:

    a.k.a. Christof Perick for US viewers. God, we’re so juvenile…

    1. SDG says:

      UK as well! Always thought it was odd. Hope he recovers well.

    2. Olassus says:

      Big mistake to have been talked into that (probably by some dumb London agent). He would have become more famous, and is actually a terrific conductor.

    3. Richard says:

      I wondered. Thanks for clarifying.

  3. CarlosKleiberInHeaven says:

    Christoph Perick is an excellent conductor, one of the very best. We wish him a speedy recovery.

    1. Sue says:

      I love your username!!

  4. Suzanne says:

    How is it possible that at the Hamburg Opera, one of Germany’s largest, no Kapellmeister was on hand to continue the performance??

    1. Larry says:

      Agree with Suzanne…how could there not be an “assistant” conductor (or whatever the title might be) on standby?

      1. Martin Ellingham says:

        More importantly there should have been a Doctor in the House to give him immediate care! If left to the NHS his prognosis might be worse.

        1. From_Hamburg says:

          Of course there was a doctor in the house. Plus two firemen who started CPR immediately and continued their work until the ambulance arrived.

    2. Doc Martin says:

      Rather to the point why was there no actual Doctor in the House. I am a House Doctor as required and they admit me free. I managed to resus the odd stick waver in my time, once near the end of Der Freischutz where it would seem Agathe gets shot!

    3. Seymour says:

      Kapellmeisters no longer exist! They only worked in Court positions. You mean Generalmusikdirektor

      1. Jost Miehlbradt says:

        Well, you should actually only talk about things that you know about. Of course, every Generalmusikdirektor (GMD) is also a Kapellmeister…

  5. Stephen says:

    I once heard an announcer from the Met say (and you won’t believe this), “And now Maestro Perick is on the stand again.” I always thought it was a podium in the USA but that’s what was said.

  6. Jonathan Sutherland says:

    CUBS FAN is indeed correct.
    Puritanical Americans could never grasp a Prick on the podium, although there were certainly many maestros of such mentality.
    I recall Kurt Herbert Adler, long time infallible potentate of the San Francisco Opera contemplating hiring Christof Prick for a production by John Cox.
    He mulled it over.
    “Prick and Cox. Cox and Prick… Nah, even for San Francisco, this would be too much!”.
    The talented Dirigent was encouraged to insert an ‘e’ into his name.
    Gute verbesserung.

    1. RW2013 says:

      Christoph Prick’s sister Katrin Prick has directed a production at the Stuttgart Musikhochschule conducted by Nicholas Kok.
      Auch gute Besserung.

    2. Petros Linardos says:

      Hillarious. I have hard time suppressing my laughter, fearing that my daughter will come and ask me what I am laughing about.

    3. Jost Miehlbradt says:

      “Gute Verbesserung” is a joke in itself…

  7. jonathan dunsby says:

    There was once a performance of Bach Double concerto by Josef Suk and Felix Kok (leader of CBSO)

  8. H Boyle says:

    I once sang an Anglican service with music by William Crotch, John Blow and Frederick Rimmer… in that very order.

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