Dear Norman Lebrecht :
It is indeed wonderful that you have allowed so much space in your blog
for the problems with the Brazilian Symphony Orchestra. What is currently happening here in Rio de Janeiro –where I have resided since 1973 and was the first oboe of the orchestra until 1997 or 24 years–resembles unsavoury procedures in the musical world in the 1930s.
“crime”of getting old or older, calling for re-auditions of veterans
despite their long-time experience and survival in the orchestra and
encouraging scabs to take the place of discarded musicians.
What is the worst “crime”in my view,is Maestro Minczuk and the
Brazilian Orchestra’s use of the Youth Orchestra to replace the
“ÖSB”(Brazilian Symphony) for the first three months of season with
some members of the orchestra–who are not rebelling vs.
Minzcuk–playing in he first stands of the youth orchestra.
In the UK and USA ,a court order would probably bar the younth
orchestra from taking over the initial part of the season from the
professionals. In Rio de Janeiro however(and not necessarily Brazil)
Today,Friday,as I write you Rio’s major newspaper O Globo hasa picture
of the musicians who refuse to take the audition awaiting in the front
of the Labour Ministry for a reconciliation hearing–which never
occurred because neither the Maestro or administration appeared.
We are living in the epoch of internet which has overthrown
dictatorships in the Arab world and hopefully via this same magical
communication ,Maestro Minzcuk and his cohorts will receive their
proper due if these 58 musicians are sacked.
Can the unions in the UK, USA, Canada,etc bar Minzcuk from conducting and
holding auditions? Can other measures be taken? Our fears here in Brazil
are that the draconian measures which have begun in the Brazilian
Symphony will spread to all the 56 orchestras in this growing
nation,threatening thelivelihood of local musicians.
Brazilian National Orchestra