Breaking: major US soloist boycotts Brazil orchestra

Breaking: major US soloist boycotts Brazil orchestra


norman lebrecht

June 24, 2011

It is reported today in Rio that a leading American soloist has joined the roster of artists who are pulling out of concerts with the Brazil Symphony Orchestra, where half the musicians were sacked in a row over re-auditions.

The new name on the boycott roster is the violinist Joshua Bell, according to the newspaper O Globo (not yet online). Here’s the squib:

Ancelmo Gois 24/06:
Baixa de peso
Joshua Bell, um dos maiores violinistas do mundo, que assumiu a direção da orquestra de câmara de St.Martin-in-the-Fields, cancelou sua participação na temporada da OSB, no dia 27 de agosto no Municipal do Rio.

Bell joins Nelson Freire, Cristina Ortiz and a small host of others who have informed the OSB and its conductor Roberto Minczuk that they will not play again with them until the musicians are treated properly and the dispute is resolved.

Bell was announced last month as the new music director of Sir Neville Marriner’s Academy of St Martin in the Fields.


  • Luciana says:

    Proud of you, Joshua!

  • Rob Weir says:

    I applaud this action by Mr. Bell. Given that he is about to take the reigns of the Academy it would certainly send a very dubious message to his new “team mates” were he to collaborate with a less than clean FOSB. Every soloist currently slated to perform with OSB should be doing likewise, at least until the FOSB changes it’s stripes.

  • It is nice to see a young person with conviction and true character. Obviously he understands that music is not bound by boundaries of countries, or laws, and that all musicians are an organism working as one. Hurt even the weakest and the whole body suffers. All the honor needs to be given to this wonderful man, support him and buy his cd’s for he is truly making this world a much better place. Thank you Joshua Bell for having the courage of your conviction.

  • ole bohn says:

    Very good news! When will Mr. Minczuk and his ” soldiers” understand that the battle is lost? The music life in Rio needs to breathe again.

  • Ricardo Prins says:


  • Ademir dos Anjos says:

    Sweet! Joshua Bell is a fine real man! Atitudes like that makes a real artist and he will reap rewards by the muses that sing trough the strings of his violin.