Better ratings news: Berlin is wiped off the map

Better ratings news: Berlin is wiped off the map


norman lebrecht

January 03, 2012

Depressed by the Vienna mass audience?

The good news is that, for the second year running, the Berlin Philharmonic extravaganza on German ARD television has been overwhelmed in the ratings by the Dresden Staatskapelle on ZDF – and this despite a Netrebko no-show in the Meissen china showcase. Details on intermezzo.

It’s a big win for Christian Thielemann and an embarrassment for Simon Rattle, whose German media appeal is not what it was.

Thiely has also taken over Rattle’s slot at Salzburg Easter Festival. Are we reading runes here? You bet we are.

Oh, and here’s Trebs in last year’s yes-show.


  • Tommy says:

    Why is that good news? I don’t understand.

    • Because Berlin played dirty games with both TV channels and Salzburg. Search Slipped Disc for background.

      • Medi says:

        Oh YES, very good news. Rattle never was nor will be a “Maestro”. But Thielemann IS. HIs “Götterdämmerung” at Wiener Staatsoper in November was divine! Music friends in Germany and Austria can`t await until HE is in Salzburg, and Dresden.

  • Mati Braun says:

    Too bad for Simon, I still don’t trust Thieleman and don’t beleive that he is an innocent and a clean lamb.

  • john humphreys says:

    well – not only the Greeks who’ve got problems: ‘The Runes of Athens’ perhaps appropriate….

  • George SW says:

    ‘1.22 million (5.8% of the total) went for Dresden on ZDF and just 980,000 for Berlin on ARD. Impressive though they are, these figures represent a small drop from last year’s 1.67 million and 1.19 million.’

    ‘Just’ 980000? Given both lost a significant number of viewers and the margin has nearly halved this year, sneering at Si seems somewhat unfair…

    • Emil Archambault says:

      Remember that Dresden lost Netrebko this year; the BPO still had Evgeny Kissin (by far a bigger name than Beczala) to draw crowds.

  • Steve T says:

    Do we really need conductors like Thielemann ?
    Maybe he is fine with opera and this new years tralala, but reading his CV i really don’t see what he learned as an assistent of …
    and i don’t like to watch him, because his moves in conducting an orchestra are not synchroniced to the
    music at all, whether rythmically nor musically.
    Ok you may say, there are a lot of great conductors without moving alot on stage and the music sounds wonderful..
    i think this guy can not transform music from his mind- body to the orchestra and at the very end to us.
    Its a pitty !

  • Harold Braun says:

    I think Thieleman won the ratings only because he played cheaper and more banal music than Rattle.