Simon Rattle and Christian Thielemann mourn Claudio Abbado

A statement from Sir Simon, issued by the Berlin Philharmonic:

“We have lost a great musician and a very generous man. Ten years ago we all wondered whether he would survive the illness which has now claimed him, but instead, he, and we as musicians and public, could enjoy an extraordinary Indian Summer, in which all the facets of his art came together in an unforgettable way.

He said to me a few years ago, “Simon, my illness was terrible, but the results have not been all bad: I feel that somehow I hear from the inside of my body, as if the loss of my stomach gave me internal ears. I cannot express how wonderful that feels. And I still feel that music saved my life in that time!”

Always a great conductor, his performances in these last years were transcendent, and we all feel privileged to have witnessed them. Personally, he was always immensely kind and generous to me, from my earliest days as a conductor, and we kept warm and funny contact together even up to last Friday. He remains deep in my heart and memory.”


A statement rom the Salzburg Easter Festival:

 Christian Thielemann, the Artistic Director of the Salzburg Easter Festival, says: „I am very sad to receive the news of the passing of Claudio Abbado. I always admired how he managed to combine emotions and intellect in his nnterpretations. Abbado was an extraordinary opera and concert conductor and likewise a very sympathetic and modest colleague. His death means a great loss for the musical world.“

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