Conductor says sorry for calling board ‘a bunch of crooks’

Conductor says sorry for calling board ‘a bunch of crooks’


norman lebrecht

June 23, 2014

He’s being sued by the orchestra president for saying, two years ago, that ‘a bunch of crooks dressed in $3,000 suits came in who didn’t know a thing about the music business.’

Peter Nero, 80, music director emeritus of the Philly Pops, now says he didn’t really mean that.

Frank Giordano, the orchestra president, last week launched a $75,000 defamation suit against him. A statement from Nero’s lawyer’s office said:  ‘I recognize that I perhaps should have been more careful. I apologize for that conversation and some of the statements I made. I did not mean to cause harm nor offend.’

Course he didn’t.

peter nero

What’s impressive is a conductor who can tell a $3,000 suit from a $300 one.


  • Robert Fitzpatrick says:

    Peter was right about the price of the suits, and the musical background of the aforementioned suits. He seems willing to retract the third comment so that others can decide. Peter Nero’s popularity in Philadelphia remains intact especially among the musicians who performed with him (of whom I was one starting in 1979 when Philly Pops played its first concert). I suggest that Peter settle the suit by giving $75,000 to Play-on-Philly (a grass roots effort to restore musical study for children abandoned by Philadelphia Public Schools) in the name of Mr. Giordano.

  • Doug says:

    $75,000 lawsuit…that’s about 25 suits. One for each crook on the board.

  • According to research carried-out by the Pine Bluff University, the more expensive the clothes of orchestral boards, the less musical expertise, and vice versa since increased musical understanding goes together with decreasing purchasing power. As Prof. Amadé Wittkower (PhD, OMg, ARF) explained (Journal of Academic Rumblings # 4, 2013): ‘Following this line of thought, as suggested by the results of our five-year research programme, the best orchestral board would be composed of fully-naked members, which we have not as yet been able to discover in the American orchestral field. This may account for the increasing difficulties orchestras find themselves in nowadays.’