Latest: Chicago’s Beethoven Fest loses its backers

Latest: Chicago’s Beethoven Fest loses its backers


norman lebrecht

July 03, 2014

The roof organisation for George Lepauw’s Beethoven Festival, which failed to pay many musicians for last year’s performances, has pulled out any future involvement.

John von Rhein reports in the Chicago Tribune: In a letter sent Wednesday to George Lepauw, president and artistic director of the festival’s parent organization, the International Beethoven Project, foundation executive director Thomas Zoells said he is withdrawing the participation of PianoForte Chicago and the PianoForte Foundation in the 2014 Beethoven Festival, which has been announced for Sept. 5-21.

Chicago Federation of Musicians has threatened a boycott of Lepauw, a young musician who got in way over his head and seems to have no way back.

beethoven fest



  • Veronica says:

    Something to be said here is, that promoters and donors from all walks of life in Chicago believed and promoted this “Ponzi scheme” charlatan WAY to long-many of those backing out now, who are pretending they had nothing to do with the “International Beethoven Project” should be just as ashamed for having been willing enablers and participants in this scam. Chicago’s classical music scene at it’s worst!

  • Nick says:

    I hope no tickets had been sold for this Festival since it seems it is not going to happen. I have read endorsements of Mr. Lepauw here but it strikes me he is just one of quite a few entrepreneurs in the classical music business who have dreams but little idea of “business”. Some take risks on a far higher scale, though.

  • Andrew Patner says:

    Nick: Don’t give anyone else any ideas! 😉 Veronica: Some truth there, for sure. Some things a little more complex. Eventually, silence took the place of enabling for many. And participants came and went. Yes, though. More should have been said earlier by more people. No argument.