A fourth music director walks out

A fourth music director walks out


norman lebrecht

September 24, 2014

First Gianandrea Noseda blows out of Turin.

Then Welser-Möst quits Vienna.

Next Han-na Chang dumps Qatar the morning after their Proms debut.

Now Naples has been left headless. Nicola Luisotti has announced he will leave the San Carlo after the opening night, December 12. He has been music director there for just three years. He holds the same post at San Francisco Opera.



It’s starting to look like a lemming phenomenon.


UPDATE: Have maestros gone… a little … mad?


  • Nicholas Clapton says:

    Perhaps music directors are at last beginning to be completely fed-up with not being taken seriously – I shall never forget Haitink’s face during one of his last Tristans at Covent Garden: it spoke volumes about a vile production over which he had no say whatever! Many singers and a lot of the public (who, remember, do have quite a lot of input into keeping the show on the road) have been equally fed up for years; now, perhaps, some notice will be taken.

    • Ks. Christopher Robson says:

      I have a feeling the problem has other roots, most likely to do with (especially in Italy) lack of rehearsal time, broken promises from management, bad labour relations (certainly in Italy), uncomfortable working conditions, cast changes at short notice, etc, etc. The younger generations of opera conductors are much more in tune with the general trend of modern productions and are tend to have more input than is generally percieved. Maestro Haitink was/is very much of the old school and was more likely to raise his eyebrows at certain productions than many of those 20/30/40 years younger than himself. So, considering what one has been able to glean from the various reports, I believe the reasons these conductors are leaving their posts are not really to do with the artistic side of particular opera stagings, and much more to do with personal and professional problems with their managements/companies/orchestras. Frankly, it is no surprise that conductors don’t last very long in their jobs in Italy when the atmosphere there is so volatile and insecure financially and in terms of labour relations. Contracts and agreements there are rarely worth the paper they are written on.

  • sdReader says:

    Norman, you forgot Muti!