Orchestra censors site after cellist is arrested in murder inquiry

Orchestra censors site after cellist is arrested in murder inquiry


norman lebrecht

November 07, 2014

The Beethoven Orchestra in Bonn has removed from its site the name and picture of its second principal cello, who has been arrested for questioning about the murder of his wife, the pianist Kate de Marcken.

The cellist, a Russian, may under German sub judice law be referred to only as Sergey K. He is 54 and his picture has been published in local media.

sergey k



The orchestra has also removed from its website the dates that Kate was expected to perform in the coming season. Her murder has left the musical community of Bonn in a state of shock. Kate was an outgoing person with an extended group of friends and family in Belgium and the US. They are trying to discover more about the circumstances of her death and have requested that comments on this site be confined to personal memories of her. Kate leaves a 12 year-old son.


  • JAMA11 says:

    I think it’s adorable that you are both publishing his picture and maintaining the quaint fiction of not naming him because it’s not allowed under “sub judice” law in Germany, where you neither live nor publish this blog.

  • Maria Geissler says:

    Dear Mr. Lebrecht,

    I’m writing you as one of the orchestra members of the Beethoven Orchester. It has a reason why the photo of the cellist was removed: mainly to protect his family, especially his son, and other people, who knew him or his wife well. We are all in shock here and I would be very grateful if you could remove this picture.

    Thank you very much.
    Maria Geissler

    • norman lebrecht says:

      Dear Ms Geissler

      The photograph was released by the police for publication in media, in connection with their investigation of the murder and with the aim of gathering evidence. We appreciate the sensitivities of his friends and fellow-musicians and will not republish the picture in any further posts, but we would not wish either to hinder the investigation by removing the picture from a previous post.
      best wishes
      Norman Lebrecht