Shock, horror: Conductor is found strangled

Shock, horror: Conductor is found strangled


norman lebrecht

November 20, 2014

The Mexican conductor Luis Fernando Luna Guarneros, missing since Sunday, has been found murdered.

The death is being treated as a crime of passion, although there are other lines of inquiry. Strange messages were sent from his cellphone for two days after his disappearance.

Luis was associate director of the Orquesta Sinfónica de Yucatán, in a land of great lawlessness.





  • Mattheos says:

    Strange, as Yucatan is the safest of all Mexican states. Calling the whole nation lawless is a bit exaggerated.

  • V.Lind says:

    I would agree, never having had a whisper of trouble on several trips to the area, and being well off the beaten track and using local transport while there, not cocooned in a resort. But a Canadian couple was murdered in their bedroom in a resort in Cancun a year or so ago, and it was not the only recent instance of such a thing, as reported on our news. I would have thought that was one of the safest destinations on earth up till then. I suppose nowhere is immune any more.

  • Professor Crofton says:

    I knew Luis Luna. He was an extremely kind man and a first-rate musician. I think he deserves something better than this ‘Shock,Horror’ tabloid headline……Shame on you.
    And,by the way,Merida is one of the safest places in Mexico.

  • Irene Quirmbach says:

    Mexico is a very dangerous place! I have traveled there each year for the past 25 years and it is becoming increasingly dangerous as time goes on. Tourists are usually left alone but the crime rate due to drugs, extreme poverty , etc is causing lots of problems for the country. Not to mention that most law enforcement personnel are corrupt…….

  • Barbara says:

    I agree with the previous remark. Shock, horror as a headline is usually a cynical take on a very trivial story which has been exaggerated. Very tasteless concerning the murder of an unfortunate person.

  • 1musicnut says:

    Shame on your ignorance. Merida has been named the safest city in the world. It’s violent crime rate is about the same as the safest US states, such as Vermont. Know something about your subject before speaking, please.

  • John Borstlap says:

    The country seems to have special ways of treating conductors. I know of a conductor who, upon being fetched from the airport by a couple of members of the orchestra he was supposed to conduct, was not brought to his hotel as had been agreed upon, but was held hostage, bound on a chair in a derilict place in a subburb, until the orchetral players got a pay rise.

  • Not relevant says:

    Mr. Borstlap: Do you actually find this funny? Your opening sentence about Mexico’s supposedly “special ways of treating conductors” is apart from stupid, beyond insulting, cynical and prejudiced. Do you think your nonsensical, ridiculous story of “I know of a conductor…” is the proper comment to make? If you are truly convinced of what you are saying, can you tells us the names of conductor and orchestra of your little story?

    This note is about the murder of a conductor, a man who was your colleague if you call yourself a musician. Your shameful behaviour and lack of respect shows an appallingly poor moral education.

  • Richard Dubugnon says:

    Mr Borstlap is right, I heard this conductor story & Mme Quirmbach is right too, Mexico isn’t safe any more, they murder students, ransom tourists… We should send them viola players 😉

  • Shock Horror says:

    I know quite a few professional musicians here in Mexico, and I have never heard of a conductor being held to ransom for a wage increase. If this story is true, it would be a good idea to report it to the appropriate authorities. Last Saturday was St. Cecilia, the day of the musician. Luis Luna was laid to rest in Merida, the city he loved. In Mexico City the Philharmonic dedicated their concert to his memory. They played Strauss’s Metamorphosis. I was there, it was very moving. They wore white ribbons in solidarity with the 43 missing students and their families. These are dark times for Mexico. People have united on the streets, at work and at school trying to find a way forward through this. It is not helpful to read Mr. Borstlap smugly gossiping about incidents which nobody here has heard about. And frankly I am sickened by Mr. Dubugnon’s lack of empathy and humanity. Let me tell you about Omar Hernandez, considered by Irvine Arditti as one of the best viola players internationally. He was murdered a few years ago in Tijuana. Mr. Dubugnon- think before you make glib and tasteless jokes referring to a tragic piece of news. Tijuana is a safer place now. Hopefully, if we all stand together, the rest of Mexico will be safer too.