Just in: Charles Dutoit and Montreal kiss and make up

Just in: Charles Dutoit and Montreal kiss and make up


norman lebrecht

February 23, 2015

Further to the interview we published last week…

(press release)


Montreal, Monday, February 23, 2015 The Orchestre symphonique de Montréal is happy to participate in a special event reuniting the OSM and Maestro Charles Dutoit, produced and presented by Spectra Musique for the MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE in 2016. This announcement was made during a press conference held at noon today in the presence of Lucien Bouchard, President of the Board of Directors of the OSM, Alain Simard, President and Managing Director of Équipe Spectra, and Maestro Charles Dutoit. The event is a reunion between Charles Dutoit and the OSM, the maestro having held the position of Artistic Director of the Orchestra from 1977 to 2002, conducting for the last time in March 2002. The 24 years under the direction of Charles Dutoit constituted a chapter which saw the OSM rise to international recognition thanks to the completion of more than 30 tours and some 80 recordings…

‘We are delighted that Alain Simard was able to seize the opportunity to invite Charles Dutoit as a part of the MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE. That fruitful period when Charles Dutoit was at the helm of the OSM, as we all know, ended unhappily in 2002. There had to be a peaceful way forward. Charles Dutoit has contributed so much to our Orchestra. Since then the OSM has continued to develop, entering the 21st century in full command of its craft. Charles Dutoit’s efforts to secure a hall for the OSM which would befit the Orchestra’s reputation were taken up by Kent Nagano, resulting with the inauguration of the new concert hall in 2011. …With great enthusiasm, we all worked together to make the project of Charles Dutoit’s return to Montreal a reality. We hope that the Montreal public will be as happy as we are to reunite with him,’ stated Mr. Lucien Bouchard, President of the Board of Directors of the OSM.

‘It is surely a great moment in the history of the OSM to witness the return of Charles Dutoit as part of the MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE. Charles Dutoit and I have known each other for many years, and it was he who invited me to conduct the Orchestra for the first time; he is a great artist for whom I have a deep respect, and who has led an impressive career. He accomplished so much with the OSM…’ added Kent Nagano, Musical Director of the OSM.



  • SDReader says:

    A circus event? Mon Dieu, if Nagano had any balls he would insist on slotting Dutoit into the regular season.

    • montreal music says:

      it is my understanding that nagano actually invited dutoit more than once since coming to montreal. looks like they needed a matchmaker (spectra) after all.

  • MacroV says:

    News articles in the past said Nagano had repeatedly invited Dutoit back, with no success. I suspect his not coming back on the regular OSM program has something to do with the person conspicuously missing from the announcement: Managing Director Madeleine Carreau, who didn’t appear to do much to keep him from leaving back in 2002.

    Hopefully if this reunion goes well, he’ll come back into the fold and assume the honored “elder statesman” role he richly deserves.

  • Don Ciccio says:

    Wonderful news. Now, when can we get Dutoit back in Philly?

    • Papageno says:

      I was saddened to see that Charles Dutoit isn’t coming back to the LA Philharmonic next season either, after a run of a dozen years as a guest conductor. They seem more interested in spending their money on Bill Viola and Roberto Bolle instead. Hope that he isn’t gone for good (Zubin, Dohnanyi, and other big podium names don’t seem to come anymore either).

      On a related note, Dutoit was just on tour with the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, and the musicians sounded wonderful. Probably the most sublime Daphnis and Chloe Second Suite I’ve ever heard played live.

      • David says:

        And if Mr. Lebrecht didn’t harbor such ill feelings against the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, perhaps he could’ve written about that tour instead of all that other insignificant news?

  • Roscoe says:

    Keep him in Philly and don’t let him escape.