Much-loved Berlin Philharmonic principal has died

Much-loved Berlin Philharmonic principal has died


norman lebrecht

February 21, 2015

We have received sad news of the death of Hanns-Joachim (Hajo) Westphal, principal second violin of the Berlin Philharmonic through the Karajan years. He was 85.

Hajo features on numerous chamber music recordings with friends in the orchestra. On retiring from Berlin, he gave valuable help to Claudio Abbado in forming the Lucerne Festival Orchestra, where he played for nine summers.

‘Our whole LFO second violin section really loved him,’ writes Etienne Abelin. ‘We had the tradition of going for burger, fries and a Guiness in a local pub wherever we were, be it in Lucerne or on tour, which was always great fun. He was a passionate musician, extraordinary leader and man with never ending curiosity and wit.’

hajo westphal