Principal move: Rotters grab another Paris star

Principal move: Rotters grab another Paris star


norman lebrecht

October 29, 2015

Last week, we reported that Adriana Ferreira, of the Orchestra National de France, was the new principal flute in the Rotterdam Philharmonic.

Now the Rotters have snatched the excellent Bruno Bonansea from the same orchestra to be their new clarinet.

This is getting to be a bit like football transfers.

bruno bonansea


  • Max Grimm says:

    Bruno Bonansea’s move is not exactly unexpected. He is in a relationship with Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra flautist Julie Moulin and has been trying to find a position closer to her. He had auditioned for the principal clarinet position in the RCO two years ago but wasn’t selected; countryman Olivier Patey was (who incidentally before joinging the RCO, was also principal clarinet of the Rotterdam Phil).

    • John Borstlap says:

      The Rotterdam orchestra seems to be a prep school for their Amsterdam peers.

      I remember the Rotterdam horn section drinking beer and reading comics during rehearsels…. I hope some Spanish influx will contribute some more lively work ethics.

  • Sarah says:

    So untrue John Borstlap… the Rotterdam Philharmonic is a great orchestra in it’s own right with a different sound and style to the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. It’s no “prep school”. Also doubtful that with chief conductors like Gergiev and Nezet-Seguin that there is no work ethic. Just sayin…

    • John Borstlap says:

      I was merely being ironic.

      • Martin van de Merwe says:


        Unfortunately I missed this item, when it was posted
        some 4 months ago; yesterday one of my colleagues showed it to me, and I think it is necessary for me to react.
        My name is Martin van de Merwe, I’m in my 42nd season
        as member of the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, and
        my 33rd season as principal horn with this great orchestra and hornsection.
        The incident you are referring to, has taken place some 30 years ago,
        when one of the groupmembers, after a long, great career as principal horn, got into a severe mental crisis, and for that reason unfortunately
        got a drinking problem.
        Just a few months after the incident you talk about, he could leave our orchestra with a good agreement.
        The reason that I tell this is, is that it took place in a time that some of our groupmembers were to young to even realize they would become hornplayers !!
        I can assure you our hornsection is respected by many people, including great conductors, for our high playing-standard, and not for drinking beer and reading comics during rehearsels !
        Maybe you find your text ironic or cynical, and meant funny;
        I can only call it an insult, which we don’t deserve.
        An apology would be appropriate !!

  • MacroV says:

    And still this nonsense about “grabs,” as though Mr. Lebrecht has no idea about how orchestral auditions work.

    • John Borstlap says:

      Journalism begins withy flag waving and hopes to end with serious considerations. Part of contemporary media culture.