Orchestra chief resigns over swelling deficit

One of the sorriest sagas in Dutch music ended today with the resignation of Harm Mannak as chief executive of HET symfonieorkest, orchestra of the East Netherlands.

Mannak, who made himself unpopular by taking another orchestra to court in a name dispute, claimed he would put the orchestra on a firm financial footing without structural state subsidy by 2018.

But a report out tomorrow will show (we hear) that HET is spending 5 million Euros a year, against subsidy of 3.5m. So Mannak (l.) has gone and there are fears the orch may not long outlast him.



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  • It is one of the best orchestras in the country, so hopefully a solution will be found. Given the thoroughly populist climate in Holland, where ‘classical music’ is increasingly considered an elitist hobby of the rich, this will not be easy.

      • After WW II, the Netherlands have always looked to the USA for inspiration, NOT to the rest of Europe. That means that the country is not really European, a conclusion that any non-Dutch person living for some time in the country, would confirm.

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