Simon Rattle tells Spanish audience that Brexit is a disaster

Simon Rattle tells Spanish audience that Brexit is a disaster


norman lebrecht

July 09, 2016

In an interview with El Pais (and not as previously reported), the conductor said his country had ‘shot itself in the foot’.

Plus some other comments here.




  • Olassus says:

    Of course, the same Simon Rattle a few years ago loudly lamented how England had been “lost,” or some such, to the effects of too much immigration.

    Now he’s just worried about money.

    • 5566hh says:

      Really? When was that? Can you provide evidence? Doesn’t sound like him at all.

      • Olassus says:

        Norman will know. 3 or 4 years ago, I think, and the remarks were public. Would be good to reference them here.

        • Sue says:


          • Iain Scott says:

            I did indeed “google” Rattle’s supposed comments on immigration.No nothing to support the claims by Olassus . I then tried yahoo but still nothing. If you are going to make claims then please substantiate them.

          • Olassus says:

            I couldn’t find anything either when I tried this morning. Hopefully Norman will know. The comments were before there was any talk of his going to the LSO, so at least 3 years ago, possibly 6 years. And he may not have used the word “immigration.” What he said was something to the effect of England or Britain as we have known it being lost or gone for good. I wish I could be more specific because his thought made quite a sad impression.

          • MWnyc says:

            “What he said was something to the effect of England or Britain as we have known it being lost or gone for good.”

            It’s not at all clear that a comment like that would be about immigration; it could be about anything at all. Knowing what I know of Simon Rattle, it could very likely be about austerity in general and arts funding cuts in particular.

  • Dave says:

    Rattle will gladly come home if you give him his concert hall.

  • Standingstones says:

    You have to give Sir Simon one thing. He has big cojones. Just design him a concert hall to his specifications and he will consider returning home to conduct full time.

  • Greg from SF says:

    Rattle. A damp squib.

  • Richard Wiegold says:

    Dear Mr from SF,

    I know Sir Simon personally, and have sung under him in Berlin and Salzburg. I can think of very few human beings less deserving of the appellation ‘damp squib’ than him.

  • Douglas Quigg says:

    And Sir SIMON is right. The UK’s littlle people have confirmed its dying empire status. It’s a shambles. It’s an international embarassnent. Just look at the economy, the politics and hatred that emerged.

    The country has thrown so much away.

    • Alec says:

      Make sure you don’t get so angry that you don’t manage to spell “little” correct – you little man 😀

      • Douglas says:

        You have made a spelling error but I do not right abusive comments on the Internet. It would appear that you do. I doubt you would have the nerve to do so to my face. If you want to give it a try, then identify yourself.

        • Furzwängler says:

          You may not right abusive comments, but you should certainly desist from righting wubbish.

          Sounds like the anger of a failed Remaniac to me.

    • Maria Brewin says:

      “dying empire status”

      What has “empire” got to do with it?

      Why not throw in a few silly comments about umbrellas, bowler hats, tea and warm beer while you’re at it?

      And the hatred, which hasn’t involved any rapes or decapitations as far as I’m aware, cuts both ways.

    • Anon says:

      Nonsense. The economy is in no real different state to that pre-referendum. A mildly weaker pound (still higher than previous lows) is a help to exports and a help to the economy in general; the FTSE 100 and now the FTSE250 are back at pre-referendum levels; major company after major company have re-affirmed their commitment to the UK, in stark contrast to their pre-vote pronouncements (most recently Siemens); and the UK Government now has access to the lowest borrowing costs (i.e. UK gvmt gilt yield from the markets) in living memory – a confident sign that the markets believe the UK economy is stronger outside the EU than within.

      As for ‘hatred’, the only hatred I see is that referred to by Remainers seeking a reason they can lean on for their loss. And by personal observation, it simply isn’t true. There are plenty who believe in a more, not less, open UK; a UK that is open to the whole world, not to Europe plus-a-bit-of-the-others. The world’s fifth largest economy is quite capable, I am sure, of managing itself without needing to be a member of the declining, protectionist bloc that is the EU; and quite capable, too, of being open and generous to and with the world. There’s no reason to think the UK is about to retreat.

  • David Boxwelll says:

    Brexit affects his him and his family in a very personal way, like hundreds of thousands of UK-EU couplings (and their kids). He probably now regrets leaving Berlin.

    • Anon says:

      David, in what way? Until we know more about what Brexit may consist of, this is an erroneous statement. It may well not affect him in the slightest, and is highly unlikely to affect him in terms of his family life.

  • John G. Deacon says:

    Incredibly bad manners – but who is Simon Rattle ??

    • Iain Scott says:

      I think you may be on the wrong site here. If you have a problem with a herniated disc-a a la Robin Ticciati or any other health problem the site for you is
      For alzheimers or other memory related problems then other assistance is available.

  • Jimbo says:

    So Simon how well is the EU and the Euro working out for Spain? 45% youth unemployment, a great success!

  • Douglas says:

    Well I confess to have indulged in expressing my view that Brexit is mad. As you might see, I have been criticised. We are in a very divided nation now and I agree with Sir Simon. The UK is suffering in so many ways from this apparent divorce from the EU. Personally,!im ashamed of the country right now and my colleagues from overseas can’t understand why we have taken this course.

    Sir Simon has been a huge benefit to British and worldwide classical music. He is without doubt one of the world’s greatest musical leaders and he is right to express his view.

    I had expected abusive emails on Teitter but certainly not on Slipped Disc. For goodness sake everyone lets stop being horrid to each other and showing some respect.

  • Pablo L. Rodriguez (@pablolrguez) says:

    Dear Mr. Lebrecht:

    I’m afraid that the information is not correct. Sir Simon Rattle told me all of this during an exclusive interview with him that I published in El País and he doesn’t told anything to the audience during the performance in the Festival of Granada. It is clear that the editor of The Olive News did not understand Spanish. Please read (I know that you can read Spanish perfectly):

    Thanks for your blog and best regards,


  • Don Ciccio says:

    Of course it is a disaster – after all England has been brexiting – or brexited – at early staging of every European soccer tournament in recent years! 🙂

  • Don Ciccio says:

    Of course it is a disaster – after all England has been brexiting – or brexited – at early stages of every European soccer tournament in recent years! 🙂

  • Pablo L. Rodriguez says:

    Thanks, Norman. Best wishes, Pablo.