Tadaaki Otaka will be the new chief conductor of the Osaka Philharmonic Orchestra.

He succeeds Michiyoshi Inoue in April next year.

Osaka with Otaka will be particularly hard on classical announcers.


History lesson: The first concert of the Osaka Philharmonic – known then as the Kansai Symphony Orchestra – was on April 26, 1947. Otaka was born on November 8 1947. He will become its third music director (Michiyoshi Inoue was not music director but principal conductor).


LSO statement:

Valery Gergiev is recovering after a knee operation, and is unable to travel to London to conduct the LSO’s concerts on Tuesday 29 and Wednesday 30 November.

The LSO is very grateful to conductor Thomas Søndergård for agreeing to step in to conduct these concerts at short notice.

gergiev injury

Søndergård is Principal Conductor of BBC National Orchestra of Wales and Principal Guest Conductor of Royal Scottish National Orchestra.

Like this:

Cincinnati Symphony principal bass Owen Lee plays a 1590 Gasparo Da Salo restored by Cincinnati Bass Cellar and now on sale.


We have received an up-to the-minute list of female musicians who are permanent members of the Vienna State Opera orchestra, en route to becoming full members of the Vienna Philharmonic.

There are now 15, going on 16:

Albena Danailova – concertmaster
Isabelle Ballot, Olesya Kurylyak, Alina Pinchas, Ekaterina Frolova, Petra Kovacic – 1st violins
Patricia Koll, Adela Frasineanu – 2nd violins
Ursula Ruppe, Daniela Ivanova – viola
Ursula Wex – violoncello
Charlotte Balzereit-Zell, Anneleen Lenaerts – harp
Karin Bonelli – flute
Sophie Dartigalongue – bassoon

sophie dartin

And from 1 Sep 2017: Silvia Careddu (flute).

The old barrier is well and truly broken.

1 Il Volo

2 Joyce DiDonato


3 Mormon Tabernacle Choir – Hallelujah

4 J J Wright

5 Mormon Tabernacle Choir – Messiah

No other record topped 200 sales last week, according to Nielsen Soundscan.


The Academy of Ancient Music is losing its manager after less than three years.

Ed Hossack, highly respected in the early music field, cites the long commute from his home in London to the AAM’s Cambridge offices as his reason for leaving. In the two years since Christopher Hogwood’s death, Hossack has greatly expanded the ensemble’s overseas brand.

But though Hogwood (pictured) left the AAM a bequest of just over £1 million in his will, we hear the latest accounts (which we haven’t yet seen) show a £190,000 deficit for the last financial year. Some tightening up may be required.


David Steinbuhler builds smaller keyboards for pianists with a shorter finger span.


‘The magic for creating these smaller keyboards takes place in David Steinbuhler’s Titusville, Pennsylvania ribbon factory, a family-run business that has been around since 1897,’ writes Hugh Sung, who has interviewed David on his fascinating weekly podcast here. 



The free strawberry is first night only.


photo (c) Elisabeth Naughton

Russian media report the death, aged 90, of Mark Taimanov, one of the foremost chess competitors of the Soviet era and a widely respected pianist whose personal friends included Shostakovich and Richter.

Taimanov may be best remembered for losing 6-0 to Bobby Fischer in 1971, a drubbing that he immortalised in a best-selling book. He had previously beaten six world champions, including Botvinnik, Spassky and Karpov.


Taimanov formed a piano duo with his first wife, Lyubov Bruk, touring and recorded widely. The pair were included in the Philips series Great Pianists of the 20th Century.

As a boy, Taimanov played a violinist in the Soviet film, Beethoven Concerto.


The outstanding Lieder singer Christian Gerhaher has attacked the Grand Théâtre de Genève on his website for misleading their public about his availability and cancelling his engagement.

Gerhaher says he and his accompanist Gerold Huber signed a contract for January 29, 2017. The theatre posted two dates, 27 and 29. When the artists pointed out they could not manage the first date, the theatre cancelled both.

‘Christian Gerhaher and Gerold Huber would very much like to appear in Geneva on 29 January 2017 as agreed,’ they insist, apologising to the ticketholders who have been midled. Here’s the text:


(photo: Sony Classical)

Christian Gerhaher und Gerold Huber bitten alle Konzertbesucher ihres geplanten Liederabends am Grand Théâtre de Genève im Januar 2017 um Verständnis für den sehr bedauerlichen Ausfall des Abends.

Anders als in der Pressemitteilung des Grand Théâtre de Genève dargestellt, wurde das Theater bereits vor mehr als zwei Monaten auf einen Fehler in der Terminierung hingewiesen. Bei der Planung des Konzerts war seit jeher ein Liederabend für den

29. Januar 2017 besprochen worden. Um Genf diesen Termin anbieten zu können, wurde sogar der schon feststehende Tourneeplan geändert. Bis zum Zeitpunkt der Ausfertigung der Verträge war ausschließlich von einem Liederabend am 29.01.2017 die Rede. Zu unserem Bedauern haben wir nach der ausführlichen Korrespondenz mit dem korrekten Datum tatsächlich übersehen, dass die Verträge vom Grand Théâtre mit Datum 27.01.2017 falsch ausgestellt worden waren und haben sie irrtümlich zurückgeschickt. In den ersten Reaktionen im September schien das Theater seinen Irrtum noch durchaus zu sehen und eine Terminberichtigung zurück auf den 29.01.2017 noch ohne größere Probleme möglich. Sie wurde aber sehr zu unserem Bedauern im November von der Theaterleitung abgelehnt.

Christian Gerhaher und Gerold Huber wären gerne am 29. Januar 2017 wie vereinbart in Genf aufgetreten.

The popular mezzo-soprano, soon to sing at ENO though she has never held the stage in a full opera, defines what it is she does in a Scottish interview today:


katherine_jenkins car2

‘To me it means somebody who’s had training in the classical world so can operate in that space, but who also has an interest in making the genre more popular and accessible. I think it’s a mixture of commercial opportunities with classical training, and being able to do concerts of both style…

‘‘Crossover’ gives the idea of spanning two genres and I think that’s what it is. It’s spanning classical and pop…

‘I think it’s about taking out the bits that make people feel uneasy or excluded, and making it feel very accessible. Letting people go to concerts or access opera performances, for example, where ticket prices are hugely expensive, and doing them sometimes in pop venues.’

So now we know.

More here.