Exclusive: Toronto Symphony starts to learn from its past

Exclusive: Toronto Symphony starts to learn from its past


norman lebrecht

December 29, 2016

In the week of the biggest boardroom clear-out anyone has seen in Toronto, interim president Gary Hanson took time out to consult with Walter Homburger, managing director of the orchestra in its glory years.

Walter was the best classical impresario Canada has ever seen. He discovered and managed Glenn Gould, launched an international artists touring series and ran the Toronto Symphony with grace and good judgement from 1962 and 1987. In retirement, he discovered and launched the violinist James Ehnes.

Now 92, Walter keeps a keen eye on musical affairs. His is exactly the kind of voice that needs to be heard as Toronto emerges from prolonged mire.


  • David J. Hyslop says:

    The picture of Walter Homburger and Gary Hanson together brings back great memories.

    Walter did a tremendous job as CEO of the Toronto Symphony for many years and Gary

    Hanson was excellent in the same role with the Cleveland Orchestra.

    Gary will do a fine job as interim CEO of the Toronto Symphony .

  • Elaine Calder says:

    At last! It’s good to see this photograph.

  • erich says:

    Wasn’t Homburger also responsible for discovering the great Klaus Tennstedt?

    • norman lebrecht says:

      yes, in Kiel.

      • V.Lind says:

        That alone should net him a special place in heaven.

        And to pay tribute where due, I discovered Tennstedt through the writings of Norman Lebrecht — so long ago I forget which book or books (I read all I could find), but possibly The Maestro Myth. Immediately started investigating his recordings from the library, and became devoted enough to choose his when they were available to me — I am particularly partial to a double disc of Wagner overtures.

        So thanks, NL.

  • Nigel says:

    Finally some adults. Nice people too!