Bernard Haitink is lionised

Bernard Haitink is lionised


norman lebrecht

February 17, 2017

The veteran Dutch conductor, 87, has been appointed Commander of the Order of the Dutch Lion, the country’s oldest and most exclusive public honour.

The honour was conferred to mark the 60th anniversary of his debut with the Concertgebouw orchestra, which he conducted again last night.


  • Herr Doktor says:

    Well deserved!

  • Dan P. says:

    Back in 1971, as a kid I left home (without telling anyone except a friend) and flew to New York to hear Haitink conduct the Mahler Ninth Symphony with the Concertgebouw Orchestra at Carnegie Hall. That performance still resonates in my memory as one of the greatest experiences of my life. 45 years later almost to the day he came back to New York to conduct it – this time with the NY Philharmonic at what is now David Geffen Hall. Though neither the NY Phil or Geffen are anywhere in the same class as the Concertgebouw and Carnegie, it was still great to see him perform Mahler again.

  • Ungeheuer says:

    About time. What took so long?

  • Pedro says:

    Congratulations to the best conductor in the world!

  • Edgar Brenninkmeyer says:

    This honor comes very late. But then, better late than never. I suspect Bernard Haitink is not the kind of person addicted to honors. In awarding the Commandership of the Dutch Lion the country’s government, at last, acknowledged it’s own unforgivable indifference in recognizing the immense contribution Bernard Haitink has made, and continues to make, to Dutch and global cultural life. Haitink will go on, as long as health and life allow him, to gift the world with superb music performances. One more medal and sash, or one less, for that matter, or even this late Dutch “lionization”, will be insignificant.

  • Pedro says:

    Haitink has just conducted at the Concertgebouw one of the very best Bruckner Seventh in my life. I am spoiled because I have heard Karajan, Jochum, Celibidache and Giulini in this work. Haitink was at the same level. Bravo to him. The first half was also superb: Debussy’s Prélude and Nocturnes. Unforgettable.

  • John de Jong says:

    Commander of the Order of the Dutch Lion is very rarely awarded.
    Haitink has received several royal appointments:
    1969: Officier in de Orde van Oranje-Nassau
    2000: Eremedaille voor Kunst en Wetenschap van de Huisorde van Oranje
    2017: Commandeur in de Orde van de Nederlandse Leeuw