Just in: EU youth orchestra quits Britain

Just in: EU youth orchestra quits Britain


norman lebrecht

October 11, 2017

The EUYO, founded in London in 1976, is moving its operational centres to Italy and Belgium.

press release:

The Orchestra has accepted an offer from Dario Franceschini, Italian Minister of Culture, and the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism, to establish a legal and operational seat in Ferrara and Rome, and a new broadcast partnership with RAI, alongside its current Italian work in Bolzano. The Orchestra is also announcing a new partnership in Brussels. These arrangements represent the Orchestra’s first change of headquarters since it was established in London in 1976.

… From 2018, Italy, the home of the EUYO’s Founding Music Director Claudio Abbado, is to become the
Orchestra’s legal and operational seat…

… From 2018, the EUYO will be establishing an office in Brussels following an invitation from the Brussels Philharmonic. The EUYO will assist a consortium of Flemish orchestras, concert halls and conservatoires in initiating the Youth Orchestra of the Flemish Community.

The Italian announcement follows Grafenegg and the EUYO’s recent announcement that from 2018 the EUYO is expanding its relationship and work with Campus Grafenegg, the Grafenegg Festival and the Government of Lower Austria, where the Orchestra has been in partnership with Grafenegg in the European Music Campus since 2014. The Orchestra becomes Resident Orchestra at Grafenegg and Partner in Campus Grafenegg, whilst Grafenegg becomes the EUYO’s summer home and principal summer venue partner.


  • Pacer1 says:

    Note found in the vacant EUYO London office: “So long, and thanks for all the fish.”

  • Robert Roy says:

    Does this mean that young U.K. Players will no longer be eligible to play in the orchestra? Very sad fr all concerned if they’re not.

    • Wakefield says:

      From the EUYO website: “UK players ARE STILL eligible to apply in the autumn of 2017 for the EUYO 2018 Orchestra. The arrangement for future years will depend on the details of the agreement negotiated between the EU and the UK.”


      “We can only accept applicants from the 28 EU Member States.”

      Taking these statements together, it appears highly likely that once the UK leave the EU, young British musicians will not be able to join the orchestra – like those from non-EU countries at present, e.g. Norway or Iceland.

    • buxtehude says:

      Another triumph for the taking-our-country-back crowd.

  • Will says:

    Tragic. I wonder what will happen to the London-based staff?
    I’m sure they will do brilliantly in Italy and wish them every success but it is a very sad loss for London.

  • Alex Davies says:

    Dear old Ted Heath must be turning in his grave.

  • Eleanor says:

    One more blow to British culture. Don’t forget to thank Nigel Farrage, Boris Johnson and your Prime Minister.

    • M von Kolinahr says:

      … Another sad repercussion following on from the “monstrous breach of faith” and “wrecking ball” (Norman on the referendum result last year). OK, it may still be comparatively small in the overall scheme of things, but really… what a shame.

    • Furzwängler says:

      Oh do grow up. And when you have, look up some facts to see what persuaded a majority of the electorate in the UK to vote to leave the EU.

      • Robin O'Neill says:

        Like the extra £350,000,000 a week for the NHS? No one’s provided me with a convincing argument yet….

    • Ellingtonia says:

      In your thanks, you forgot to include myself and 17 million other UK residents who voted out of the cesspit of corruption that is the EU. Go back to your group of “luvvies” and form a mutual support group……….perhaps also a short course of psychotherapy!

  • dougal says:

    No worries we will have a Hard Border Chamber Orchestra in Crossmaglen, great for smuggling stuff at both ends to be sure, Brexit has its advantages.

  • Analeck Kram-Hammerbauer says:

    Good news.

  • David Nice says:

    I don’t suppose most people knew the EUYO and EUBO were based in the UK. They give too few concerts here – and don’t even appear at the Proms every year. So it’s a good, publicised slap in the face to our so-called government and the deluded who voted for Brexit with gains all round.

    • Ellingtonia says:

      I have consulted my fellow “outers” and we are all devastated by the fact that will no longer get to see the EUYO and EUBO (not that we ever saw much of them in the past), I guess we will just have to put up with the multitude of other orchestras based in the UK and the international ones that tour here. Still, we have the NYOGB which could play the pants off the European Orchestra any day of the week, and we do get to see them throughout the UK. I think that in future when a democratic decision is made, those on the losing side should go back and look up the words / phrases “democracy and will of the people” otherwise they will continue with this “we know what is best for you” patronising and insulting stance.