Just in: Esa-Pekka Salonen is getting divorced

Just in: Esa-Pekka Salonen is getting divorced


norman lebrecht

January 17, 2018

The ever-awake Finnish media have found court documents showing that Jane Price, Esa-Pekka Salonen’s wife, filed for divorce in Los Angeles last June.

The couple, who have been married for 26 years, have three children and live in LA, where Salonen used to be music director of the Philharmonic.

Lately, he has been spending time back in Finland, where he is artistic associate of the national opera and is planning to conduct a Ring cycle next year.

The couple met originally in London when Jane was a violinist in the Philharmonia Orchestra, where Salonen is long-serving music director.

Salonen will turn 60 this year.



  • Will Duffay says:

    Don’t care. Not relevant.

  • Leila says:

    Is it really necessary to share that sort of personal information!!

  • Rodney Friend says:

    ====what is the point of reporting that kind of information?

    There might be implications. With a British soon to be ex-wife, maybe EPS will want to spend less time here with the Philharmonia. Or the divorce might preceed some big life-change, perhaps more time composing and less conducting.

    Anyway, we all need a bit of industry gossip. I for one am glad SD reported it.

    • Mikko says:

      As I understand it, it was the wife and kids who complained when EPS moved them to London in 2009. Eventually the family went back to Los Angeles, and the kids were coming of age and moving out anyway.

  • boringfileclerk says:

    Do we know who the mistress is?

  • Jan Kaznowski says:

    As in the official court movement here, Mrs S is already lawyered-up


    • Dan P. says:

      Well, you would need a lawyer to file for divorce in court. I’m not sure that rates as being “lawyered up.” After all, if you are about to proceed with a legal action, lawyers are the one requirement. This is not an amateur event.

  • Mark Henriksen says:

    Maybe its irreconcilable distances? I’ve only heard about bigtime conductors getting divorced. 27 years is pretty long. Any famous living conductors married to one spouse longer than that?

    • Max Grimm says:

      Vladimir Ashkenazy and his wife Þórunn will be celebrating their 57th anniversary this year.

    • anon says:

      Muti. 49 years.

    • anon says:

      Michael Tilson Thomas, together with his partner Joshua Mark Robison for 42 years, married four years ago in 2014 when it became legal in California.

      • Max Grimm says:

        Seeing you mention MTT, reminded me of his predecessor, Herbert Blomstedt.
        He met his wife Waltraud (“Traute”) in high school and was married to her for 48 years, from 1955 until her passing in February 2003.

    • Alex Davies says:

      Recently deceased, Sir Colin Davis was married to his second wife for approximately 46 years.

      Also only recently deceased, Nikolaus and Alice Harnoncourt were married for about 62-63 years.

      Sir Edward Downes and his wife Joan were married for around 54 years before their joint assisted suicide.

      Sir Neville Marriner’s second marriage lasted about 59 years.

      Sir David Willcocks and Lady Willcocks were married for around 68 years.

      Jiří Bělohlávek and Anna Fejérová were married for some 46 years or so.

      Sir Charles and Judy Mackerras were married for 63 years or thereabouts.

      Not primarily known as a conductor, but Itzhak and Toby Perlman celebrate 52 years of marriage this year.

      Again, not primarily known as a conductor, Plácido and Marta celebrate 56 years too.

    • Elle says:

      George Prêtre† & his wife Gina, m.1950-2017

  • Rodney Friend says:

    ==Any famous living conductors married to one spouse longer than that?

    Zubin married Nancy in 1969 and they’re still together

    • La Verita says:

      Still together? Well, if you want to call it that…

      • Bruce says:

        The question was “are they still married.”

        • La Verita says:

          Zubin attempted to divorce Nancy in 1989. Nancy summoned a Christian Science practitioner to negotiate an agreement with Zubin, and they arrived at an understanding whereby he would remain in the marriage. Read all about it in “The Woman Who Wouldn’t Talk” by Susan Macdougal (who was Nancy’s assistant at that time).

  • Jan Kaznowski says:

    Hmm yes, but Atlanta Jewish Times says that Mehta has an illegitimate child in Israel: born 1991


  • Sharon says:

    More than 27 years? Will you include James Levine and his “friend”/housekeeper Anne Thompson? I believe that they have been living together (in whatever capacity) for more than 40

  • Office says:

    We don’t care what he does as long he keeps conducting and composing and doesn’t mess with inappropriately younger women

  • Office says:

    No we don’t care about his private life as long as he keeps conducting and composing and doesn’t mess with inappropriately younger women

  • herrera says:

    Smart girl, she filed in California, a community property state, she gets 50% of his assets. Including his compositions.

    • Harpsi says:

      If they were married in California (I’m pretty sure that they were), that would be the correct place to file.

  • Harpsi says:


  • John Humphreys says:

    Oh dear – Carillion and now this. Life will never be the same.

  • h. meyer says:

    It is unfortunate when two people who have been together this long, and have children, get a divorce. No one has the right to be judgmental. In fact, this is none of anyone’s business. I hope they both find happiness in their futures.