Maestro, 90, is endowed with the rising sun

Maestro, 90, is endowed with the rising sun


norman lebrecht

April 29, 2018

Herbert Blomstedt, former conductor of the NHK Symphony Orchestra, has been decorated with Japan’s Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon.

(That’s what it says.)


  • Rob says:

    Decca should give Herbert Blomstedt a new recording contract, he can choose any orchestra and any repertoire. If they’re strapped for cash, make it a download.

  • Peter says:

    What a pity the Proms have not invited Blomstedt in his 90th year. Mind you, they took until 2001 to offer him his debut… Extraordinary conductor.

  • Richard Plashink says:

    Hey look, another treasure CAMI couldn’t keep a hold of…

  • Barry Guerrero says:

    I feel somewhat validated when reading and seeing so much appreciation and affection for Herbert Blomstedt. He’s truly one of the ‘good guys’. I personally had interesting, animated discussions with Blomstedt about Bruckner 8 and Nielsen 6 (a symphony I really like). He was generous with his time and spirit.

    When Blomstedt left S.F. (and Michael Tilson Thomas was hired), I felt somewhat angered by the way it was handled. There were members of the orchestra who helped spread the ugly rumor that Blomstedt wasn’t really all that good. What they didn’t like, in fact, was that Blomstedt was a bit of ‘task master’ who would make them stay until the scheduled end of rehearsals. The ‘press machinery’ and local critic (S.F. Chronicle) made it appear as though Tilson-Thomas had saved the orchestra from obscurity. Nothing could have been further from the truth. Now S.F. audiences pretty much honor Blomstedt every time he returns. There are many – I being among them – who can’t wait for MTT to retire. In public, he has been anything but a nice person. On the podium, he’s been repeating himself over and over (repertoire wise). I liked him in his earlier years, especially in Boston, but that’s judging purely from recordings.

    • Rob says:

      And why has MTT not done Roy Harris’s 3rd with the SFO? Maybe he can come on here and explain seeing as he is not against social media….

      Maybe Blomstedt can record Roy Harris 3 with the SFO on Decca, and a few other American works. He made a Sessions and Harbison disc with them in the 90s.

      Decca, Blomstedt, SFO…… anyone listening, anyone there ????

  • Barry Guerrero says:

    Not likely to happen, Rob. We’re fortunate to have had so much good material with Bomstedt/SFSO as it is. The cost of recording American orchestras is exorbitant. Decca, like so many other labels, treads very lightly these days when it comes to expensive projects with the potential for such small returns. But, . . . you never know.