Philadephia’s Brussels concert is disrupted by Palestine protests

Philadephia’s Brussels concert is disrupted by Palestine protests


norman lebrecht

May 25, 2018

The first concert of Philadelphia’s Europe and Israel tour was targeted by demonstrators.

Two young women shouted ‘Free Palestine, Boycott Israel’ during the Brahms D minor concerto with soloist Hélène Grimaud.

Yannick led the orchestra off stage.

The concert resumed after a break of 25 minute.

The anti-Philadelphia campaign is largely home-grown.

Cellist John Koen posted:


As the President would say: Sad.

UPDATE: What Yannick said.


  • barry guerrero says:

    I’m not surprised that protests SPROUTed in BRUSSELS.

    Sorry – couldn’t help myself. I know this is a serious subject.

  • Pedro says:

    I was there and have written about this another post.

  • Rabbi Feinshmeker says:

    I am not surprised that the demonstrators were from the side of Israel haters, because we allow the orchestras and the artists to play without interruption. We love music, “they” hate everything human or caltural.

    • Albert Castillo says:

      Well said. People should listen – and play- more music. Anyone has a right to an opinion, even if his/her opinion is not well grounded. But we are talking here about destroying music and culture with an act of protest for people who bomb, murder and have also destroyed and dishonoured his own rich cultural heritage, and are not willing to sit to discuss matters in civilized form.

      Less hate and more music.

  • Ben says:

    People protest, nobody listens, then people start disrupting things just for getting more attention, then still nobody listens…. eventually, some extreme guy would bomb this and burn that just for getting even more attention.

    IMHO this is the early signs of terrorism.

    When will this end? Once the orchestra has left, what are these protesters gonna do? Can’t just sit there doing nothing! You see what I am getting at…

  • Sara says:

    There are no such people called Palestinians because there is not such state called Palestine and never will be. Terrorists and their supporters don’t deserve to run a state. There are only Jews and Jews haters, that history proved one time after another they will always lose to the chosen people.

    • La Verita says:

      And when someone moves into your home and throws you out, you will love them for it – right?

      • Joe says:

        And, are you equally concerned about the 800,000 Jews displaced from Arab countries in 1948, or do you reserve your ire for Israel?

      • Jerry Hirsch says:

        La Verita, the Jews purchased vast tracts of land, it was five Arab armies that tried to throw them out!

  • JoBe says:

    The one good thing that Belgium has is its heritage: the beautiful churches, the opulent museums, the magnificent town halls and belfries, etc. A wonderful place for tourists – were it not for the Belgian society, a depressingly sick society.

    • Wolfgang Heiremans says:

      Dear Jobe, please do not make a generality that Belgian society would be sick. I am Belgian, I live in Molenbeek (hellhole of Europe) and I can assure you that the majority of our population is very pleasant.

      • JoBe says:

        Dear Wolfgang, your “Parti Socialiste” is even more depraved and useless than the French one. And I shall not mention other terrible Belgian political parties. Individually of course, Belgians are very nice when and if they are not nasty. But as a society… I am sorry.

        • Zelda Macnamara says:

          Jobe, I lived in Belgium for five years and I would not call the society “sick”, nor the political parties. I don’t know where you come from, but if any country has a “sick” society it is the UK, which unfortunately is reflected in its political parties. And to get back to the actual topic, you can’t judge a whole society by the actions of two people who don’t understand the futility of this kind of protest.

          • Derek says:


            You ask Jobe not to judge Belgian society, but then you have judged the whole UK society as ‘sick’ in a sweeping generalisation. Please, you know it is not so simple!

  • barry guerrero says:

    . . . after all, they invented waffles and sprouts.

  • muslit says:

    My whole life has been music, I’m a Jew, and I believe in a Palestinian state. And I don’t mind embarrasing, inconvenient protests such as these. Mr. Trump’s announcement that he was recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, and moving the embassy from Tel Aviv, simply swept aside 70 years of American neutrality. This protest was collateral damage to that decision, and to the bloodshed that occurred on the day of the embassy’s inauguration. The aura of classical music is not above the realities of the present.