Martha Argerich leads a trail of exits at Verbier

Martha Argerich leads a trail of exits at Verbier


norman lebrecht

July 22, 2018

Martha Argerich pulled out of this year’s Verbier Festival yesterday. No reason.

Marcelo Puente cancelled on July 11 on health grounds.

Janine Jansens pulled out the same day, saying she is ‘slowly recovering’.

Gautier Capuçon withdrew with a shoulder injury.

And today Amanda Forsyth says she’s out ‘for medical reasons’.

Is the magic mountain losing its charm?

UPDATE: Verbier is hit by further cancellation


  • Petros Linardos says:

    Are you suggesting that four famous artists are lying at the same time?

  • Quodlibet says:

    What a shock that of the several billion people who exist on this planet, half a dozen, who happen to be prominent musicians, could be unwell at the same time! It’s as though they were humans, or something! Maybe it’s a conspiracy!! Oh wait, “conspiracy” means “breathing together” — hold on, wait a minute… — OH WOW, NOW I GET IT – No wonder they all got sick at the same time. It’s obviously contagious!


    In a world where there is more than enough unhappiness and conflict going on, there’s not need to concoct any! This is not really news.

  • Mario Lutz says:

    some bounced check without funds?

  • V.Lind says:

    I can’t remember the number of times I have read stories beginning “Martha Argerich pulled out…” or similar. I don’t give a damn how good she is, I would never book her. There comes a point where the only thing you can depend upon is her undependability. At her age, there is a certain leeway, but if she is that frail or her health is that dodgy, it is time she stops making these commitments to play in places she apparently can’t get to.

    Tine Thing Helseth might take note: much younger, she is already developing something of a history of not being where she is scheduled, without any explanations (or apologies) on her website. She has already lost fans on two continents, to my certain knowledge.

    • Adista says:

      I never understood her status as a pianist anyway, she always seemed to be more hype than substance.

      • jaypee says:

        Don’t you think that an almost 60-year old hype -she’s been around since the early 1960s- is.. well… more than just a hype?

        • ED says:

          Quite! Concert venues still book her because there’s demand – it makes no sense for them to stop. If you’re not interested (or would prefer to avoid the risk), don’t get a ticket – it’s pretty simple really. Also, the rest of us trying to get into her sold-out concerts would be ever so grateful.

          • V.Lind says:

            WHERE? As The Zombies cried in another context so long ago, “She’s not there!”

            95% of what has been posted about her on SD in the last three years or more has been about cancellations. She is unreliable before and above everything else. She must have racked up a fortune in flight cancellation fees.

  • Sue says:

    Sounds like a round of Open tennis tournaments!! The question to ask is the same as for the tennis players; ‘what are they doing which makes them so injury prone?”.

  • MusicLover says:

    Amanda Forsyth did have a bad fall about a week ago that injured her face and hand, and she cancelled Ravinia, so it makes sense she had to cancel Vernier as well. (Details on her FB page…)

  • Fon says:

    I know I heard a rumour (from a pretty damn good musician) that this year’s Verbier Festival would be the last… Maybe problems are catching up with this festival overconcerned with youth and glamour.

  • Esfir Ross says:

    Tickets holder’ll not get refund

  • Ondrey says:

    Despite the withdrawals there is still an enormous number of great artists performing in Verbier during the festival’s 25th edition.

  • Vienna calling says:

    Pavol Breslik was replaced by Bernard Richter in Die Schöpfung who was fantastic.