Just in: Young Brit, 26, to head Austrian orchestra

Just in: Young Brit, 26, to head Austrian orchestra


norman lebrecht

September 27, 2018

Kerem Hasan, winner of the 2017 the Nestlé and Salzburg Festival Young Conductors Award, has been named chief conductor of the Tiroler Symphonieorchester Innsbruck, starting a year from now.

A protégé of Bernard Haitink, Kerem has conducted the Concertgebouw in Mahler 9 and is among the conductors who are standing in this season for the sacked music director Daniele Gatti.

The deal was sealed by Enrico Fischer at KDSchmid.


  • Luigi Nonono says:

    Long hair, no matter how lovely, is as distracting on a man as on a woman conducting. I hope he keeps it close to his head.

    • Robert Groen says:

      Get a life, Luigi!

    • Bruce says:

      If the hair bothers you, maybe listening to the music will help.

    • John Borstlap says:

      Conductors’ long hair is like the tailcoat: part of the professional gear. It makes the expressive details more visible for the audience so that they can follow the musical narrative better. In one of his reviews, Debussy included a description of the hairdo of Arthur Nikisch (1855-1922) as part of the famous conductor’s technique: drooping at particularly sad passages, and rising-up fiercely when the horns’ heroism cleared the mood.

      Bald conductors have therefore to rely on a more thorough technique and compensate with musical intensity what they lack in hairy symbolism. Therefore female conductors can draw more easily the audience’s attention to their expressive prowess, also in cases when it’s rather in the hair than in the musicianship.

    • Thomasina says:

      I think that many people remember the young Muti’s hairstyle.

    • Petros Linardos says:

      Question to orchestral musicians: how much can orchestral players really notice of the conductor’s hair?

  • Sue says:

    Well done! Looking forward to hearing great things from this fellow. Innsbruck – perfection!

  • Anon says:

    Karim is a very good talented young conductor. He does the job – with or without hair!

    • Pedro says:

      +1. His Mahler 9 in Amsterdam was splendid. Of course, it has been rehearsed by Haitink who conducted the two previous concerts…

  • dorset richard says:

    will he be in charge of Innsbruck opera as well ?