Harding cancels LA with repetitive strain

Harding cancels LA with repetitive strain


norman lebrecht

October 23, 2018

The LA Phil, caught short by a late Daniel Harding cancellation, has had to change its programme and press assistant conductor Paolo Bortolameolli into service.

Paolo will conduct

KNUSSEN O Hototogisu! fragment of a Japonisme (U.S. premiere)
SAINT-SAËNS Piano Concerto No. 5, “Egyptian”
BEETHOVEN Symphony No. 5
after Harding phoned in the recurrence of a  a repetitive strain injury in his right shoulder.


  • He can’t conduct with the left arm?

    • Jack says:

      Guess you’re not a conductor.

      • No, but I’ve played under conductors who can rehearse and conduct just fine without needing to mirror left and right hands and I’ve played under conductors for whom using both doesn’t help.

        It doesn’t take two hands to beat time and cue and it doesn’t take two hands to explain what you want at rehearsal.

        Keyboard players have been conducting with their chins for decades.

        • Saxon Broken says:

          Conducting from the keyboard is doable when playing something like Mozart or Baroque music. But something like Bruckner or more modern stuff really does require a conductor able to use both hands.

      • Bill says:

        Nothing about conducting that necessarily has to be done with the right arm. Donald Runnicles does quite well as a lefty. But he does have the use of his right arm for the stuff many conductors do with their left.

  • erich says:

    If he didn’t flail so much, he might have fewer problems.

  • Ruben Greenberg says:

    The best way to avoid repetitive strain is not to take the repeats!

  • jonathan dunsby says:

    This was the original program
    KNUSSEN : O Hototogisu! fragment of a Japonisme (US premiere)
    Olga NEUWIRTH : Masaot/Clocks without Hands (West Coast premiere)
    BRUCKNER : Symphony No. 4

  • Edgar says:

    Overperformed and undermaintained: not good for conductors’ health… Sorry. Cynicism aside, I hope Daniel recovers well. He might benefit looking at footage of Richard Strauss: the man barely uses his arms and hands, and mostly his eyes – keeping time and giving only the most necessary indications.