Message from Gly:

We were very sad to hear of the death of Gordon Sandison (known as Donnie), who performed in many operas at Glyndebourne between 1982 and 2004 including The Bartered Bride (pictured), Il barbiere di Siviglia and Carmen.

Gordon’s family have asked us to pass on the details of his funeral, which will be held on Friday 7th December, 3.30pm at Peterborough Crematorium. The reception will be at The Great Northern Hotel, Peterborough.


Photo: Gordon Sandison as as Krusina and Eiddwen Harrhy as Ludmila in The Bartered Bride, 1999. Photographer: Mike Hoban

After an early spell as principal baritone at Scottish Opera, Gordon sang major roles all over Europe, appearing in ‘Jenufa’ with Simon Rattle), ‘Pelleas Et Melisandre’ with Abbado, ‘La Traviata’ with Solti, ‘Cherubin’ with John Eliot Gardiner, ‘Tosca’ and ‘Die Meistersinger’ with Haitink and much else.

The Finnish music director will leave the Philharmonia Orchestra in 2021 after 13 years as principal conductor, it was announced this afternoon.

Esa-Pekka Salonen said: ‘I have been unbelievably fortunate to conduct the great orchestras of the globe: a simultaneously inspiring and humbling part of my night job. Though since my debut 35 years ago – surprising no one more than me – and in my 10 years as Principal Conductor, I find myself returning again and again to the Philharmonia.

‘This is a group that juxtaposes world-class talent and star-power with an ease of musical communication, personal warmth, real risk-taking on stage and off, and always good humour. The open-mindedness and confidence with which they supported me at my debut was a masterclass in how we should all treat each other musically and beyond. This and our on-going collaboration is in no small part why I became a conductor at all, and why I still enjoy the complex but ultimately very inspiring human interaction that we call conducting. I do not say lightly that they are family, and I am honoured to be a part of what will be their fantastic future.’


The Alma Quartet were on Dutch TV last night.

The quartet performance is impeccable, the conjuction impenetrably Dutch.

The death was announced early today of Juan José Olives, founder of the Chamber Orchestra of the Auditorium of Zaragoza, known as Grupo Enigma.

He was a widely sought-after guest conductor and teacher.

The pianist Paul Lewis has resigned as co-Artistic Director of the Leeds International Piano Competition.

That leaves Adam Gatehouse in sole charge.

Paul’s decision follows shortly on the arrival of a new chief executive, Fiona Sinclair, though the events may be unconnected.

Paul says: ‘The journey at LIPC over the last three years has been an endlessly fascinating one, full of discoveries, challenges, and surprises along the way. It has been a huge thrill and a privilege to have played a part in the process of renewing the competition, and I have no doubt that The Leeds will continue to evolve and develop in exciting ways over the coming years.’



AskonasHolt have just announced the signing of the Bulgarian soprano Sonya Yoncheva, whose career has been nurtured by the Swiss agency Ariosi.

Donagh Collins, Askonas Holt chief exec, says: ‘What a joy to welcome a singer with the class and style of Sonya Yoncheva to our family of artists here at Askonas Holt.’

One agency’s joy is another’s bleak Christmas.


Photo © Kristian Schuller

We are delighted to learn that Thilo Fechner, a member of the Vienna Philharmonic viola section, has married Miki Nakatani, a Japanese film and television star.

They met two years ago at a Vienna Phil concert in Tokyo.

You see, some good does come out of incessant touring.

If only for the violas.


Jonathan Tetelman crashed out last night shortly before curtain for reasons the company has not clarified.

Apparently, it was to late to call in his cover.

Natalya Romaniw, playing Mimi, posted this:

… it has to (be) recognised that David Butt Philip was nothing short of AMAZING at 2 hours notice tonight to sing my Rodolfo!!! 😍 I ❤️ him a lot. It’s no secret! He is my favourite tenor of all time and I cannot wait for #OHPIolanta in our own right Opera Holland Parknext season!! ❤️ you DBP XXX #HERO



‘She has gone off to Stuttgart…’

‘Please watch something else.’

This just went up in the streets of Budapest.



Since the top of the picture gets cropped on our page, you can see here that it announces Giuseppe Verdi’s Turandot.

It also omits to announce who is singing the role of Turandot.


Musicians at the Orchestre de l’Opéra de Paris have written to the Minister of Culture saying that while he has the right to appoint a successor to Stéphane Lissner as general director, they want to be part of the process of choosing the next music director, successor to Philippe Jordan.

Until recently, the job has been in the gift of the general director and the government.

I’m sure they’ll get what they want if they burn a few tyres on the Champs Elysées.

Read on here.