Just in: Rising US baton wins German orchestra

Just in: Rising US baton wins German orchestra


norman lebrecht

May 20, 2019

The South Carolina-born Jonathon Heyward, has been named Chief Conductor of the Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie, starting January 2021.

Heyward, 26, is presently assistant conductor at the Halle Orchestra in Manchester.

The NWDP, based in Herford, plays across North Rhine-Westphalia in such towns as Paderborn, Gütersloh and Detmold.

Heyward will be 28 when he takes over the same age as Andris Nelsons was when he joined the same orch in 2006.


  • Carolyn says:

    Sic transit gloria mundi… I am sorry, but they elected a funny haircut their Chief conductor. No other qualities of this “baton” could possibly justify such choice. I know, Grand Prize in Besancon etc., but it only proves the general direction our musical world heads to.

    • Michelle says:

      Strong opinions Carolyn, I assume you know him well then?

    • Kim Aylward says:

      Racism is never attractive!!!! What a vile attack! This says so much more about you than this amazing young conductor!!!!

    • Odin says:

      What an odious comment from an obviously racist bigot! I hope her comment is removed as it infringes all decency! They are very lucky to have bagged this young conductor who is currently performing to rave reviews across the world!

    • Larry W says:

      He was chosen because he is a cut above.
      And by more than a hair.

    • LolaViola says:

      Try working with him! He’s an excellent talent and an exemplary human being.

  • Anon1 says:

    Proof that you can be Black AND successful, Brandon.

  • Mick the Knife says:

    I hope thats not a sanctioned publicity photo.