Sick bulletin: Mark Elder is out for a month

Sick bulletin: Mark Elder is out for a month


norman lebrecht

July 09, 2019

Message from the Halle Orchestra music director:

I am very sorry to have to announce that I will be unable to conduct my wonderful orchestra at Thursday’s performance of the Leningrad Symphony. After a period of very painful problems with my neck, and after consulting several doctors and undergoing scans and procedures, I have been advised not to conduct for the next month.

While I am extremely sorry not to be able to perform this extraordinary work, I am delighted that, at very short notice, Jonathon Heyward, the Hallé’s Assistant Conductor, will conduct the Hallé. Jonathon is at the start of a brilliant career, having already achieved significant international success: winning a major European conducting competition prior to taking up his post at the Hallé, and recently being designated Chief Conductor of the Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie in Germany.

I have every hope that I will be with you on Thursday night to talk in the first part about plans with the Festival for a major event around the opening of The Factory, a building and an idea we are all looking forward to with a tremendous sense of anticipation and excitement.


  • Player says:


    • Paul Brownsey says:

      It’s common enough to use the possessive when speaking of the relation between a chief conductor and the orchestra of which she is chief conductor. Didn’t Barbirolli speak of the BPO as “Karajan’s band”?

    • Ralph Bateman says:

      If, using the double quotes, you Google

      “mark elder” “my orchestra”

      there are many, many entries.

    • Patrick says:


    • Phillip Ayling says:

      Any chance that Jonathon Heyward will issue a press releasing saying “Even though it is short notice, I am really excited to be conducting HIS orchestra for a performance of the ‘Leningrad Symphony’?

    • Maria says:

      Yes! Nothing wrong or pompous with that. It’s his orchestra until it’s not for whatever reason like any other British conductor would say. More importantly is not being pedantic but to wish Mark well and a full recovery so he is back conducting ‘his band’ very soon.

    • J says:

      Er, “my” doesn’t necessarily indicate possession, as in “my friends”, “my family”, “my home town” etc. I think he’s just affectionately saying that the Hallé is the orchestra to which he belongs!

      In any case, I wish Mark Elder a most speedy recovery and I hope he will be back on the podium soon!

      • Una says:

        It’s a very British and colloquial turn of phrase meaning nothing possessive – just what it is. You ate quite right and Mark is being greatly missed tonight at the Proms as is dear Sarah Connolly.

  • Leslie says:

    I am sorry for Sir Mark. I wish him a speedy recovery, BUT

    YEA Jonathon!!!!!