Breaking: Currentzis slaps greedy Lucerne

Breaking: Currentzis slaps greedy Lucerne


norman lebrecht

November 21, 2019

We have received the following message from musicAeterna and Teodor Currentzis, nullifying the Lucerne Festival’s plan to sell tickets for their rehearsals for $100 each. Here’s what they write:

As tickets are being sold for the open rehearsal of musicAeterna (conducted by Teodor Currentzis), which is planned for April 3 as part of the Lucerne festival, we would like to inform you that a mistake has occurred on the festival administration’s part and will be corrected as soon as possible. All musicAeterna’s open rehearsals are free for the audience to attend; the same goes for master classes, lectures and other educational projects curated by Teodor Currentzis in Russia and Europe. This is maestro’s position of principle.

The educational programme is a vital part of musicAeterna’s activity and ideology: in modern art, the audience is just as much a notable part of the creative process as the authors and performers are. A number of projects by Teodor Currentzis are accompanied by the ‘contemporary listener’ laboratory – educational events such as open rehearsals, meetups with artists, and master classes; this way, the audience can study the performed piece in great detail and witness the process of its creation.

We expect the Lucerne festival officials to refund any payments received for the tickets and to organize free attendance for the open rehearsal.



  • Robert Roy says:


  • sam says:

    “the audience is just as much a notable part of the creative process as the authors and performers are”

    So if I cough, snore, let my cell phone ring, during the concert, I’m just contributing my part to the Beethoven 9? I knew I was a genius.

    • Ed says:

      yes sam, you’re a stable genius…

    • anon says:

      No, the subversive part of his quote is not the part about the audience — Currentzis is just using the audience as bait — the subversive part is his equating “authors and performers”, putting them both on the same “creative process” pedestal.

      Here is the translation of what Currentzis is really saying: “I, Currentzis, the performer, is as notable as Mozart, the author, in the creative process.”

  • Tony Britten says:

    Interesting that ‘Sam’ is commenting anonymously. Whatever one’s views on Currentzis, it seems to me that he has done a brave and principled thing – is it necessary to be constantly belittling him?

  • Rob says:

    He is the greatest conductor of the ‘younger’ generation.

  • Michael says:

    He has done a good thing here.

  • OSMFan says:

    Now that everybody spared 100$ on a rehearsal with Currentzis, they can spend it to enlighten themselves listening to the great “Orchestra Giovanile Luigi Cherubini” being rehearsed by RIccardo Muti
    Strange : This real autopromotional “Riccardo Muti Music” product of 3 DVDs released in October 2018 didn’t generate any nasty headlines.
    But it is Riccardo Muti and it is obviously funnier to put some dirt on Currentzis…

    • Tamino says:

      Producing content for a DVD set and manufacturing it costs substantial money. Attending rehearsals accrues no additional costs. (except for a couple of ushers maybe who operate the hall doors.)
      You are comparing cucumbers with foie gras.

  • M2N2K says:

    In principle, I don’t see anything wrong in charging admission for rehearsals, but triple digit prices certainly seem excessive, though if enough people are willing to pay that much, then why not?

  • mercutio says:

    Excellent, thankyou, Mr. Currentzis! Michael Häfliger seems no longer being able to manage Lucerne Festival. A few months before he cancelled the Easter Festival an the wonderful Piano Festival in Autumn, then occured the mobbing accusations against him…and now Currentzis nullifying Häfligers prices for the rehearsal!