Death of a UK conductor, 90

Death of a UK conductor, 90


norman lebrecht

December 10, 2019

The violist and conductor Simon Streatfeild died in December 7.

A viola student of Frederick Riddle, he was principal viola of the LSO and a founder with Neville Marriner of the Academy of St Martin in the Fields.

Like Marriner, he took up the baton, playing a formative role in Canada with the orchestras of Quebec, Vancouver, Manitoba and Kitchener-Waterloo.


  • Bernard Labadie says:

    Simon was the kindest and sweetest man, true and honest in his music making as in life. He was an inspiration and a wonderful mentor during my early years in Québec as an apprentice conductor and chorus master with the Orchestre symphonique de Québec. My condolences to Elizabeth and the whole family. May his gentle soul rest in peace.

  • MacroV says:

    He was the conductor in the late 70s/early 80s at the Courtenay Youth Music Center on Vancouver Island. He was the first professional conductor I ever played with and while I didn’t play with many in my relatively short musical life, he was probably the best (him or Otto-Werner Mueller, anyway). Really enjoyable to work with.

  • JamesM says:

    Splendid conductor, outstanding violist and a lovely man who made significant contributions to music in Canada for many years. Condolences to the family.

  • Marc Béliveau , orchestre symphonique de Montréal says:

    Mr Streatfield was one of our conductors at the National Youth orchestra of Canada in 1985. I have the fondest memories of a kind, respectful and humble musician whom I had the privilege of working with. He conducted Rachmaninov’s second symphony and I will always fondly remember. My condolences to the family.

  • MSC says:

    I have to be pedantic and take issue with the implication that there is one orchestra in Manitoba: the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra is a professional orchestra that has been in existence since 1947. Streatfield took over from its founder Ruben Gurevich in 1972, nine years after its founding.

  • He was a remarkably fine man who understood the difference from the podium to the performer’s chair. I NEVER felt more understanding and cooperation with a conductor and his concertmaster than I did with Simon!!

    Bless you dear Simon…

  • Mark Fewer says:

    Sad to hear this news. He was an integrity-first musician…happy memories of performing concerti with him in the past. Rest well, Simon. We will all miss you.

  • Lorraine Pouliot says:

    Simon was a splendid conductor and a gentleman. He supported the musicians of Orchestre Symphonique de Québec with all of his kindness and sweetness. My
    condolences ro his wfe Elizabeth and the whole family. He was a great musician. I will miss you!

  • Jean-Eric Soucy says:

    Simon was a real mentor to so many young musicians, including myself. He was also a very inspiring example of a humble and honest musician, always putting the music in front of everything. He loved and respected the musicians with whom he work, and I like to think that it was absolutely reciprocal.
    Sincères condoléances à Elisabeth et sa famille

  • Bryan EPPERSON says:

    Sad news when one hears of the passing of a first class artist and consummate gentleman.

    Simon Streatfield was both of these.

    He brought integrity, honesty and dignity to the MUSIC, fellow musicians and audiences alike. How fortunate we all are to have known this fine man.

    Bryan EPPERSON