Conductor lacks balls hits Finland’s front page

Conductor lacks balls hits Finland’s front page


norman lebrecht

December 21, 2019

Leif Segerstam’s attack on Susanna Mälkki  is heading the newstands in Helsinki.


  • PHF says:

    His words have something in common with his two hundred symphonies, both won’t make a difference.

  • Bill says:

    Credit where it’s due: in the US, even the most outrageous utterance from a conductor would probably garner nothing more than a mention somewhere in the dark recesses of the New York Times website for about a day.

  • Bone says:

    Wish he had been more direct: in his opinion, her interpretations cause the orchestra to sound weak. Alas, he went the slang route.

    • Nils Angmar says:

      I take it you read neither the first nor the second interview, in which he couldn’t have been „more direct“. The slang interpretation only functions when you pretend that he never said that the atmosphere on stage and in the hall was directly related to conductors‘s testosterone/estrogen levels, he had disagreed with women being conductors over the course of his entire career and conceding to having ‚sinned’ with his ‚sexist views for most of his life‘.

      • Luigi Nonono says:

        That doesn’t mean what he says isn’t truthful. Some women do have balls, and you need them to be a conductor. Most don’t get that. Lucile Lawrence, a great pedagogue, told her female students “you have to play like a man.” We discussed it, and the issue is being strong, tough, and being able to match up, tonally, to what the men are doing, because men have a stronger sound.

  • Rob says:

    She says “I can only feel free if I forget about myself.”

  • Pianofortissimo says:

    I think the best way to make peace would be if Susanna Mälkki would conduct one of Leif Segerstam’s 300 master works.