It’s not all about Yuja

It’s not all about Yuja


norman lebrecht

March 04, 2020

Slipped Disc has just topped two million monthly readers for the first time.

In the 29 days of February we had 1.87 million, itself a record. Add two days of March for a full 31-day month and the total reaches a staggering 2.033 million.

Some have suggested that the pianist Yuja Wang, who had an unfortunate experience in Canada, acts as the site’s main clickbait.

Not at all.

The month’s top stories were:
1 Angela Hewitt’s smashed piano

2 Coronavirus

3 Yuja Wang

4 Andrea Bocelli’s first cancellation

Thank you, everyone, for your attention and participation in the world’s #1 classical music and opera news site.




  • Jambo says:

    When Norman congratulates himself for SD’s viewing figures:


    When Alan Davey congratulates himself for BBC Radio 3 listening figures:

    • norman lebrecht says:

      Let’s see if you can spot the difference.

      BBC Radio 3 operated on £38 million of public fees in 2018/19 (last available figures).
      Slipped Disc is an owner-operated start-up.
      BBC claims around 2 million annual listeners.
      Slipped Disc has 2 million monthly readers.

      • Paul Dawson says:

        Are you comparing like with like here? My understanding is that there are 2 million individuals listening to Radio 3 an unspecified number of times annually, whilst you are claiming 2 million hits, from an unspecified number of individuals monthly. I have no doubts about your success and how much you deserve it, but you do yourself no favours with invalid comparisons.

    • spellman says:


  • Dee Miner says:

    Despite what Norman says, it is often about about Yuja or Mirga on this blog. He can’t resist the pull of either woman, if not always for their musical achievements – clothing or babies draw a crowd, like moths round a flame, and Norman knows this. Just look at the choice of accompanying images.

    Ylang Ylang is sometimes taken to task. Reputable artists (including former tenors and opera music directors), educators found on the naughty step for various misdemeanors, together with the regular flier of Putin Airways who misses his engagements and leaves a toothpick on podiums so he can walk in disheveled and late to conduct someone else’s carefully prepared performance before turning to the public just long enough to collect his (large) pay cheque before increasing his carbon footprint once more and corrupt competition jury chairs who feather their own egos with student ‘successes’ or the movements and signings of agency panjandrums – these are all the life-blood of Norman’s online kingdom. And for this, we his faithful readers, thank him.

    • The View from America says:


      We could add two more to the list: regular coverage of “Jewish” issues (not unwelcome), and far-too-generous lashings of Beethoven — as if that topic wasn’t being covered “ad nauseam” everywhere else this year …

    • Sue Sonata Form says:

      Yes, what IS it with the toothpick?

  • Marina Frolova-Walker says:

    The threat of being posted on your site after death has been a good incentive to drive safely

  • DeepSouthSenior says:

    Congratulations, Norman! In so many ways, this site is a reflection of life itself – the good, the bad, and the ugly. The most trivial matters are thrown into the mix with serious discussions of high art. That’s a large part of the charm, and the fun, too!

  • sam says:

    I would attribute the success of this site to the fact that every classical musician, administrator, industry insider, obsessively checks the site to make sure there is no post about them!

    And for those who are unfortunate enough to become the objects of SD’s affections (or should I say obsession) (Yuja, Mirga…), they check even more to see what demented comments the site has decided not to censor about them.

    In all seriousness, SD is a force to be reckoned with in the classical music scene, the NYT regularly cites it and steals stories from it, much to NL’s delight and chagrin.

    • Saxon Broken says:

      I doubt Yuja gives a damn what anyone on this site writes; does she even know/care that the site exists?

  • Guy Dammann says:

    I think the only fair response to this news is to say Congratulations.

  • Samuel Marcos says:

    You math seems faulty… 1,8700,000 divided by 29 days is the equivalent of 64,483 clicks per day. Multiply that by 31 and you get 1,998,973. That’s close to 2 million but not quite. Not to mention that you are claiming a fact that didn’t actually happened but instead could of happened.

    Good going Norman. Clickbait indeed.

  • Miss Wang or not Miss Wang. Congratulation Norman! I am not always agree with you and that s normal like with a good old friend, but you diserve this success!

    • norman lebrecht says:

      thank you!

      • PS : I heard few weeks ago your itws of Chereau, Muti and the GOAT for me, Chailly for the BBC. It’s very interisting. But I regret that you don’t continue do do this kind of itw. There’s a possiblity to do a second time that kind of things in future with some others directors?

  • M. Arnold says:

    SD is an excellent open forum which is both educational and enjoyable.Thanks for doing this.

  • Karl says:

    Where do Domingo stories fall on the list? It seems that they get the most replies.

  • Anthony M. Gigliotti says:

    Congratulations, Norman. Thank you for all your hard work. Visiting this site is always entertaining and informative.