Stalled BBC orch adds extra conductor

Stalled BBC orch adds extra conductor


norman lebrecht

August 19, 2020

The excellent English conductor Alpesh Chauhan has been named associate conductor of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, which has barely played in the past five months.

It will come together once more on 26 August when Alpesh will conduct a concert of Hindemith, Wagner and Schoenberg. No audience, unfortunately. The show will be streamed on the BBCSO website.


  • Violist86 says:

    I cannot agree he is far from being an excellent conductor besed on the concerts I performed with him. He does, on the other hand, fit in the current fashion of giving visibility of minorities , that is putting sometimes under-prepared artist on the front of the profession (never mind merit, preparation or skill!) just because of their race or sex…

    How can anyone think this is the way to real equality?

    • Paul Brownsey says:

      “I cannot agree he is far from being an excellent conductor”

      That means you think he is is NOT far from being an excellent conductor.”

    • Symphony musician says:

      I hate that this has immediately become about diversity. Given that it has, in my opinion he is already better than many very successful pale-skinned conductors, both musically and technically. Ergo he deserves his place in the conducting profession, and his career is on a firm upward trajectory, again deservedly in my opinion.

    • Violist87 says:

      I can agree that you are a bad writer… With the attitude you just demonstrated I would have struggled to work with you as well. Are you perhaps a bit racist and angry at a non-white being promoted?
      “I cannot agree he is far from being an excellent conductor”
      In the end, I think I agree with your first sentence, he is an excellent conductor.

  • Cynical Bystander says:

    “…..which has barely played in the past five months.”

    Along with how many more , here and everywhere else other than in Germany and Austria?

    What is becoming increasingly obvious is that maybe barely playing, or more likely, not playing at all, is now more of a reality than a possibility.

  • A bassist says:

    More BBC bashing by NL.
    The BBC orchestras and their musicians have produced good recorded content throughout this lock-down – recorded from the musicians’ homes and mixed to the highest professional standards.
    All of the BBC orchestras are to resume regular recorded broadcasts within weeks.

    NL – I got to know you as a writer and journalist through your Lebrecht Interviews for the BBC. I even bought one of your books!

    • fflambeau says:

      I don’t see this post as bashing the BBC so much as a criticism a group hiring a conductor, gifted of course, when no music is likely to be played.

  • Janet says:

    Congratulations Alpesh.

  • Icarus says:

    The BBC deserves a good deal of criticism and especially now.
    Its current obsession with identity politics and ‘woke’ virtue signalling has been amply demonstrated to be out of kilter with the vast majority of the people it supposedly serves.

    That is having serious enough repercussions in its public standings but watch this space when it comes to its future with classical music.
    We are already seeing the mandatory box ticking of ‘gender equality’ and ‘diversity’ reflected in programming.

    It is perhaps time they ‘woke’ up to the fact that not everyone shares the political leanings of the ‘enlightened’ bubbles so prevalent in the upper levels of its management. Classical music followers want the best music and the best musicians determined by equality of opportunity not by the poisonous forced equality of outcome.

    Right now the Beeb’s only hope for survival is the quality of its programming. The unspoken taboo is that a meritocracy is ultimately at odds with the politics of ‘equality’ and the BBC will pay the price for meddling in this arena.