Maestro stays: BBC renews chief Finn

Maestro stays: BBC renews chief Finn


norman lebrecht

October 22, 2020

Sakari Oramo has been renewed as chief conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra until after the 2023 Proms.

That news will bring great cheer to his many Finnish proteges.


Oramo said: ‘Very often in these strange times my thoughts go back to a miraculous few days in 2011, when all of a sudden I found the most exciting artistic partnership of my life – the BBC Symphony Orchestra. The programme featured ‘Tintagel’ by Arnold Bax, Sibelius’s Third Symphony and vocal works by Sibelius and Kaija Saariaho with my dear Anu Komsi. What a quintessentially BBC SO-like programme that was – and yet probably one that hadn’t been dreamt of before.

‘This is the very strength of the BBC SO programming concept: strong on content, always looking for purposeful combinations of masterpieces old and new, well known and, above all, less familiar. The ability of this miraculous orchestra to transform itself according to the music they play (literally ANY music) – and their warm-hearted supportiveness, instinctive brilliance and ability to capture the essence of what makes a great musical performance – make them unique. From our Studio Concerts and recordings, through to our Barbican concerts, performances on tour in the UK and abroad and of course at the BBC Proms, including three editions of the Last Night of the Proms, I have relished and enjoyed every single performance together. May there be many more in the future, and may the BBC SO continue to blossom as London’s, the UK’s and the world’s beacon for artistic inventiveness.’




  • Wally Francis says:

    This is superb news for MUSIC LOVERS as opposed to all those Personality Trackers who all too frequently exercise their warped opinions about individual musicians on this site.

  • pjl says:

    His London concerts have been a great highlight of recent years and for me he is the finest Elgar conductor of this century ; a trip to Stockholm a year ago to hear two concerts with Elgar 1 was one of the best holidays I have ever taken.

  • J Morris Jones says:

    Wow, very warm words most directly expressed. I’d imagine the orchestra in return are happy with his stewardship (I’ve seen an interview or two with musicians offering favourable words). This (and the orch’s performances) certainly gives the lie to the Ormandy observation: ‘show me an orchestra that likes its conductor, and I’ll show you a lousy orchestra’.

  • Concertgoer says:

    Saw this guy live in Paris last year, Tchaikovsky 4. Top 10 worst concerts of my life, and I’ve seen many.