Spin as they might, the London Symphony Orchestra are now in a hole sixty feet deeper than the Barbican Hall.
They’ve had six months to get used to the idea that Simon Rattle had bought a parachute and was bailing out over Munich, and they’ll still enjoy his services as music director for the next two years and a half.
But the LSO’s entire business plan was predicated on Rattle bringing them profitable international tours, a high profile and wealthy donors. Covid and Brexit have killed the tours and their profile takes a fatal hit with Rattle’s departure.
The options are:
– to go for another well-connected conductor – Antonio Pappano and Gianandrea Noseda are two internal favourites;
– to grab a young talent who’s ready for the next step – Mirga, if she’s willing;
– or to completely change course and devise a survival plan for post-Brexit Britain.
Time is short and they desperately need fresh thinking.