Malaysia locks out its incoming music director

Malaysia locks out its incoming music director


norman lebrecht

January 12, 2021

From a disgruntled Jun Märkl:

Today, Jan 12, 2021, I was supposed to travel to Malaysia to take up my post as Music Director of Malaysia Philharmonic Orchestra and to conduct 5 concert weeks.
Yesterday, on Monday, Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin of Malaysia announced a nationwide travel ban and a 14-day lockdown in the capital Kuala Lumpur and five states, saying the healthcare system for the country of 32 million people was at a breaking point.

So half a day before my departure I have to face a cancellation of my 5 weeks of concerts and activities in Malaysia. I feel very sorry for the Orchestra and I wish that the situation in the country will improve soon. Nothing is more difficult for an orchestra and musicians not being able to make music and to perform. Wishing the very best for all members of the MPO !


  • V.Lind says:

    Hardly personal to Märkl. Given MPO’s past problems, that headline is very misleading, provocatively so.

  • Lars Ericsson says:

    You should be ashamed for this misleading headline. There’s an explosion of Covid cases in Malaysia. The nation rightfully enters a lockdown. After all, which country wants to lose control of Covid cases like UK. Concerts are not a priority at present.

  • Phil says:

    Completely misleading headline.

  • Gustavo says:

    There is nothing disgruntled in what Jun Märkl has written. This headline is a disgrace.

  • CelloFellow says:

    Extremely misleading headline – again. The whole country is locked down – not just singling out Märkl.

    It really is too bad as the MPO has been incredibly active in performing, streaming, and engaging audiences any & every way they can throughout the lockdowns.

  • Greg Bottini says:

    Boo-hoo, Märkl.
    Boo f*****g hoo.

  • JussiB says:

    Good for him. I wouldn’t fly Malaysian or Indonesian airlines after all the Boeing crashes.

  • Paul Carlile says:

    Well, i think Jun Märkl would be more disgruntled by a misleading headline! Mind you, hardly anyone could be gruntled these difficult days. Is it actually possible to be gruntled about anything?

    • V.Lind says:

      Well, nobody’s gusted with how the politicians have handled it all. Everything is delible in these peccable times. Continuity, as the Maestro has just discovered, is cessant. Even energetic artists such as he have become defatigable, and far from their usual dolent selves.

      Still, he can stay home and use Zoom without having to retain his usual sheveled self.

  • fflambeau says:

    He’s extremely talented: I would not be surprised if he gets other offers from European and American groups.

  • Bryan Dean says:

    Wishing the very best for all members of the MPO !