Mirga’s make-do orchestra saves Salzburg’s War Requiem

Mirga’s make-do orchestra saves Salzburg’s War Requiem


norman lebrecht

July 20, 2021

The Gustav Mahler Youth Orchestra stepped in this weekend where the quarantine-anxious City of Birmingham SO feared to tread.

With considerable help from the foreign ministry in Vienna, the Mahler orchestra brought in 91 musicians from 18 countries across Europe.

Rehearsal time was tight but the performance was excellent.

Bernhard Neuhoff of BR Klassik reports here.


photo: DG


  • Wurm says:

    It was OK, I am sure, if hardly ground-breaking. But in your world, Norman, we know blondie can do no wrong, so you choose the reviews you cite accordingly to match the myth you have attempted to create about her…. Not every one is taken in, fortunately.

  • Gustavo says:

    Presume there’ll be a DG release?

  • Alexander says:

    Mirga is a good girl. Another one the day before yesterday was ( guess who at 1) …. of course Elina Stikhina 😉

  • Amos says:

    One can only hope that every precaution was stringently adhered to. The public health risks of bringing 91 people together from 18 countries are enormous.

    • Petros Linardos says:

      What kind of adequate precaution can be taken within a chorus, other than admitting only vaccinated singers?

      • Amos says:

        Only vaccinated singers with documented high titers of neutralizing Ab and a negative COVID test the day of the performance after documenting that they had been in isolation for 7-10 days. That said, as I implied, it is idiotic. You couldn’t unintentionally create a more likely scenario for spreading an airborne viral disease if you tried.

    • Nick says:

      91 people from 18 countries?!?! WOW! How terrible!!!
      We had Hundreds of Thousands from ALL OVER THE WORLD shoulder to shoulder, hugging, kissing, perspiring, spitting, screaming and yelling into your faces and ears and noses and mouths in European Football and all was OK.

      But, of course 91 quiet persons in a concert — this is not OK.
      Amos, you should see a good psychiatrist!! To put it in plain words: you are a cultural IDIOT!

  • Jan Kaznowski says:

    I’m looking forward to the day when Mirga and Yuja play together. SD will implode

  • Barry Guerrero says:

    The GMYO is hardly a ‘make-do’ orchestra. I’m sure it wasn’t the best of conditions or situation, but those players are skilled enough to have handled the task at hand.

  • Singerjohn says:

    I think to refer to “where the quarantine-anxious CBSO feared to tread” is grossly unfair and sloppy journalism, Norman. There were many large and expensive obstacles in the orchestra’s way as their announcement of cancellation made clear.

    • Wurm says:

      Love him or loathe him, that’s Norman for you – clickbait-led, styler of often misleading / inaccurate headlines and articles, pro-Mirga, Mahler (yawn) and anything or anyone Jewish, anti Domingo and competition juries, fascinated with Yuja… but, he might be doing something right judging by his readers and comments posts.

      • Petros Linardos says:

        And lots of click bait on issues where people have strong opinions: Bocelli, Covid, Trump…

        But posts on good music and some well informed or humorous readers’ comments make the blog worthwhile for many of us.

    • Gustavo says:

      “many large and expensive obstacles”

      Above all, Brexit.

      • IC225 says:

        Erm…how, exactly? This project had been planned for several years and any administrative difficulties relating to Brexit would long since have been resolved, as they have been by other UK orchestras (such as the LSO) which are also continuing to plan and undertake tours in the EU. The issue here was the one that currently dominates all artistic planning (and makes Brexit look like a gnat-bite), Covid-19 – not just the problems around travel, but the fact that the CBSO Chorus has not been able to rehearse for over a year and was unable to prepare the work in the very limited time available. All there in the public statements…