Breaking: Birmingham chooses a non-Mirga

Breaking: Birmingham chooses a non-Mirga


norman lebrecht

September 14, 2021

The Japanese conductor Kazuki Yamada has just been announced as Chief Conductor and Artistic Advisor of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, starting in spring 2023.

A Seiji Ozawa protege, Yamada has been working with the players intensely since 2018 as Principal Guest Conductor.

His appointment is no great surprise, though the announcement is a little sooner than expected. He is very well liked by players and subscribers. We called it here first.

Yamada, 42, is also Principal Conductor and Artistic Director of Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte-Carlo.

He breaks the long CBSO run of appointing unknown and untested talent.


  • Janice Baker, C.B.S.O. society member says:

    What a wonderful appointment! We have been to several of his concerts in the Symphony hall and the orchestra rises to a new level for him each and every time. You can tell that they just love working with him. We have been secretly hoping they would pick him.

  • Anthony Sayer says:

    Good choice, he’s excellent.

  • Gustavo says:

    But like Migra, he is not a non-migrant.

  • Cornishman says:

    An excellent appointment. He‘s a terrific musician and the orchestra obviously already rate him.

  • Bostin'Symph says:

    Congratulations Kazuki Yamada! And good news for Birmingham too!

  • Americanbass says:

    Great choice! Way better than the other girl

  • Anthony Sayer says:

    Maybe the orchestra is also tired of training MDs.

  • Symphony musician says:

    I’ve played a couple of programmes with him and he was excellent. The performances really lifted off and the audiences felt it too. I’m envious of the CBSO, well done.

  • Donald Hamilton says:

    An account of the appointment is to be found on today ( Wednesday 15 September). It reflects Christopher Morley’s review posted on slippedisc on 1st July.

  • Petros Linardos says:

    Appointing to chief conductor a principal guest conductor sounds like a well informed decision. Can anyone explain why it generally doesn’t happen more often?

  • mel says:

    Excellent choise. He conducted some excellent renditions of Hisato Ozawa’s works over the years, for instance.