Bernard Haitink’s last concert is coming up for release

Bernard Haitink’s last concert is coming up for release


norman lebrecht

October 05, 2021

The conductor announced his retirement on June 19, 2019 after a 65-year career.

Four days earlier in Amsterdam he conducted a Saturday matinee concert of Brickner’s 7th symphony with the Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, which he first led im 1957.

The concert will be released as a Challenge Classics CD this weekend.


  • Eyal Braun says:

    This was his last concert in Amsterdam: His last concert was in Lucerne in September 2019- It also included Bruckner 7th, with the VPO, and also Beethoven 4th concerto with Ax as a soloist

  • phf655 says:

    Bernard Haitink’s last concert was in Lucerne on September 6 2019, at the end of a series of concerts with the Vienna Philharmonic that also included appearances in Salzburg and Royal Albert Hall. The significance of the June concert is that it is a reprise – with the same orchestra – of his first ever appearance as conductor, in 1954. A video is available of the Salzburg concerts, which were in late August. This is another way to say that he is now 92 and I (and many other people, I think) miss him!

  • operacentric says:

    And another opportunity to thank Mr Haitink for so many wonderful concerts over the years. Like a fine wine and so many great conductors, he continued always to improve with age!

  • Concertgebouw79 says:

    When I open the Slippedisc first page and I see the name and an image of Haitink, during one little microsecond I am affraid of a bad news. Glad to know that today it was not the case

  • Gustavo says:

    A pity the Strauss songs with Camilla Tilling aren’t included. She sang so wonderful!

  • Jack says:

    Karajan’s last recorded concert was also the Bruckner 7th. Coincidence?

  • Bigfoot says:

    I was lucky enough to hear him live three times, all with the Chicago Symphony during deliberately timed visits to that city: Mahler 3, Bruckner 8, Mahler 9. Magnificent doesn’t begin to describe those evenings.

  • JohnG says:

    I had this last week. Beautifully played and recorded, with nothing at all spuriously valedictory about it – typically Haitink.

  • Chris Ponto says:

    Colin Davis’s last concert was released by LSO Live (the Berlioz Messe de Morts) but I think it was clear from his schedule that nobody expected it to have been his final concert.

  • Una says:

    Last concert or penultimate ot whatever, one of the last works he conducted, and lovely to have it with one of finest of orchestras who play Bruckner so well.

  • By my count, this is sixth recording by Haitink of Bruckner 7.

    1) Concertgebouw (1960’s Philips)
    2) Concertgebouw (1970’s Philips)
    3) Chicago Symphony (2007)
    4) Berlin Philharmonic (2019 / Vinyl only – and spectacular)
    5) This one
    6) Viena Philharmonic – final concert in Lucerne (2019)

    Have I missed any others? I have them all except this one and the Chicago.

  • Gustavo says:

    What was Lorin Maazel’s last concert and when will it be released?

  • Corno di Caccia says:

    The final Zurich concert with the Vienna Phil. and Emmanuel Ax is on DVD. I’ve got it and it is a wonderfully moving performance of Bruckner 7.

  • poyu says:

    I had the fortune to listen to the final “tour” with Wiener Phil in BBC proms. Truly amazing. You can say that‘s because everyone was aware of his retirement then so the atmosphere was unique, but nevertheless it‘s one of the most memorable concerts for me.
    Several years before that, he did Bruckner 9th with Concertgebouw in Barbican, incredible ensemble. After that he broke up with RCO, he did it again with LSO and Wiener Phil in London. Despite still good, it‘s different sound, and you know those teams are not “his orchestra”, they were obviously “cooperating” with him. Nothing wrong with that, just it was a pity we couldn‘t hear that kind of glove-fit-hand level of conductor-orchestra combination in his late career.

    • Mathias Broucek says:

      I was at that RCO / Barbican concert. Just outstanding. Was it Schiff in a Mozart concerto before the interval?

  • Frank says:

    I wish there would be a release of his Brahms symphonies with the Chamber O of Europe, concerts from about ten, fifteen years ago. Those were marvellous, and much better than the somewhat wan Brahms recordings with the LSO.