Jaap Van Zweden cancels Hong Kong for the rest of 2021

Jaap Van Zweden cancels Hong Kong for the rest of 2021


norman lebrecht

October 20, 2021

The Dutch conductor has been refused permission to reenter Hong Kong without serving 21 days quarantine.

He has told the Hong Kong Philharmonic, where he is music director, that they won’t see him again this year.

The actress Nicole Kidman recently received a Hong Kong quarantine waiver. Perhaps she can conduct?

Report in one of the last free newspapers here.

UPDATE: His first three concerts are being taken over by Wilson Ng, jumping in from South Korea.


  • John Borstlap says:

    It’s over-anxious, since v Zweden is imune, he has had a covid infection.

  • Nick says:

    Good on them for keeping their quarantine rules.
    Btw, calling the SCMP ‘one of the last free newspapers’ is hilarious. All they ever report has to be pre-approved by their western masters. Just your usual, pro-western ‘China bad/we absolutely loved being colonized by the British’ HK rag.

    • Aleph says:

      No newspaper is truly free in this China’s Special Administrative Region that is Hong Kong.

      If it is still publishing, it means Beijing approves, and if Beijing approves, well, the fact speaks for itself, doesn’t it?

      Oh, on Van Zweden, of course it’s ridiculous, everytime he flies in to conduct for a week, he has to arrive 3 weeks earlier to be isolated.

      Good for promoting local talent, bad for attracting international talent, but as Hong Kongers are fleeing in droves to their former coloniser (oh, the shame), soon no local talent left either.

    • John Borstlap says:

      Silly comment. Better read information about HK.

    • PGVienna says:

      Western master? The SCMP is owned by the CCP .

  • Cuckly Cuckington says:

    Good on him for flipping the bird (of my wife) to their quarantine rules. The world needs more big strong men like Jaap to flout society’s silly conventions.

  • Barry Guerrero says:

    Oh, I see. Now that J. van Zweden has tickled the anti-vaxers, anti-quarantine, anti-socialist and anti-‘woke’ people that populate these pages, he’s now a good guy. Before that, he wasn’t good enough for New York. Frankly, you’re a very strange crowd.

    • PGVienna says:

      He is right to refuse the stupid policies of the HK puppet government.

      • John Borstlap says:

        That is not the reason at all why v Zweden doesn’t come to HK. He has a schedule with appointments he does not want to loose. It can be assumed that HK was initially planned according to what were the measures at the time. When these quarantaine rules are reinstated, HK would be impossible to get to without breaking various other engagements. So, he simply had no choice but to cancel HK, which is a great shame. I’m sure he will regret it much, since it is his orchestra he has put immense efforts into over the years.

  • PGVienna says:

    No newspaper is free any more in HK. The SCMP is the property of a communist party member and is therefore à Beijing mouthpiece. The three weeks quarantine is deeply stupid for vaccinated and tested visitors. Of course Van Zweden is right. He is not alone, no more international businessmen have visited HK for almost 2 years .