Japan hires Mahler winner

Japan hires Mahler winner


norman lebrecht

May 18, 2022

The Japan Philharmonic has chosen the Singaporean conductor Kahchun Wong as its next music director, starting September 2023.

Wong, 35, won the Gustav Mahler Conducting Competition in 2016 and was a one-term music director at the Nuremberg Symphony, stepping down this summer.


  • Kman says:

    Again, the interested reader is directed to the following (especially the 2:15 mark).

    • Achim Mentzel says:

      He is said to have been Masur’s last protégé. I rather believe that Kurt is rotating in his grave. Especially at 2:15.

  • Santipab says:

    This guy is impressive; I heard him conduct a very solid Mahler 5 with the Thailand Philharmonic just before Covid. Still not an easy piece to pull off, as we heard with MTT and the LSO at the weekend!

  • M McGrath says:

    Dear God. Thank you for the reference to the video and the advice to view 2’15″… He obviously has watched Disney’s “Fantasia” to see how to conduct. And he clearly thinks conducting is some kind of animé, a show to put on, a role to play, while displaying the facial expressions of Alfred E Neumann. Not even in Singapore! But I wonder if he has the depth of insight to tackle Mahler, Ives, Schoenberg…or Johann Strauss for that matter. Oh dear, was that insensitive? Did anyone ever see Kurt Masur conduct Pingju Opera and come out unscathed? If he conducted with toy-soldier salutes in Nuremberg, I’m not surprised he moved on after only a short period.