Germany loses famed classical magazine

Germany loses famed classical magazine


norman lebrecht

September 03, 2023

The long-respected FONO FORUM has gone out of business after more than sevenm decades.

It was Germany’s equivalent to Britain’s Gramophone. The last issue will appear at the end of this year.

The classical record industry is running out of outlets and has only itself to blame.

Here’s what subscribers have been told:

Lieber [ ]

leider müssen wir unsere Zusammenarbeit beenden, da das FONO FORUM eingestellt wird – die Ausgabe 1/2024 wird die letzte sein.

Die offizielle Kündigung unseres Rahmenvertrags wird Ihnen in nächster Zeit per Post zugeschickt. Wir bedauern diesen Schritt außerordentlich, sehen aber keine Möglichkeit, den Titel erfolgreich in die Zukunft zu führen.

Die persönliche Absprache in Bezug auf Themen bzw. eine Beauftragung für die noch anstehenden Ausgaben erfolgt wie gewohnt durch Andreas Kunz. Für Rückfragen formaler Art wenden Sie sich bitte an Martina Herberich.

Bitte geben Sie alle jetzt noch ausstehenden Rezensionen spätestens bis zum 18. September in die Datenbank ein! Nur so erhalten wir einen genauen Überblick darüber, wie viele neue Rezensionen in welcher Länge wir danach für die letzte Ausgabe noch bestellen können.

Für die Zusammenarbeit mit Ihnen bedanken wir uns ausdrücklich und wünschen Ihnen alles, alles Gute.

Herzliche Grüße

Martina Herberich Andreas Kunz
Geschäftsführerin Chefredakteur


  • Carlos Solare says:

    Actually, Fono Forum didn’t quite make “sevenm” (sic!) decades, having been founded in 1956.

    The quoted text is, quite obviously, what contributors – not subscribers – have been told.

    Discouraging news, nevertheless. It may very well be that “the industry … has only itself to blame”, but would you care to offer some possible solutions?

  • Wahlberliner says:

    I don’t think that’s what they told subscribers. That looks more like the message that they sent to reviewers.

  • anon says:

    “The classical record industry is running out of outlets and has only itself to blame.” What happened to these magazines is happening across all physical print media. I don’t think there is anything on the classical side that can be done to make a difference. To the contrary, in the US at least, the demise of classical music journalism needs to be facilitated rather than slowed, lest it does any further damage to classical music institutions in its desperate attempt to fight for survival and “relevance”.

  • Mecky Messer says:

    Now…where is the champagne?

  • pjl says:

    It always amazed me that they had just one magazine at earlier times when France & UK had around 4 such magazines. I always found it rather dull with reviws a bit perfunctory and too much focus on hi-fi. Diapason & Classica still survive, partly by offering interesting & sometime rare reissues as free cds.

  • Tamino says:

    The whole demise of the physical CD music industry is to blame on one person alone. He who thought it’s a good idea to wrap CDs in cellophan. The hardship of finding a way of opening that and getting to the inside, to the desired goods, has driven too many into proto-suicidal states.

  • Zarathusa says:

    Another tragic but inevitable example of respected print-media biting the dust in this contemporary age. Now, lovers of classical music in every age group prefer to get their music-related news and other pertinent info immediately from electronic sources rather than wait for something to appear days or weeks later on paper! This explains why SLIPPEDISC is so damned popular today!!!