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Replacing Rattle

On 11 May 2015, one-hundred-and-twenty-three members of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra met in secret to vote for a new chief conductor and artistic director, to replace Simon Rattle in 2018.

Orchestra Board member Peter Riegelbauer stated: 'After an orchestra assembly which lasted eleven hours, we have unfortunately come to no decision. There were positive and lively discussions and several rounds of voting, but unfortunately we were unable to agree on a conductor.'

'We must continue this process and this election. That will have to take place within one year. We are very confident that we will come to a decision then. The process of this election will be continued, and the orchestra assembly will meet regularly, but we will take the time that is necessary. That can last one year.'

The mood during the assembly was described by all participants as very constructive, cooperative and friendly. Meanwhile, whilst journalists and editors waited naively for a result, all afternoon and most of the evening, speculation on social media was rife, with discussion of favourite candidates including Andris Nelsons, Gustavo Dudamel, Riccardo Chailly, Christian Thielemann and Daniel Barenboim. There was even a fake 'tweet', supposedly from a member of the orchestra, announcing a winner, and given publicity by a well-known UK-based magazine which should have known better.

Posted: 16 May 2015

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