Word has just reached us that both the principal trombone and one of the seconds have quit the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra in the past week.
The principal, Ian Bousefield, is the first British player to be recruited by Vienna. A member of Claudio Abbado’s crack team at the London Symhony Orchestra – this was before crack had an alternative meaning – I remember how pleased and proud Ian sounded when he told me the Viennese had head-hunted him 20 years ago. Now, he’s off, disillusioned with the job.
‘The fact of the matter is that I simply have not had a life now for many years,’ he writes, read the full reasons on his blog. On of his plans is to spend more time teaching in Switzerland.
Second trombone Jeremy Wilson, is an American who won an audition in 2007. He is going back to teach college in Nashville, Tennessee. He cites touring pressures as the main reason to quit. ‘At the end of this season, we will have lived in Vienna for about 260 weeks; I have spent 48 of those weeks away from my wife and son.’
That leaves two big gaps at the back which the orchestra – and the state opera – will need to fill pretty darned quick. Expect an audition announcement soon. Women, as usual, need not apply. Not if they expect a fair hearing, that is.