A majority of Munich city council voted today to appoint Valery Gergiev chief conductor of the Philis from 2015. Since he has already given notice to the LSO that he’s not renewing his contract which ends that year, the deal is done, sealed and delivered. The contract is for five years, to 2020, which rules him out of the running for the Berlin Philharmonic, which falls vacant in 2018.
Here’s the first report, on AFP:
FRANKFURT, Jan 23, 2013 (AFP) – Charismatic Russian maestro Valery
Gergiev will take over as chief conductor of the prestigious Munich
Philharmonic from 2015, Munich’s municipal authorities announced on
Gergiev, 59, will replace Lorin Maazel as the orchestra’s chief when
Maazel’s contract expires in 2015, the city council said in a
The Moscow-born maestro, currently chief conductor of the London
Symphony Orchestra and long-term director of the legendary Mariinsky
Theatre in St. Petersburg, will initially be appointed for a term of
five years until 2020.
“Valery Gergiev is without doubt one of the most important,
influential and inspirational conductors of our time,” said Munich’s
cultural minister Hans-Georg Kueppers.
“His youthful energy and enthusiasm will not only benefit the
orchestra. His ability and charisma will also shape audiences of all
different age groups and Munich’s musical life,” Kueppers said.
The appointment, voted through by a majority by Munich’s city council
on Wednesday, had been decided in consultation with orchestra, which
is one Germany’s top ensembles, he added.
“The Munich Philharmonic is a fantastic orchestra with a great
tradition,” Gergiev was quoted as saying in the statement.
“We know each other very well. I’m happy that we can intensify our
Gergiev is one of the busiest conductors working today. He has headed
the Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg for 20 years and been chief
conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra since 2007.
He is also chief conductor of the World Orchestra for Peace, an
initiative sent up in 1995 by legendary maestro Georg Solti.
The classical music scene has been abuzz with speculation recently
that Gergiev was to take the Munich position after the LSO in London
announced last week that he would not be renewing his contract with
them after the end of 2015.
But the London orchestra insisted that their relationship with
Gergiev remained “excellent” and would continue to be strong even
after his departure.
The Munich Philharmonic is one of Germany’s top orchestras and its
previous chief conductors include the legendary Sergiu Celibidache, US
maestro James Levine and German star conductor Christian Thielemann.