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Composer cancels Lucerne. His part ‘will be played out from mixing desk’.

This is one of the oddest cancellation announcements we have seen:

Change of Cast

Max Richter has unfortunately had to cancel his appearance in tonight’s concert due to private reasons. The program will remain unchanged, the electronic part of “The Four Seasons recomposed” will be played out from the mixing desk.

Er, excuse me? I’ve just paid a zillion Swiss francs to a ticket to hear someone play a record? Explanation required.

max richter

UPDATE: In the absence of an explanation from the festival, we have heard from Daniel Hope, one of the performers at the concert. He was informed by Max Richter the night before the concert that a member of his immediate family had become seriously ill – understandably, he wanted to be with them.

Daniel adds: There have always been 2 versions of “Vivaldi Recomposed”: the first is for violin, string orchestra, full electronics and keyboards performed by Max Richter; the second is an acoustic version for Violin and Strings only, non-amplified. This second version has enjoyed equal success and we have performed it this summer at the festivals of Aspen, Ravinia, Strasbourg and the Bristol Proms. Given the situation yesterday, it would have been simplest for us to revert to the acoustic version. However, Max did not want to let down the audience in Lucerne any more, and therefore generously sent us his own sound engineer from London yesterday morning. In discussion with the composer, he was able to re-create a portion of Max’s electronics and blend them into our live performance, which in turn was amplified. Naturally, many die-hard Max Richter fans were disappointed not to see and hear him live, but everyone to whom I spoke wishes Max and his family all the very best in this difficult time, as do I and all my colleagues in the Festival Strings Lucerne. The ticket prices for this concert ranged from SFR 30 (£20) to SFR 100 (£69), and all ticket holders could bring one person up to the age of 17 for free. 


max richter2


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  1. It’s only the electronic part. there’ll presumably still be an orchestra and soloist playing live…

  2. Kenneth Griffin says:

    Presunably, Festival Strings Lucerne and Daniel Hope will play their parts onstage, as originally planned, and Max Richter would have joined them onstage to play out the electronic part in this final piece of their programme, but his replacement will play it out from the offstage mixing desk. A zillion Swiss francs seems a little steep, and I can quite understand that anyone paying that would have difficulty in understanding a simple announcement.

  3. I suggest the entire audience cancel their appearance…nice of him to “recompose” Vivaldi, it really needs it-

  4. This is the “Vivaldi recomposed” project recorded on CD (Deutsche Grammophon): Just Vivaldis “Four Seasons” pepped-up and/or soft-rinsed in a mix of synthezizer sounds. For a short introduction go

    There is a lot more on youtube. Its improbable that the presence or absence of Mr. Richter makes much difference. Many Vivaldi lovers would probably rather avoid this. It reminds of the “Rondo Veneziano” of the seventies or of Vanessa Mae. However I think that Vanessa is better.

  5. It is a great great piece, but the electronic part is rather unimportant, so the audience is not missing out much at all in my opinion. I saw the “full” version live, and my reaction was that it could do without the electronics and it would be exactly the same great piece of re-worked Vivaldi.

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