• Germany edition
 
Simon Rattle to quit Berlin Philharmonic
Photo: DPA

Simon Rattle to quit Berlin Philharmonic

Published: 10 Jan 2013 17:04 GMT+01:00
Updated: 10 Jan 2013 17:04 GMT+01:00

The 57-year-old maestro said he will have been with the orchestra in the German capital for 16 years when he bows out, following 18 years in the same position in the central English city of Birmingham.

"As a Liverpool boy, it is impossible not to think of the Beatles question, 'Will you still need me.., when Im 64?' and I am sure that then it will be time for somebody else to take on the magnificent challenge that is the Berliner Philharmoniker," he said in a statement released by the orchestra.

Rattle acknowledged that it was "not an easy decision" and said he looked forward to another five years at the helm in Berlin.

"I love this orchestra and therefore wanted to tell them my decision as early as possible," he said. "I deeply hope that this will give them enough time to start new plans."

It was not immediately clear who would replace Rattle but veterans such as Israeli Argentine-born conductor Daniel Barenboim and Christian Thielemann of the state orchestra in Dresden were seen as possibilities or, in keeping with Berlin's maverick image, a young break-out talent.

Rattle has been quoted as describing his relationship with the orchestra's musicians as at times "turbulent" but he is extremely popular with Berlin's passionate music lovers and his concerts are routinely sold out.

He arrived in Berlin from Birmingham in 2002 and succeeded the Italian Claudio Abbado.

The philharmonic's general manager, Martin Hoffmann, called Rattle's planned departure "very sad news" for Berlin.

"With his outstanding musicality and creativity he has filled new listeners with enthusiasm for the orchestra every day and has shaped the national and international perception of the Berliner Philharmoniker as a vital cultural ambassador for Berlin," he said.

Philharmonic chairmen Peter Riegelbauer and Stefan Dohr said they regretted the orchestra would no longer be under Rattle's baton after 2018.

"We look forward to many exciting projects which are already in the planning stage," they said in a joint statement.

AFP/mry

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

17:48 January 10, 2013 by Englishted
He was great in Birmingham and was the same in Berlin ,nobody can complain he did his job until the end of his contract.
22:38 January 10, 2013 by wood artist
He and the orchestra have brought Berlin and the world wonderful music time and again. He certainly will be missed, but at least we got some warning. Next trip another stop at the Philharmonie is on the schedule. It's too great to miss in person.

wa
Today's headlines
Siemens lands €650m Norway wind power deal
Photo: DPA

Siemens lands €650m Norway wind power deal

German engineering giant Siemens has won a contract worth 650 million euros to supply wind turbines to Norwegian power groups Statoil and Statkraft, the company said Thursday. READ  

False teeth of the dead: finders keepers?
Coffins awaiting incineration in a crematorium. Photo: DPA

False teeth of the dead: finders keepers?

An Erfurt court has decided not to force a 56-year old man to pay damages for more than 31 kilos of gold teeth taken from the crematorium in Hamburg where he worked between 2003 and 2011. READ  

BVB seeks cash to match Bayern
Photo: DPA

BVB seeks cash to match Bayern

Borussia Dortmund announced its plan to raise €114.4 million on Thursday in an effort to compete with Bundesliga rival Bayern Munich. READ  

Merkel tops Putin hot-line call queue
Call me maybe: The Berlin-Moscow hot-line has been busy. Photo: DPA

Merkel tops Putin hot-line call queue

"If there's somethin' strange in your neighbourhood; Who ya gonna call?" If you're Vladimir Putin, growing ever more isolated among his G8 peers, it's Angela Merkel, say the Kremlin hot-line stats. READ  

More Germans seek assisted dying abroad
A Belgian "suicide kit" including the commonly-used drug sodium pentothal. Photo: DPA

More Germans seek assisted dying abroad

A study revealed today that more people traveled to Switzerland to undergo assisted dying from Germany than from any other country in 2012. READ  

80,000 trainee jobs empty as Germans opt for uni
Photo: DPA

80,000 trainee jobs empty as Germans opt for uni

More young people are choosing university degrees over vocational training, leaving firms scrambling to find qualified new hires. READ  

Doctor arrested over medical test 'rape' photos
The Bamberg Clinic, where alleged abuse was reported. Photo: DPA

Doctor arrested over medical test 'rape' photos

Police in Bavaria have arrested a 48-year-old doctor for allegedly drugging and raping medical test volunteers, media reported Thursday. READ  

German of the Week
Nuts and bolts of being a piercing king
Rolf Buchholz, world's most pierced man. Photo: Caro von D Photografie

Nuts and bolts of being a piercing king

The world's most-pierced man, Rolf Buchholz, was just deported from Dubai, for fear of 'black magic', he says. But as shocking as many people find his body modifications, it is a genuine passion, our German of the Week explains. And who knows, he may just enchant you yet. READ  

Amazon 'should not endanger diversity'
State minister for culture and media Monika Grütters. Photo: DPA

Amazon 'should not endanger diversity'

A German minister on Wednesday threw her weight behind the authors battling US online retail giant Amazon over its alleged strong-arm negotiating tactics with publishers. READ  

Opposition calls for arms export debate
Photo: DPA

Opposition calls for arms export debate

Green Party leader Katrin Göring-Eckhardt is calling for a special session of parliament following Wednesday's announcement that Germany will break its rules and deliver weapons to an active conflict zone. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Photo: DPA
Culture
Sprechen Sie Deutsch? 10 reasons why you should.
Photo: DPA
Society
A German journalist shares the story of his US arrest in Ferguson
Photo: DPA
National
Berlin's senate puts the brakes on Über
Photo: DPA
Gallery
The mysteries of Berlin's abandoned theme park
Photo: DPA
Culture
How I deal with my German Hausmeister
Photo: Ingrid Eulenfan/flickr
Gallery
Nine German treats you'll want to eat right now (and one you won't)
Photo: DPA
Society
Who's getting German citizenship?
Photo: DPA
Culture
How World War I changed Germany forever
Photo: APA/DPA
Gallery
The 12 best words in Austrian German
Photo: DPA
Society
'Look at those German shanty towns!'
Photo: Europeana.de 1914 - 1918
Gallery
A German soldier's life behind WWI lines
Education
Raising the bar for law & business in Germany
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
Photo: DPA
Features
The Local List Archive - Your guide to all things German
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,365
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd