Concertgebouw half-backs down on banned quartet

Concertgebouw half-backs down on banned quartet

The Concertgebouw management has responded swiftly to protests on

Statement regarding Jerusalem Quartet concerts

With disbelief and anger, many have reacted to our decision not to go ahead with the Jerusalem Quartet’s two concerts this week due to the fact that the safety of visitors, staff and musicians in the building cannot be guaranteed.

Over the past months, our intention has been continuously to ensure these concerts would take place, despite the flood of messages from people and organizations opposing the quartet. What finally made us decide not to go ahead with these concerts after all has everything to do with the security situation in The Concertgebouw. The Concertgebouw itself is responsible for that. With two simultaneous concerts in the Main Hall and Recital Hall, there are 2,500 people in the building. With that, the security situation can quickly become precarious.

Two demonstrations had been announced and several people made calls on social media to demonstrate at The Concertgebouw. Until recently, the demonstrations were peaceful and no reason for us not to allow the concerts to go ahead. However, recent developments in and around the University of Amsterdam made that, after extremely intense discussions, we came to the decision not to allow the concerts to go ahead. We could not guarantee the safety within our building of staff, visitors and musicians. We are very sorry for all visitors and not least for the musicians of the Jerusalem Quartet.

It goes without saying that musicians of all persuasions will remain welcome with us, while we continue to stand by our mission to connect and enrich people with the most beautiful music. In dialogue with the Jerusalem Quartet, it has now been decided that we will look for a new concert date for a concert where safety can be guaranteed.

Simon Reinink
General Manager The Concertgebouw

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