The silence of the Dutch

The silence of the Dutch

Amid the fury of thousands of musicians at the Concertgebouw’s cancellation of the Jerusalem Quartet, one institution has gone silent.

The Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra (RCO), resident at the hall though independently managed, has uttered not a peep.

None of its conductors, managers or musicians has popped up in solidarity with the colleagues the Concertgebouw has excluded. Why not?

Other Dutch musicians have rushed to condemn the C’bouw, one telling us she has never been so ashamed of a national instituion.

But nothing from the orchestra. Will the RCO stay silent if the hall decides it’s unsafe, for instance, to host the Rotterdam Phil with its Israeli music director? Or the Hamburg GMD? Or any number of innocent musicians of varied nationalities who happen to fall foul of a street mob?

The RCO will be conducted tonight at the Concertgebouw by Semyon Bychkov.

I wonder if he’ll say something from the podium.

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