Italian maestro Daniele Gatti will succeed Mariss Jansons in 2016, but not everyone’s happy.

Daniele Gatti has been announced as the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra’s new Chief Conductor. As of 2016, the Italian will become only the 125-year-old orchestra’s seventh maestro, in a line that includes Willem Mengelberg, Bernard Haitink, Riccardo Chailly, and Mariss Jansons.

“I am deeply honoured to receive this invitation from one of the greatest and oldest orchestras in the world,” said Gatti on his appointement. “I will do my very best to deserve it and to serve the music with the support of the musicians and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra family.”

Not everyone is delighted however. Chit chat on the popular Slipped Disc website reveals deeply divided opinions – more than half of them negative. “His interpretations and tempi have been dreadful and horrible! I recall with horror a ghastly slow Mahler 5 with zero detail and dramatic and emotional tension. I will not be watching his concerts, with RCO or otherwise!” says SDCARD. “Truly uninspired choice… Gatti in all his years has never gotten close to grabbing the brass ring. And his repertoire is very limited. A footnote in the Concertgebouw history,” adds OHGLORIOSO.

Others are more positive however: “This is excellent news for Amsterdam. Gatti is a real maestro, both in symphonic repertoire as in opera. Well done, Jan Raes c.s., very well done,” writes Maarten de Gier. Benny points out that the RCO “has a very democratic system in which the orchestra gets to decide mostly any big decision. So apparently there was a big support for appointing Mr. Gatti. If the musicians believe in it I’m sure it’s going to be a great combination!”

Gatti has been a frequent guest conductor of the Concertgebouw since 2004. Together, they have made several tours abroad and have released a CD featuring works by Berg on the Orchestra’s own label, RCO Live. In their most recent performance in June, they performed Verdi’s Falstaff to public and critical acclaim at the Dutch National Opera.

“The musicians and the management of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra look forward to a long and inspiring collaboration with the renowned conductor Daniele Gatti,” said Managing Director Jan Raes. “It is with great conviction that the orchestra has chosen a partnership with a conductor embodying such passion, dedication and experience. This was readily apparent from the keen involvement of the orchestra members in the rigorous selection process.”

Gatti suceeds Mariss Jansons, who in April of this year relinquished his title due to ongoing health problems. After holding his position since 2002, Jansons will lead the RCO for the last time on March 20, 2015. The incoming Chief’s next performance with the orchestra will be in Mahler’s Sixth Symphony from November 27-30.

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