29 Facts About Bernard Haitink


Bernard Johan Herman Haitink was a Dutch conductor and violinist.


Bernard Haitink was the principal conductor of several international orchestras, beginning with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in 1961.


Bernard Haitink moved to London, as principal conductor of the London Philharmonic Orchestra from 1967 to 1979, music director at Glyndebourne Opera from 1978 to 1988 and of the Royal Opera House from 1987 to 2002, when he became principal conductor of the Staatskapelle Dresden.


Bernard Haitink conducted 90 concerts at The Proms in London, the last on 3 September 2019 with the Vienna Philharmonic.


Bernard Haitink's awards include Grammy Awards and the 2015 Gramophone Award for his lifetime achievements.


Bernard Haitink studied the violin and conducting, with Felix Hupka, who conducted the school's orchestra, at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam.


Bernard Haitink then played the violin in orchestras before taking courses in conducting under Ferdinand Leitner in 1954 and 1955.


Bernard Haitink conducted his first concert on 19 July 1954 with the Netherlands Radio Union Orchestra.


Bernard Haitink became second conductor of the orchestra in 1955 and chief conductor in 1957.


Bernard Haitink's conducting debut with the Concertgebouw Orchestra was on 7 November 1956, substituting for Carlo Maria Giulini.


Bernard Haitink became principal conductor in 1961, sharing that position with Eugen Jochum until 1963, when Haitink became sole principal conductor.


The financial situation was eventually settled, and Bernard Haitink remained chief conductor until 1988.


In December 2012, following his advocacy for the RFO in the wake of proposed budget cuts to the orchestra and Dutch music in general, Bernard Haitink accepted the title of patron of the RFO.


In March 2014, Bernard Haitink told the Dutch newspaper Het Parool that he wished to renounce the title of RCO conductor laureate and to no longer guest-conduct the orchestra in protest of the orchestra's administrative management.


Bernard Haitink was principal conductor of the London Philharmonic Orchestra from 1967 to 1979.


Bernard Haitink was music director at Glyndebourne Opera in England from 1978 to 1988.


Bernard Haitink was music director of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, from 1987 to 2002, where his musicianship was praised, though he received criticism for his degree of attachment to the organisation as a whole.


From 2002 to 2004, Bernard Haitink was chief conductor of the Staatskapelle Dresden.


Bernard Haitink was principal guest conductor of the Boston Symphony Orchestra from 1995 to 2004, when he took on the new title of conductor emeritus.


Bernard Haitink had declined the CSO's offer to be music director, citing his age.


In 2004, Bernard Haitink said he would no longer conduct opera, but he made exceptions in 2007, directing three performances of Parsifal in Zurich in March and April and five of Debussy's Pelleas et Melisande in Paris in June.


Bernard Haitink led master classes for young conductors in Lucerne for several years.


In June 2019, Bernard Haitink said in an interview with the Dutch daily De Volkskrant that his final concert as conductor was to be in September 2019, formalising his previously announced sabbatical into retirement.


Bernard Haitink had five children from his first marriage to Marjolein Snijder.


Bernard Haitink married his fourth wife, Patricia, a barrister and former viola player in the orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, in 1994.


Bernard Haitink died on 21 October 2021, aged 92, at his home in London.


Bernard Haitink recorded with several orchestras, including the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra and Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra.


Bernard Haitink focused on classical symphonies and other orchestral works, conducting cycles of the complete symphonies by Beethoven, Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Bruckner, Mahler, Vaughan Williams and Shostakovich.


Bernard Haitink recorded the complete five piano concertos of Beethoven and the two piano concertos by Brahms with Claudio Arrau.