25th October 2021

Bernard Haitink Tribute

Last Friday the world mourned the loss of Maestro Bernard Haitink with whom Semyon Bychkov has warm memories of his encounters. Here are a few lines he wrote about the great Dutch conductor:

“With the departure of Bernard Haitink we lost Haitink the artist and Haitink the man which was one and the same. One year ago he wrote to me:

‘’My own empty days since I stopped conducting seem to fill up surprisingly easily, there is always something to read or hear. I am indulging my passion for Beethoven quartets at the moment, the scores of the late ones seem as complicated as Mahler 7 to me sometimes. The more I look at these things, the more I realise that I don’t know anything.”

Now that he can finally ask Beethoven about the meaning of his late quartets, we are left with the memory of this man’s humility and the never ending search for truth.”