Neville Marriner

Remembering Neville Marriner By R.J. Stove

Few conductors are loved. It could be as well, for music’s sake, that most conductors are loathed. Any impressive level of attendance at their obsequies readily calls to mind the witticism—attributed both to George Jessel and to Red Skelton—regarding the crowds at a universally abhorred Hollywood tycoon’s funeral: “Well, it proves what they always say. Give the people what they want, and they’ll come out for it.”

So how do we explain not merely the respect but the sincere affection that greeted the death, earlier this month, of the 92-year-old Neville Marriner (Sir Neville from 1985)? Mere British chauvinism cannot be a factor. After all, the obituary tributes on the radio networks of Paris, Rome, and Berlin (to say nothing of major American cities) appear to have been as kindly as anything broadcast or printed in London.

It cannot have been Marriner’s Guinness World Records achievement in having made more classical recordings—600 or so—than any other conductor, with the sole exception of Herbert von Karajan. No such sense of public bereavement marked Karajan’s 1989 demise. Nor can any particular media panache on Marriner’s part have been operating. He gave no more interviews than any other world-famous podium figure, and far fewer than most.

Despre Claudiu Degeratu
Expert in securitate nationala, internationala, NATO, UE, aparare si studii strategice

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