Mariss Jansons 1943–2019

The London Symphony Orchestra is deeply saddened to hear of the death of conductor Mariss Jansons. 
A statement from David Alberman, Chair of the London Symphony Orchestra
'The London Symphony Orchestra is deeply saddened to hear of the death of conductor Mariss Jansons. Partly as a result of his long struggle with heart disease, we had far too few opportunities to work with him.  He was everything an orchestra needs from a conductor - meticulous when rehearsing detail, and with a crystal-clear stick technique which could convey perfect moments but also long uninterrupted arcs of sound and he was never less than visionary.  In short, like all the greatest conductors, he made us play like the best orchestra we could be - his recording of Mahler’s 6th Symphony with us being a case in point.  Ultimately his untimely death makes our few but precious memories of him even more of a blessing.  Our deepest sympathy goes out not only to his wife and family, but also to our colleagues in the great Bayrischer Rundfunk Symphony Orchestra, who were lucky enough to enjoy a long and illustrious relationship with him.  His music-making, however, will stay with any musician who ever worked with him: Mariss Jansons may no longer be with us, but his wonderful legacy will endure.  For that we give thanks.'
A statement from Sir Simon Rattle, Music Director of the London Symphony Orchestra
'A couple of years ago, a journalist set me an interesting test: I had to say the first sentence that came into my head about six conductors. When the name Mariss Jansons came up, my immediate reply was 'the best of us'.
I feel the same now as I mourn the loss of a friend as well as an intensely admired colleague. At his best (which seemed to be virtually always) he had the capacity to disappear into the music to such an extent that one forgot he was there. This implies no blandness or lack of personality, just a zen-like ability to become the music and allow it to speak. I so often had the feeling 'yes,that's exactly how it should sound' even if the interpretation was unusual. But mostly, it felt like the music was speaking its own truth, unadorned and unadulterated. And of course, he was a complete sweetheart: Magdalena and I had dearly hoped for one more funny, convivial, generous evening with him and his wonderful, ever-watchful wife Irina. Those moments remain in our heart, as does everything else connected with this kind, special man. Adieu Mariss,the best of us...'