September 22, 2011

London Philharmonic Orchestra condemned

I posted before on the disruption of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra at the Proms by Palestine solidarity protesters. Well, before the performance, four members of the London Philharmonic Orchestra, together with several other people, signed a letter to the Independent, calling on the BBC to cancel its invitation.  These LPO musicians have now been suspended and this has led to another letter with many signatories, this time to the Daily Telegraph:

Musicians’ Israel protest
SIR – We are shocked to hear of the suspension of four members of the London Philharmonic Orchestra for adding their signatures to a letter calling for the BBC to cancel a concert by the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra.
According to a statement from LPO managers, quoted in the Jewish Chronicle, the action was taken because the musicians included their affiliation to the orchestra with their signatures – a convention that is common practice within the academic world, for example.
One does not have to share the musicians’ support for the campaign for boycotting Israeli institutions to feel grave concern about the bigger issue at stake for artists and others. There is a link being created here between personal conscience and employment, which we must all resist.
A healthy civil society is founded on the ability of all to express non-violent and non-prejudiced opinions, freely and openly, without fear of financial or professional retribution.
The LPO management states that, for it, “music and politics don’t mix” – yet its decision to jeopardise the livelihoods of four talented musicians for expressing their sincerely held views is itself political.
Why should it be so dangerous for artists to speak out on the issue of Israel/Palestine? We are dismayed at the precedent set by this harsh punishment, and we strongly urge the LPO to reconsider its decision.
Howard Brenton
Siobhan Davies 
Mike Leigh 
Sir Geoffrey Bindman QC
Philip Hensher
Miriam Margolyes
Richard Barrett
Caryl Churchill
Siobhan Davies 
John Harteco
A.L. Kennedy
Ken Loach
Simon McBurney
Steve Martland
Annette Moreau
Cornelia Parker 
Prof. Jacqueline Rose
Michael Rosen
Alexei Sayle
Kamila Shamsie
Mark Wallinger
Dame Harriet Walter
Benjamin Zephaniah
Kirsty Alexander 
Yasmin Alibhai-Brown 
Michael Attenborough
Prof. Mona Baker
Derek Ball
Chris Bluemel
Richard Black
Ian Bourn
Prof. Haim Bresheeth
Victoria Brittain
Michael Carlin
Jonathan Chadwick
Prof. Michael Chanan
Sacha Craddock
Andy Cowton
Raymond Deane
Ivor Dembina
Dr Kay Dickinson
Dr Hugh Dunkerley
Tony Dowmunt
Patrick Duval
Gareth Evans
Moris Farhi
Dr Naomi Foyle
Jane Frere
Carol-Anne Grainger
Tony Graham
Lee Hall
Michelle Hanson
Laura Hastings-Smith
Dr Wallace Heimwriter 
John Hegley
Matthew Herbert
Prof. Susan Himmelweit 
Mary Hoffman
Dr Fergus Johnston
Ann Jungman
Reem Kelani
Judith Kazantzis
Conor Kelly
Anthea Kennedy
Aleksander Kolkowski
Dr Adam Kossoff
Malcolm Le Grice
Prof. Yosefa Loshitzky 
Jamie McCarthy
Dr Carole McKenzie 
Ewan McLennan
Jeff McMillan
Helen Legg
China Miaville 
Roger Mitchell
Jenny Morgan
Carol Morley
Alan Morrison
Paul Morrison
Ian Pace
Sam Paechter
Miranda Pennell
Jeremy Peyton Jones
Henry Porter
James Purefoy
Laure Prouvost 
William Raban
A.L. Rees
Lynne Reid Banks
Frances Rifkin
Leon Rosselson
Martin Rowson
Dr Khadiga Safwat
Sukhdev Sandhu
Dominic Saunders
Guy Sherwin
Kevin Smith
Prof. John Smith
Anne Solomon
Ahdaf Soueif
Helen Statman
Michael Stevens
Susannah Stone
Trevor Stuart
Ingrid Swenson
Alia Syed
Jennet Thomas
Miranda Tufnell
Prof. David Turner 
Francesca Viceconti
Michelene Wandor
David Ward
Samuel West
Ian Wiblin
Andrew Wilson
Eliza Wyatt
Robin Yassin-Kassab
Zoë Wanamaker
Dr Paul Goodey
Professor John Miller
Anna Clarke
Big of the Telegraph to publish it really given that it's something of an inhouse rag for zionism in the UK. Mind you there are some big names among the signatories and even Norm of Normblog is a little anxious about what the LPO has done.

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