• Most Respected Classical Music Platform
  • #classicalForever

Israel Chamber Orchestra Musicians Protest Dismissal of Music Director

The orchestra management's removal of Ariel Zuckermann has caused an outcry from the musicians, who have launched a petition to reinstate him


The Israel Chamber Orchestra (ICO) has dismissed its music director of eight years, Israeli conductor and flutist Ariel Zuckerman. Opposing the announcement, ICO’s musicians launched a petition, which has over 1,000 signatories to date.

The petition reads:

“We, the musicians of the Israel Chamber Orchestra (ICO), are shocked and saddened by the sudden, incomprehensible decision of our Board and management to terminate the contract of our musical director Ariel Zuckermann. 

“He has brought immense artistic value to the Israel Chamber Orchestra, cultivating partnerships and bringing world class musicians to perform as guest artists with our orchestra. 

“His commitment to excellence and his unwavering passion for music have significantly enriched our musicianship and performances, and inspired us to reach new orchestral heights. Ariel Zuckermann has the full and unanimous support of the ICO musicians. We are unwilling to accept his dismissal!”

While the ensemble’s musicians request for Zuckermann’s return, ICO management states that he was let go due to criticisms of the quality of his work and activities, Israel’s Haaretz news reports

“The music director of the Israel Chamber Orchestra, Ariel Zuckerman, is ending his position,” the management said. “We are grateful to Mr. Zuckerman for a long and fruitful tenure as the director of the orchestra, and we wish him success in his professional career.”

Based in Berlin, Zuckerman began his music career as a flutist, and studied conducting at Stockholm’s Royal Academy of Music and the Munich School of Music with Jorma Panola and Bruno Weil.

In the 2015/16 season, he was appointed music director of ICO. Between 2004 and 2013, he served as music director and chief conductor of the Georgian Chamber Orchestra in Ingolstadt, Germany.

VC Artist violinist Stella Chen recently wrote on her social media channels a statement of support for Zuckermann:

"Dear friends, I was to have played the Brahms concerto with Maestro Ariel Zuckermann and the Israel Chamber Orchestra in March 2024" Chen wrote. "I am deeply saddened to learn of Ariel’s termination and subsequent disagreements between the management and orchestra. Though I don’t have information regarding the terms of dispute, my professional experience and friendship with Ariel has been nothing but wonderful and I will respectfully decline to play this concert with the ICO at this time as my allegiance is with the wishes of the musicians."

Currently, ICO’s management is forming a search committee to recruit a new conductor for the music director role. The successful candidate will work with ICO alongside its CEO Anna Zimin, promote worldwide collaborations, improve its ranking, and help with fundraising.

“We firmly believe [his] contributions to the ICO are immeasurable, and that his absence will create an irreplaceable void,” ICO’s musicians countered. “We stand united in our refusal to accept his termination. We urge the Board and management to resign after taking this irresponsible, damaging decision.

“We kindly request your support in signing our letter and expressing your sentiments in your own words, if you are so willing,” they continued. “Your signature and voice will carry significant weight and send a strong message to the ICO’s Board and management that the artistic community and music lovers like yourself stand in solidarity with us. Together, we can ensure the preservation of artistic excellence and continue to inspire audiences with the power of music.”

upcoming events

march 2024

16marAll Day20Music Teachers National Association National Conference(All Day) The Westin Peachtree Plaza, 210 Peachtree St NW, Atlanta, GA 30303Event Type :conferences & tradeshows Event Tagschamber music,Chamber Music America,Conferences,Music Teachers National Association National ConferenceFOLLOW

17marAll Day21Tokyo Classic Violin Competition(All Day) Tokyo University of the Arts, 12-8 Uenokoen, Taito City, Tokyo 110-8714, JapanEvent Type :competitions Event TagsClassic Violin Olympus International Competition,violin competitionFOLLOW

20marAll Day23American String Teachers Association (ASTA) National Conference(All Day) Kentucky International Convention Center, 221 S 4th St, Louisville, KY 40202Event Type :conferences & tradeshows Event TagsAmerican String Teachers Association,American String Teachers Association National Conference,ASTA,conferenceFOLLOW

april 2024

01aprAll Day05Vienna Classic Violin Competition(All Day) Music and Arts University of the City of Vienna, Johannesgasse 4a 1010 Vienna, AustriaEvent Type :competitions Event TagsClassic Violin Olympus International Competition,violin competitionFOLLOW

23aprAll Day26Lyon International Chamber Music Competition(All Day) Université Lumière Lyon 2, 18 quai Claude Bernard 69365 Lyon, FranceEvent Type :competitions Event Tagschamber music,chamber music competition,Lyon International Chamber Music CompetitionFOLLOW


Get ALL our latest conveniently by EMAIL

Our newsletter is trusted by over 100,000+ industry professionals around the world

We deliver news straight to your inbox and will never share your data.
You'll never miss a beat!

click left click right