Going It Alone

Top conductor goes it alone after record label pulls plug

Donations from wealthy backers help pay for recordings of Bach cantatas
Charlotte Higgins, arts correspondent
Monday January 10, 2005
The conductor Sir John Eliot Gardiner — for 20 years one of the most famous names contracted to the recording company Deutsche Grammophon — has launched his own CD label, after recovering from the blow of the abrupt severance of his contract with DG.
Sir John faced a crisis when the company pulled the plug just as he was planning the gargantuan project of touring with and recording live the complete Bach cantatas throughout the year 2000, which would have resulted in over 50 CDs.
“The project was a central plank of my recording contract with them,” he said. “We were left stranded.”
Sir John’s move provides further proof of the massive contraction in output by the giant classical labels.
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