Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos

Spanish conductor Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos (*1933) has died today in Pamplona. Last week he had announced his immediate retirement and stepped from his position as chief conductor of the Danish National Symphony. After serious health problems and many cancellations in recent months, the 80-year-old conductor released a statement saying, “After meeting with my doctors I have come to the following conclusion: I have to recognize publicly that I have cancer and that in this state of health and with deep sorrow I am not able to conduct at my standards and the moment to quit professional matters has come.” The cancer was fatal!

Born in Burgos, Spain in 1933, Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos studied violin, piano, music theory and composition at the conservatories in Bilbao and Madrid, and conducting at Munich’s Hochschule für Musik, where he graduated summa cum laude and was awarded the Richard Strauss Prize. In the last part of his long career, he was Chief Conductor and Artistic Director of the Dresden Philharmonic from 2004-2011, and in the 2012-13 season he began his post as Chief Conductor of the Danish National Orchestra.

Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos has recorded extensively for EMI, Decca, Deutsche Grammophon, Spanish Columbia, and Orfeo.

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