FEBRUARY 2019Read more
Well, that didn’t take long.
After a lovely New Year’s Eve concert in St. Louis with music, fun and friends, Cindy and I got home around 10:30. I had written most of last month’s web piece and sent it off to post. It never dawned on me that there might just be something cringeworthy to start off 2019.
I have never been one to do much to celebrate the arrival of the next twelve months. It was sort of exciting the first time my parents let me stay up to watch the ball drop in Times Square, but I was in Los Angeles, so I actually saw it at 9:00 in the evening. In 1968, I did venture down Broadway, but not to get into the crowd gathered to hoot and holler. Instead I went to the theater with the largest screen to view 2001: A Space Odyssey. Some years I led concerts in various parts of the world, but mostly I stayed in, once in a while tuning in to watch the last moments of the proceedings.
American Panorama, a DSO Winter Music Festival, February 5-26Read more
January 10, 2019
The DSO reprises its annual Winter Music Festival tradition for a sixth installment, this year celebrating the symphonic repertoire and wide-ranging musical spirit of the United States. American Panorama, a three-week festival from February 5 to 26, includes more than two dozen concerts and events.
JANUARY 2019Read more
Although it was a good year for a lot of things, many of us were pleased to get rid of 2018. The final month started off with as much, maybe even more, turmoil than usual. Following our adventure in Morocco, Cindy and I headed for the final conducting gig of the year, this one in Paris. But our arrival was anything but calm.
A bit later in the week, I wrote a short piece and thought it might be published in a major newspaper. I was told that the subject really wasn’t being covered in enough depth to warrant an editorial comment from me, so I will now share it with all of you.
DECEMBER 2018Read more
So much packed into one month: a return to Lyon, a German tour, a birthday celebration and an exotic holiday!
Although the ONL had opened its season several weeks earlier, I had the privilege of taking the orchestra on a six-concert tour of Germany. That followed a set of performances in the Auditorium as preparatory sessions for the trip. It was clear that we would perform the repertoire that would be played over the course of the tour.
With the title “National” in its name, there is an implication that the ONL will represent the country and its contributions to musical history. However, one thing that the French really never did was produce a wide body of works that are called symphonies. Of course, there are isolated exceptions, but overall, there are not that many big works in the tradition of Beethoven, Brahms, et al.
The Orchestre National de Lyon Triumphs in Berlin and BeyondRead more
November 9, 2018
The Orchestra National de Lyon’s concerts in Berlin and Leipzig were met with standing ovations from audiences and rave reviews from critics. Under the baton of Directeur Musical Honoraire Leonard Slatkin, the orchestra is touring Germany through November 13, performing in a total of six cities.
Orchestre National de Lyon Embarks on Tour of GermanyRead more
November 5, 2018
Led by Directeur Musical Honoraire Leonard Slatkin, the Orchestre National de Lyon is on tour in Germany, presenting six concerts over the course of nine days. The tour begins with a performance at the Berlin Philharmonie, marking the ensemble’s first time playing there, and ends with a concert in Munich.
NOVEMBER 2018Read more
Before our monthly update, it seems like time to think about the world in which we live. I am writing this a few hours before heading to JFK for my six-week European tour. October will seem like a distant memory in a few days, but how far can we go to be away from the hatred and enmity that exists on this horrifically troubled earth?
Predictions of the impending catastrophe of global warming started fueling the fire of divisive rhetoric and indecision this past month. Then there was the ugly spectacle of seeing victims being torn down because they told their stories of harassment and attack. The #MeToo movement appeared to be gaining momentum, but this moved to the back burner quickly.
Leonard Slatkin Conducts World Premiere Commemorating WWI ArmisticeRead more
October 16, 2018
On Sunday, October 21 at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., Leonard Slatkin will conduct the world premiere of Alexander Kastalsky’s epic 1917 work, Memory Eternal to the Fallen Heroes. The Kastalsky Requiem Project brings together the Clarion Choir, Kansas City Chorale, Chamber Choir of St. Tikhon’s Monastery, and Cathedral Choral Society to revive this piece.
OCTOBER 2018Read more
It feels like forever since I wrote a regular monthly piece for my website, but now that I am conducting again, we can get back to normality.
There was just a bit of trepidation as I approached the podium in Indianapolis to conduct the finals of their violin competition. Almost four months had passed since I last picked up a baton and waved my arms. This was certainly the longest period I had gone without using this set of physical skills. Would there be any strain on my musculature? Did I have adequate strength to get through the rehearsals and concerts? Would the tuxedo still fit after I had lost twenty-five pounds?
DSO and Leonard Slatkin Return to Orchestra Hall for Opening Weekend, Oct. 5-7Read more
September 28, 2018
The Detroit Symphony Orchestra will kick off the 2018-19 Classical Series with concerts welcoming back Music Director Laureate Leonard Slatkin and featuring special guest violinist Gil Shaham. On the program is American composer Donald Erb’s The Seventh Trumpet, Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto No. 1 (with Shaham as featured soloist), and Elgar’s “Enigma” Variations.