On March 1, a group of more than 30 California Lithuanians gathered at the Los Angeles Walt Disney Concert Hall for an evening of Mozart, Stravinsky and Beethoven. They unfurled a Lithuanian flag on the steps in honor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s recently-appointed Assistant Conductor, Lithuanian Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla. The 29-year-old conductor has impressed Los Angeles audiences and music critics since her debut concert in August 2014 at the Hollywood Bowl and continues to do so.
Alexandra Kudukis interviewed the new Maestra for Draugas News, an English-language Lithuanian newspaper.
Reprinted by permission of Draugas News.Read More →
The League of American Orchestras annually sponsors the Bruno Walter Conductor Previews, where six young, gifted conductors work with a professional orchestra for two days of rehearsals and a public concert. The 2013 Bruno Walter Preview was held in Florida with the Jacksonville Symphony. I spoke with the six fellows about the experience, and about their thoughts on the future of the American orchestra.
The six winners were:
Joshua Gersen, Music Director of the New York Youth Symphony and Knight Foundation Conducting Fellow of the New World Symphony
Keitaro Harada, Associate Conductor of the Arizona Opera and Music Director of the Phoenix Youth Symphony
Gavriel Heine, staff conductor of the Mariinsky Theatre (formerly Kirov) and Music Director of Northern Lights Festival Opera (MN)
Vladimir Kulenovic, Associate Conductor of the Utah Symphony | Utah Opera
Sameer Patel, Associate Conductor of the Fort Wayne Philharmonic
Benjamin Rous, Resident Conductor of the Virginia Symphony Orchestra
Michael Korn, an accomplished violinist, is also the music director of two community orchestras in the greater Boston suburbs, the Waltham Symphony and the Sharon Community Chamber Orchestra. This article explores the issue of repertoire selection as a strategy to stimulate steady orchestra membership and audience growth in the community orchestra. “Because community orchestras rely heavily on volunteer musicians, the choice of repertoire becomes an important tool, not only for developing audience but also for attracting and retaining present and potential orchestra members.” Michael includes extensive repertoire lists from both orchestras.
Ann DrinanRead More →
The Taki Concordia Conducting Fellowship, founded in 2002 by Marin Alsop, Music Director of the Baltimore Symphony, offers a unique opportunity to young women conductors to immerse themselves in the art and business of performing classical music under the leadership of Maestra Alsop. Carolyn Kuan, Music Director of the Hartford Symphony, was the first recipient of the fellowship. Recently she invited Alexandra Arrieche to conduct Bizet’s “Carmen Suite” on one of our concerts. I invited Alexandra to meet with me to discuss the fellowship and her career.Read More →
Gustav Meier, eminent conducting teacher and Music Director of the Bridgeport CT and Lansing MI orchestras, has been working on a book for conducting students and established conductors, putting on paper many of the techniques and musical approaches he has taught for many years. The Score, the Orchestra and the Conductor will be published in August, 2009, by Oxford University Press.
According to his publisher, “Meier demystifies the conductor’s craft with explanations and illustrations of what the conductor must know to attain podium success. He provides useful information from the rudimentary to the sophisticated, and offers specific and readily applicable advice for technical and musical matters essential to the conductor’s first rehearsal with the orchestra.” In addition to sharing his conducting expertise, Maestro Meier also presents a multiple, cross-indexed glossary of orchestral instruments in four languages, an illustrated description of string harmonics, and a comprehensive listing of voice categories, their overlaps, dynamic ranges and repertory.
When I approached Maestro Meier at a Bridgeport Symphony rehearsal about letting Polyphonic.org excerpt part of his book on Polyphonic, he graciously agreed. Even more graciously, his publishers are offering registered Polyphonic readers a 20% discount on pre-orders for his book. (Note: The book will not be published until August 2009, but you can pre-order now.) Please register with Polyphonic in order to use this promotion code.Read More →