Ann Drinan and I would like to thank all the panelists for their thoughtful and direct observations. We can only hope that some conductors will wander through this corner of cyberspace, read this discussion, take some of it to heart, and make the world a marginally better place - at least for orchestra musicians.
For our last day of discussion, I’d like to post two questions. Panelists can choose to answer one, both, or questions of their own, if they don’t like either.
The first is about what we see in conductors that drives us nuts about how they actually deal with the music. What do most conductors not do well musically? What words of wisdom about the music, if heeded by those with sticks, would lead to consistently better interpretations?
The second question is about us. What can orchestra musicians do to improve the relationship between conductors and orchestras? Is it possible to have a frank discussion with a conductor (through a formal committee process or otherwise) about issues that impact the musicians?