6 years ago

Volume 10 Issue 1 - September 2004

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Nurture your musical

Nurture your musical Sense Sensibility FACULTY r). \ UN'fV'El\SITY OFTIJRONTO 2004-2005 SEASON UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO FACULTY OF MUSIC Gage Averill, Dean I Cameron Walter, Associate Dean Subscription packages are available at a discount for these series: Faculty Artist Series Chamber Music Series Orchestra Series Opera Series Call 416-978-3744 Single Tickets can be purchased at the box office in person or by calling 416-978-3744 Season Brochure Visit for a complete listing of our events or call the box office for a season brochure Box Office 416-978-3744 11 am-5 pm Monday - Friday Visa and MasterCard accepted Edward Johnson Building 80 Queen's Park Toronto ON MSS 2C5 Museum subway stop Behind the old Planetarium Concert Highlights I Scott St.John and Shauna Rolston in Brahms' Double Concerto with U ofT Symphony Orchestra I Operas - Savitri (Holst), Gianni Schicchi (Puccini), Semele (Handel) I Faculty Recitals - Lorna MacDonald (soprano), James Parker (piano), Shauna Rolston (cello), Scott St.John (violin), Nexus (percussion) Brentano String Quartet, St. Lawrence String Quartet, eighth blackbird, Gryphon Trio I U of T MacMillan Singers and Elmer lseler Singers in Mendelssohn's Symphony No. 2 "Lobegesang" I New Music Festival I All-Star Faculty Jazz Band Plays the Montreal Bistro I World Music -Japanese taiko, Chinese traditional, African and North Indian Public Master Classes I Lectures I Kofi Agawu, music theorist I William Aide, pianist I Sir Thomas Allen, baritone I Paul Berliner, ethnomusicologist I Kurt Elling, jazz vocalist I Heinz Holliger, composer/conductor I Andrew Hughes, musicologist I James Kippen, ethnomusicologist I Simon Morrison, musicologist I Kelly-Marie Murphy, composer I Carl Schachter, music theorist

to TSO 2004? Or to put it anoth- being known for certain reperer way, how far ahead of that to ire? How does it work? last performance with the Tokyo in Houston were you already on You work hard to build your this other path? · repertoire at the right pace. I'd have to say I'm a medium to When I first stopped playing, which was May '95 actually (you more slowly than quickly actualwere right about the Houston concert being my last 'with the Tokyo, but it was a special reun- ion, I had slopped well over a year before that), ... in May '95 if you'd asked me, I'd have said that the two pahs had nothing to slow learner. I prefer to learn ly, Lo really come to know the sweep' and detail of gesture. You owe it to an orchestra to offer them a full interpretation. I don't think there's a·shortcut. So in the case of guest conducting if they can't accept something in my I have to admit I'm having do with each other. But the more I conduct lhe more I see them as nearly identical: discovering and uncovering the music, conceptualizing and interpreting are still an appallingly good time the core of the process. I had warning signs [of the focal dystonia in his left hand that ended his career as a violinist}. I knew by the late eighties that something was wrong. By 1993 I knew it was not reversible and was re-engaging with conducting. I'd had a taste of it in my teens, choral conducting mostly, and it was my second study after violin at Juilliard. Von Karajan made me conduct the slow movement of the Brahms 1 in a master class he gave there, Ozawa and Eschenbach were both in the class. It was quite a momem, with him just off my left shoulder. I can say now that it's always been in the back of my mind, a quiet passion, all the way back to my sense of wonderment at age 10,11,12 being conducted by Benjamin Britten. He picked the choir at my school, Downside Prep, for the Decca recordings he was making: Midsummernight's Dream, and the Songs from "Friday Afternoons". We thought we knew the Friday Afternoons, but he utterly transformed them. There were two things about him when he came into the room. One was the aura he had, the other was the confidence he engendered. The list of orchestras you have guested with as a conductor is substantial - Berlin, Houston, Colorado, LA, NDR Hanover, Philadelphia, etc. Do you have much of a say in determining repertoire in those situations? Or are you invited because of repertoire then I will graciously decline the invitation. The fortunate thing is that a lot of people in the orchestral business really do understand the business. They know that their musicians love someone coming in with conviction. I work ahead about two years in my preparation. Right now I am finishing repertoire for the 2005/2006 season. The other side of the same coin: what does guest-conducting not prepare you for in terms of an assignment like this one? What it doesn't prepare you for is all of the other things. But then, all of the things you do as a person prepare you as a person for the things you do. It doesn't matter where you learn the lessons. It could be personal, it could be sport. For me it was immeasurably important to be music director and first violinist of the Amsterdam Sinfonietta, also to be artistic director at Caramoor [Summer Music Festival in New York]. But ultimately it's instinctive, knowing when you're ready. For some people it's at forty, for others not. You have to accept that you're ready for the tough decisions. Like? Like influencing selection of player personnel. You have to take strong positions. As the music director grows into the role, the orch

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