I don't often write about the arts, but an announcement this week is cause for real excitement -- not only because of the entertainment it will provide to the audiences lucky enough to see it, but because of the way it will transform those who perform.
What is essential is to allow yourself the opportunity of a really strong visceral experience and response to the musicians and the sheer sound of their music. You should ask the box office to recommend seats with the best acoustics and sight lines to allow just that.
In the mid-1980s, after a long dinner party at the Leonard Bernstein residence in Manhattan, I went to the back of the apartment where Bernstein had his studio to tell him I was leaving. He was sitting behind his desk looking at a score of his Chichester Psalms.
On a warm summer weekend last August, something happened in Cincinnati that you would have to call a remarkable accomplishment; in complete defiance of anything you would ever realistically expect, thirty-five thousand people went to see the Symphony.
I caught up with San Fermin's leader Ellis Ludwig-Leone as he was driving north from Los Angeles to San Francisco to talk first tours, the goofy heroics of Victorian romance novels and embracing a stylistic wildness.
Some musical pieces, some moments, are part of us forever. That is why we started the All-Star Orchestra, a made-for-television ensemble with some of the greatest classical orchestral musicians from 30 orchestras across the United States.
On August 25, the Lucerne Festival in Switzerland celebrates its 75th anniversary with a free, all-day music marathon replete with concerts, films and plenty of fanfare. Few cities offer more beautiful settings for listening to music.
Lyon is the city that I have called my second home for the past two years. Being music director with two orchestras requires a very good set of plans and an even better understanding of the airlines. It also means that I must balance my roles in both Detroit and France.
The next time orchestras are taken to task for being too European, too Caucasian, and too male-dominated, one might reference the new and growing generation of music directors who bring an inclusive sensibility and dimension to artistic leadership.
Yannick Nézet-Séguinmost most appealing trait is the keen aggression he has, tempered by superb restraint. Add to that his youthful enthusiasm and openness, his will to succeed and the friendly and positive mood he inspires in the orchestra members, and you've got a winner.
The First Symphony is probably one of the most often performed works of Mahler since it doesn't take two hours or involve 1000 musicians. But Mariss Jansons and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra. There are two words I always say about them: "Oh wow."
Who were these people anyway, who shared my passion for music as well as strong feelings about democracy? What were they thinking when they burst into applause? Then I wondered what Michael's simple two-word theme would mean for the music I was about to hear.
So much great art is dependent on the need for ensemble. The great orchestras and dance companies are great not simply because of the agglomeration of talented artists but also because of the amount of time these artists have worked together to create an aesthetic.
I do hope we can bring together managers, musicians and board members from orchestras large and small and begin a coherent, comprehensive, solution-focused discussion on how we are going to maintain and build this vital sector of the arts ecology