19. October 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Conductors, Ramble, Videos

Kenneth Woods has brought folks to task for continually reporting about the “dissing” of female composers. He suggests, instead, that journalists “write a feature article profiling at least 20 to 30 women conductors working today.”

A very good thing to do!

(But I would also say that while I think he has an excellent idea, it’s still quite important to report on the negative issues women continue to deal with. I think reporting the Good Stuff is great, but it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t acknowledge the Bad.)

I am happy to say that conductor Barbara Day Turner, of San Jose Chamber Orchestra, is featuring a different female composer each day on the San Jose Chamber Orchestra Facebook page. What a wonderful idea!

I think I’ll feature women conductors here when I find something I can share. This is a YouTube video and I really hope it’s okay to share it. I’m getting even more leery of YouTube videos: they suggested one of my goofy little videos wasn’t legal, and yet I see so much there that I question. Funny how that goes.

This is an interview with Susanna Mälkki, put up by the Boston Symphony Orchestra.

19. August 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Conductors, Read Online

It has taken just 118 years for a woman to follow in the footsteps of the renowned conductors Sir Henry Wood, Sir Malcolm Sargent and Sir Colin Davis, performing the likes of Jerusalem and Land of Hope and Glory. “You need a woman every 100 years or so, right?” Alsop says wryly. “But,” she adds seriously, “I was surprised there hadn’t been a woman conducting it before.”

According to Roger Wright, the BBC Proms director and Radio 3’s controller, the reason for this is what he calls “the weight of history”.

RTWT

01. March 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Conductors, News

In July 2011, a successful Mexican musician residing in Germany was abducted by gunmen while on holiday in northern Mexico.
36-year-old Rodolfo Cazares is a Mexican pianist and symphony conductor, leader of the Bremerhaven city orchestra in Germany.

While visiting his parents in northern Mexico, Rodolfo Cazares was sleeping in bed with his wife when masked gunmen burst into the house and shook them awake. Within hours, the gunmen kidnapped 18 members of the same family. The children and the conductor’s wife Ludivine Barbier were released a few days after the crime.

RTWT and if you want to read more there are links below that article.

Truly horrible.

17. May 2011 · Comments Off · Categories: Conductors, Videos

This is a video of a man conducting an orchestra for the first time. It’s a fun watch.

He writes about it here. That article begins:

I can’t keep my eyes off the orchestra’s feet.

With their hands full of flutes, violins, violas, oboes, mallets and trombones, the 60-plus symphony members are left with their feet to keep time.

It’s a tangle of tapping sandals, hiking boots and Converse All-Stars. One woman taps with the front of her red satin flats, a man across the stage uses the heel of his wing-tips. A few in flip-flops tap with just their big toes, and a violinist in the throes of a finale arches her feet like a ballerina.

Well, if they are all tapping they have a nice additional rhythm section there, eh? ;-)

11. March 2011 · Comments Off · Categories: Conductors, Videos

“Ahhh … there’s a skill to this conducting malarky.”

(Warning: I think there’s one f-bomb. And yes, I mean “think” … I can’t hear it clearly. Stupid ears. And there are two s**ts there too. So if your ears hurt from this sort of thing, skip it!)

07. March 2011 · Comments Off · Categories: Conductors

… when he should be giving away oboe reeds.

But what conductor ever gives us oboe reeds, right? (Don’t you think it would be a great idea if they did?)

So here is how the article began:

Stephen P Brown today announced that he will give away closely-held secrets of the music conducting profession to more than 100 radio listeners who may not be regular classical music fans. Why would anyone want to give away secrets for free? “It’s simple,” says Brown, Artistic Director of the Jubilee Orchestra in New York City and now a resident in the Tampa Bay area. “Once people understand that there is much more to music than just the music, they’re going to tell their friends about it. Plus, they can discover how to truly experience live music in ways they may have forgotten or never even experienced before.”

Who knew there were “closely-held secrets”, anyway?

18. February 2011 · Comments Off · Categories: Conductors

Yep. It can happen to anyone. But first Muti and now this:

The Royal Opera House auditorium was cleared last night after 83-year-old conductor Sir Colin Davis suffered a fall as he mounted the podium steps.

Orchestra members rushed to his aid and an ambulance was called when Sir Colin tripped and tumbled, bashing the back of his head, as he prepared to conduct Mozart’s The Magic Flute. The audience saw him lying on the floor, but the paramedics were not needed and he stood and walked from the pit himself.

He drank some water and a message was broadcast throughout the Covent Garden building that he was fine. But it was decided as a precaution that David Syrus, who was on hand and already scheduled to conduct performances of the opera next week, should take over.

At his home in Highbury today, Sir Colin told the Standard: “I’m fine. I have had heart troubles. It’s been a bad year on the whole, but I’m still abreast, so to speak.”

I read it here.

07. January 2011 · Comments Off · Categories: Conductors

This guy has an infectious smile, don’t you think?

Many thanks to Bob Hubbard for a link here.

I know a conductor who has done something like this, and I can tell you it really can work. Some music … it just flows this way! Honest!

And isn’t that just a wonderful way to bring in a new year? I think so! It made me … well … happy!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

29. December 2010 · Comments Off · Categories: Conductors

Canadian conductor Yan­nick Nezet-Seguin, 35, has withdrawn from what were to have been his debut concerts with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, citing “personal reasons.”

RTWT

… does anyone ever back out due to impersonal reasons?

Okay, that was a stupid little joke, I know!

I blogged about this conductor earlier, when he was named music director of the Philadelphia Orchestra.