The Mercury News has an article on the Symphony Silicon Valley and our not having a permanent conductor. It doesn’t really say we should have one, but points out reasons for both having and not having one.

I had been asked if I would go on the record with my thoughts, but had declined. Why? For one thing I think it’s best to be careful with my opinions no matter what; what I say, and especially what gets put in print, can come back to haunt me. (Shoot, I read some my old posts here and realize those could come back to haunt me!), but I also wasn’t certain what the Players’ Committee would recommend regarding this. Too bad … I probably would have gotten this site in the news! Ah well. As I’ve said before, I’m not doing this to become popular. That would be an exercise in futility, don’t you think?!

One thing I will say: It has been very interesting to read reviews of our concerts. So often the conductors that the reviewers like are ones that I can’t follow. Much of the time they seem underwhelmed by those I love. So I wonder … are the reviewers wrong? Am I wrong? Are we all wrong? Is it more subjective than I think? I can say, with certainty, that sometimes a reviewer will say “Conductor X brought out the best in the players” with a conductor we can’t follow. Sometimes they even imply that it’s the best we’ve ever played … or that we played beyond what they believed we were capable. I would suggest that we sounded so good because we had to work so darn hard to keep things together when the conductor was a mess. Some time ago (so don’t go guessing who I’m talking about—besides, I’ll never tell!) a conductor actually ended the work before the final measure. Talk about a challenge for us! The audience and reviewers when absolutely nuts over that conductor. Go figure.