….we talk about the foundational structure of Symphony Number One. In particular we talk about attempting to forge a model of what a 21st century chamber orchestra should become: more focused on contemporary music than they currently are. Further, we talk about how a season program is something of a moral document: it says something about your priorities as a conductor. The phrase “a budget is a moral document” is often used in the context of politics. How a person or an organization spends its money speaks to what it cares about. And what is a season program, after all, if not a musical budget? I used Symphony Number One’s September concert with the music of Schoenberg and James Lee III as an example of our programming model:
As stated in the video, this interview was given to help share information about Mr. Meier’s book, The Score, the Orchestra, and the Conductor. It is an invaluable resource to any conductor looking to tackle particularly challenging excerpts or to merely understand the anatomy of the orchestra. In it, he illuminates and puts into print (often for the first time) the oral and even unspoken traditions of the orchestra.
…It is critical that we take care of ourselves and allow ourselves to be pleased with imperfect performances; after all, there is no such thing as a perfect performance! The goal is to strive for perfection, to get as close as we can, and then share the perfectly imperfect result with our fellow-travelers. In so doing, we learn a valuable lesson in self-forgiveness and self-care which is crucial to longevity in the music career…
How do you start a new music ensemble from scratch? I don't pretend to have all the answers but I enjoyed contributing my "piece of the map" to the conversation.
In the summer of 2016, I sat down with Jon Lim to discuss the most controversial word in the English language: failure.