Mester leads final concert as Pasadena Symphony music director

Posted on: May 17, 2010

In Monday’s (5/17) Los Angeles Times, Mark Swed writes, “Completing his 25th season as music director of the Pasadena Symphony with an unusually bittersweet Beethoven Fifth at Pasadena Civic Auditorium on Saturday night, Jorge Mester hammered away with consummate professionalism, with taste and determination but not quite jubilation…. At a rehearsal two nights earlier, he announced to the orchestra that he would no longer continue as music director. Saturday was his last concert. … The Pasadena Symphony Assn. put out a press release Friday stating that it could not reach an agreement with Mester ‘on revised contract terms.’  Mester has declined comment. … Violinist Julie Rogers interrupted a standing ovation to tell the audience she had been selected to speak for the players. Fighting back tears, she called Mester’s departure ‘an insurmountable loss to the orchestra and the community.’ ‘We play not because it’s our job but because it’s you,’ she said. Many members of the Pasadena Symphony are studio musicians who sometimes turn down lucrative dates to have a life in symphonic music.”

Photo courtesy of the Pasadena Symphony Association Photo Archive

Posted May 17, 2010