In Sunday’s (7/15) New York Times, Daniel J. Wakin writes, “Tchaikovsky’s ‘Capriccio Italian’ surged faster and faster as I sat on the stage of Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall amid the ranks of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. Marin Alsop, the music director, was giving no quarter. … A clarinetist, I was one of 104 amateur musicians who had signed up for the Baltimore Symphony’s BSO Academy, a unique weeklong program to give amateurs an education in orchestral life. It was also a good way for the orchestra, at a minimum of $1,750 a head, to bring in desperately needed revenue and bond with the public. The week, late last month, included lectures on musicianship, the science of hearing, practice methods, how to blend and performance anxiety. But mostly we played: in chamber music rehearsals, private lessons, group classes, coaching sessions and run-throughs with Ms. Alsop on the bright Meyerhoff stage. We sat next to the Baltimore players, drank beer with them and sipped from their decades of musical wisdom. … The adult pro-am idea for orchestras is not new but is gaining ground. The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra has been doing it for a decade, and the Minnesota Orchestra, the Richmond Symphony in Virginia and the Utah Symphony are among others that have dabbled.” For an inside look at the Minnesota Orchestra program on SymphonyNOW, click here.
Photo by Tracey Brown
Posted July 16, 2012