What “Mozart in the Jungle” gets right/wrong about classical music

Posted on: February 20, 2015

“Mozart in the Jungle, Amazon’s new comedy series set in the world of a fictional symphony orchestra, has officially been picked up for a second season” in 2016, writes David Ng in Wednesday’s (2/18) Los Angeles Times. “The first season of the satirical show … debuted in January [and] takes ample creative liberty. Here’s a select list of what Mozart gets right and wrong. Right: Professional backbiting: The musicians portrayed in the series are often competitive and ruthless. Youth appeal: [Conductor] Rodrigo is shown replacing the orchestra’s much older music director. An emphasis on youth has become pervasive in the world of major symphonies. ‘Hear the hair’: A marketing campaign emphasizing Rodrigo’s curly hair seems modeled after the L.A. Philharmonic’s promotional campaign for Dudamel. Wrong: Freelance gigs: In the first season, Cynthia, a symphony cellist played by Saffron Burrows, moonlights as a pit musician for a spectacularly awful rock musical on Broadway. It’s doubtful that a cellist of her caliber and pay grade would need the freelance work. Rodrigo’s personal life: Rodrigo seems to have a lot of free time. In the real world, a conductor of his stature would have his days micro-managed by a team of agents, publicists and orchestra personnel.”

Posted February 19, 2015