Review: Boston Symphony podium debut for Roderick Cox and solo spotlight for Principal Clarinet William Hudgins

Posted on: November 16, 2021

“It’s always an exciting time at Symphony Hall when a conductor makes their first outing with the Boston Symphony Orchestra,” writes A.Z. Madonna in Saturday’s (11/13) Boston Globe. “The same can be said … when the evening’s star soloist comes from inside the house…. Thursday evening featured both at once, as American conductor Roderick Cox … stepped on stage alongside the BSO’s veteran principal clarinetist, William Hudgins, [for] Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto in A major.… So much of the classical music industry relies on the assumption that star soloists and conductors can hop on a plane without a thought, and that the listeners who love them will travel to hear them. Cox, who was based in Berlin, took this gig in the wake of COVID-19-related visa trouble for Dutch conductor Ton Koopman…. Might the general environmental impact be lessened if a few more special guests per season could take the T (or more likely, Amtrak) to Symphony Hall? If Hudgins’s showing on Thursday was any indication, such a change would not be at the sacrifice of quality. Hudgins’s performance was technically pristine, temperate in expression but never monochromatic…. In … Mendelssohn’s third symphony … Cox showed his finesse.”