Detroit Symphony remembers Anne Parsons with 90-minute tribute concert

Posted on: May 20, 2022

“Shortly before her death in late March after a years-long battle with lung cancer, the longtime leader of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Anne Parsons, told her husband [Donald Dietz], that she’d done her best,” writes Maureen Feighan in Tuesday’s (5/17) Detroit News. “During a public tribute … at Orchestra Hall, … music is how Anne was remembered…. Playing for a crowd of roughly 1,000 people and led by Music Director Jader Bignamini, the DSO performed eight pieces during the 90-minute concert, all of which had significant meaning in some way to Parsons…. [Paying] tribute to Parsons in several video recordings [were] cellist Yo-Yo Ma … and … composer John Williams.… Erik Rönmark … the DSO’s new CEO … said working with Parsons was a ‘life-changing’ experience and he never stopped learning from her…. Tuesday’s program included small, poignant pieces, such as [the Larghetto] from Mozart’s Clarinet Quintet in A minor, and Debussy’s ‘Syrinx’ performed by Sharon Sparrow on flute (Parsons played the flute throughout her life, including at her alma mater, Smith College). It also included … ‘Allegro giocoso’ of Brahms’ Symphony No. 4…. Brahms was Parsons’ favorite composer.”