st Louis Symphony Orchestra Concert
Dear Mr. Zander ~
I had the good fortune of attending the March 13th performance by the St. Louis Symphony musicians and those that generously came from around the country to show their support and solidarity. I brought my elderly mother to her first live concert. As a little girl, on Saturday mornings when there were chores to be done, she would put on her beloved 78 recordings of Gershwin, Rachmaninoff, Dvorak, Mozart, Beethoven and Tchaikovsky to make the work more of a pleasure. As she is losing her sight, the music became more important to her and allowed her to wrap herself in their bliss. At the concert she was like a small child full of awe and speechless to describe what she had experienced and said she would never be able to only half listen to the music again because before her, were musicians and a conductor so full of life and passion that the music was transformed into something almost ethereal. She whispered to me that she hopes the music in heaven is at least half as wonderful as what she was experiencing. Your engaging spirit invited us to become part of the music and the spirituality of the moment. Many times I would close my eyes and feel the music gently caressing my face and swirl about my shoulders before settling into my soul. I would lay my hands in my lap with the palms up so the music would tickle my fingertips and imagine the passion of the musicians and their eagerness to share their love of the music with us all. You were the wonderful conduit for the musicians and for the audience, and through you, we communicated and experienced the power of music. I have never been to a performance in which such energy and love washed over everything and everyone it touched. I know the Symphony management wanted the musicians to give a free thank you performance for the public, but their intention was to placate those that didnt understand the lockout to begin with. I attended each of the benefits put on by the musicians during that time to show my support, and the energy and love that permeated each note at those concerts elevated each concert to a level that far exceeded anything I had thus far experienced at Powell Hall. What the management fails to understand, the public and the musicians are the ones that share the common bond of a love for the music and that is what helps to create a great Symphony. Management wants to force their point onto others and doesnt understand how that damages the artistic integrity of the music. If only they could have felt and experienced what we did collectively on March 13th. Many thanks for your generosity in sharing your gifts of time, talent and money with the Symphony and with us. I purchased your book and look forward to experiencing your written wisdom and talents and hope we will be seeing you on the stage of Powell Hall very soon.
P.S. My mother asked in amazement, why dont more conductors attempt to engage the audience in the music in the same manner indeed why not?
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