I adore our audience!
Late last year, Simon Sperl (our fabulous new executive director) and I met a few members of our loyal audience at Caribou Coffee on Lake Street in Wayzata. What a treat! As conductor, I see the audience as an entity but rarely get a chance to get to know them individually. After the meeting, I really look forward to the third Monday of each month to get to know more of them.
Here’s a few stories about who we met:
Wendy goes to 80 artistic events a year! She ushers for various groups and attends events of many other groups, including Jungle Theater, SPCO, MN Orch, etc. I am deeply honored to have the WSO included on her list of the concerts she chooses.
Minnetonka Mike came by too. He walked in playing the harmonica! I recognized him right away because he makes it a point to find me at our after-concert receptions. His memory for our concerts and my verbiage is uncanny. I wish I had that kind of recall.
“I sell stuff,” he said. “But I sell it eyeball to eyeball.” Amazon, NOT!
As I write this, I am smiling because of the wonderful dialogue we shared for two hours.
Simon and I feel so fortunate to be part of this organization that celebrates collaboration with community and audience.
Hoping to see you at Caribou on Monday, January 21 from 12:00 noon until 2:00 pm – coffee is on us, no matter how fru-fru it is!
Years ago when I was conducting family concerts for the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, I had the idea to ask Arctic Explorer, Ann Bancroft, to narrate Wolf Tracks by Beintus, a piece similar to Peter and the Wolf except in this one, the wolf protected. I had a 50/50 chance Ann would say yes so I gathered my confidence and made the call. Without any hesitation she said, “Sure.”
Her response was the same when I contacted her last Spring to be our special guest for our November 19th concert.
Currently, her international team of eight women is exploring major rivers of the world through the program, ACCESS WATER that seeks to create awareness of our collective need to protect and preserve our water.
She is my hero not only because of her physical strength and mental fortitude but also because she is a believer in her own dreams and, through her commitment to education, encourages others to follow theirs.
Our concert will feature music inspired by water. Large screens will project images as Ann narrates their significance.
We know her inspiration will impact those in the audience as well as 55 string students who will join the orchestra to perform Water Night by Eric Whitacre.
August 20, 2017
The Wayzata Symphony Orchestra is a unique orchestra. None of its members get paid to play. Their dedication to the orchestra, their disciplined personal preparation, their commitment to allowing risk in this ever-changing global orchestral landscape, their desire to continually improve: All of these attributes make me proud to be at the musical helm.
But even more than that, the musicians of the WSO are exemplars of MN citizenry – the type of people that make MN such a great state in which to live – all contribute to our community through their vocations and avocations, all support the arts, they are great friends and neighbors, they are open-minded, they share their knowledge and gifts with young people, on both sides of the political isle they work together for the common good.
So, as I think about starting my 8th season, I look forward to being amongst them, learning from them and hopefully, offering inspiring and convincing interpretations of the repertoire we have chosen for the season.
Stay tuned for another blog in a couple weeks – there is much to talk about!