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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Goodbye, Gerard; Hello, Ludovic!

The Seattle Symphony has named Ludovic Morlot to the post of Music Director Designate for the 2010-11 season. In the 2011-12 season, Morlot takes over as Music Director, replacing Gerard Schwarz, who becomes Conductor Laureate.

I imagine a few players are breathing deep sighs of relief over this, especially those musicians in the 61-8 vote a few years back who were in favor of looking for new artistic leadership. Schwarz's tenure has been contentious, to say the least.

Previous blog postings on the subject:
Updates: Alex Ross links to a Seattle Times article where principal bassoonist Seth Krimsky, a member of the search committee, is quoted mentioning Morlot's rapport with the orchestra. Sounds good to me. Dan Wakin's Times article quotes musicians elsewhere calling him "collaborative." And here's a web page announcing the appointment at the orchestra itself.

10 comments:

Michael Walsh said...

Hallelujah! A block of wood would have been an improvement over Schwarz!

Joe Barron said...

Nice piece about Morlot in today's times. Apparently he was able to conduct Carter's Allegro scorrevole on short notice, which is more than Kurt Masur ever did.

But why does everyone hate Schwartz so much? His recordings for Naxos are excellent and explore little known repertoire. Just from listening to the CDs, you'd never know there was a problem.

Lisa Hirsch said...

Joe, he's done a terrible job as music director. He's had a quarter-century to bring the SSO into the big leagues and hasn't (see what Vaska's been doing in Minnesota, for contrast); he has managed to overstay his welcome; most of the orchestra hates him. See this Times article and lots of stuff over the years at Adaptistration for more details.

Joe Barron said...

The article suggests the problems were coming from the musicians as much as from Schwartz. But whatever the case, the change is overdue, I guess.

Henry Holland said...

Speaking of changes, Intermezzo is reporting that Kent Nagano is not going to have his contract renewed with the Bavarian State Opera in Munich when it expires after the 2011/12. Add him to the possible SFO conductors list below!

Lisa Hirsch said...

That's true, but he's on my "Do not want" list. He is superb with new and contemporary music. His accounts of standard rep? Oy. Unfortunately SFS needs someone who can conduct the latter well.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps a small detail, but not to any who know him...the Seattle principal bassoonist's name is Seth KRIMSKY, not Kaminsky. Please watch out for those too-quick typos, as in your comment about Osmo Vänska in this very thread (you spelled it Vaska).

Lisa Hirsch said...

If you're planning to correct all of my typos...well, you'll have a lot of comments to make!

I fixed Seth Krimsky's name in the body of the post, but comments are not editable, so I cannot correct "Vaska."

Of course, typos happen, and they're not a crime. I see, for example, that you omitted the second umlaut in Vänskä.

Anonymous said...

Point taken! And apologies for sounding so snippy in the first place.

Lisa Hirsch said...

It's okay!