Tuesday, April 14, 2009

San Francisco Talent at Work in New York

The YouTube Symphony Orchestra has been constituted and scheduled to perform in Carnegie Hall tomorrow night. Today James Oestreich filed a post on the ArtsBeat blog of The New York Times covering Monday's rehearsal activities. Those who saw all the happy and eager faces on the "Meet the YouTube Symphony Orchestra" YouTube video (linked to Oestreich's Monday post) may wonder, on the basis of Oestreich's account, if they are still happy and eager. They certainly must know by now what a stickler for detail Michael Tilson Thomas is; and he seems to have brought some of his best guns with him from San Francisco, who also do not skimp on the stickling! I have my own nit to pick with Oestreich, though. While it was probably fair to refer to Edwin Outwater as "a Thomas protégé" conductor, working with the percussionists to prepare Lou Harrison's "Canticle No. 3," describing Paulson as only the principal bassoonist of the San Francisco Symphony sort of short-changed his credentials. He is also Music Director of Symphony Parnassus and was therefore as capable as Outwater (if not more so) in leading and working with the winds to prepare movements from Antonín Dvořák's wind serenade. The road to Carnegie Hall seems to be paved with some of the best conducting talent that San Francisco has to offer, and it might be nice if at least one New Yorker showed them all a bit more respect!

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