When a guest conductor arrives for a few concerts with an orchestra, he or she doesn’t have very much time to shape his or her interpretation. On some occasions the orchestra successfully adopts the visitor’s style; on others they just play like they always do. In Esa-Pekka Salonen’s concert with the Philadelphia Orchestra last night, the program of Debussy, Bartók, and the Finnish conductor’s own Violin Concerto was more the maestro’s style (cool modernist) than the orchestra’s (rather conservative and Romantic). The playing, however, was mostly typically Philadelphia. Sometimes this worked, and sometimes it didn’t.Read the full review here. I don't have much to add here, except to wish Yannick Nézet-Séguin the best in his new music directorship and say that I hope to see him conduct in Philadelphia soon. I lived in Philly for much of the Eschenbach era, which is inevitably described as "tumultuous" but despite the interpersonal drama involved a number of really good concerts. But the subsequent director-less years have been unfortunate, and I hope the orchestra can recover.
In other news, I've made it to Round 2 of Project: Arts Blogger (thanks for the support, people who voted!) so you can look forward to another think piece on another topic that has nothing to do with what I normally do as a blogger. Also, Manon, oui, oui, oui, etc.