David Runnion [[log in to unmask]] wrote:
>>Is it necessary to be somewhat of a tyrant to be a good conductor?
>No. It is necessary to be the authority, the one making the musical
>decisions, but not a tyrant. An orchestra is not a democracy, but there
>is a difference between a dictator and a popular president.
I must that I think that the conductor is a very masterful "president".
I imagine there must be a sort of mutual relationship and trust between
the orchestra and the conductor. The orchestra must rely on the conductor
and give him all - all - authority to decided, the conductor shall be the
unquestioned chief of the group, and it must follow him in wind and rain,
and obey him even if he is a tyrant. Else there will not be any
musicmaking. But it is also up to the conductor not to misuse his power.
The question is just if conductors in the old days (featuring for example
Fritz Reiner and the Toscacoockie), misused their power or maybe this
aggressive barking was the only way for Fritz Reiner to claim authority
and make the art possible.
>Well, there's an old phrase, "There's no such thing as a bad orchestra,
>only a bad conductor" and to a large extent, this is true. I play in an
>orchestra that is not by any means Major (Palma de Mallorca, Spain) and
>the difference in the quality of the performance is amazing, depending
>on the conductor. One week the musicmaking will be on the very highest
>level, exciting and involved, and the next week the same band will sound
>listless and un-together.
This is true for some orchestras and conductors, but the saying is wrong,
there is not always only the conductor. Wiener Philarmoniker can play well
under any conductor for example. The worst they do under "bad" conductors
is still better the the good of many other orchestras.
But it is true that inspiring conductors can bring obscure orchestras to
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