In the end, a choice had to be made to award one of those performers the opportunity to play their concerto with the Middlebury College Orchestra later this spring. That IS what I was there for, I told myself. And it was humbling to be part of that process.
Afterward, on the drive home, I had some time to reflect on the experience and revisit a long-held conviction that there are good reasons why these pieces of music, often centuries and decades old, endure as 'classics'. One of those reasons is the renewal the music enjoys every time it is learned for the first time, practiced to perfection, and given vital, fresh interpretation at the hands of sensitive and gifted musicians like the ones I had just heard play. It is timeless because it is infinitely adaptable, because it is alive, because it is not satisfied being contained in a single interpretation, like a static snapshot from a past age.
And so, to each one of yesterday's fine young performers, a sincere congratulations: more than learning a concerto, you are contributing to the artistic continuum - you are learning to make music!
Dir. of Music Programming