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<<  -- 2 --  Bill Newman    SHARING THE RESPONSE


Going back to what is inside you that makes you different. I have listened to Libor perform Janácek, but somehow yours is not the same. Without detailing, when you did the Fairy Tale Suite there was a wonderful balanced, featherweight charm. 'There is nothing difficult there and you think you know how it should be. But if you are truthful, you realise that next week it will be nearer the truth because music is an art, not a science. If you really know, you are a scientist not a musician, because it depends on my position along with the score, the notes, the instruments taken together. It must be an Art, as there will always be another way. I cannot understand the conductor who performs Smetana's Ma Vlast fifteen times, and the difference is ten seconds. We have musicians like that, but I don't believe that any man can have the same mood for a period of fifteen days. It is not possible! Sometimes we are happy, at other times sad. It should never become a science, the music only partly here, rarely there.'

How do you feel about the time you have spent with this orchestra? Have you made an impression on them and your audiences? 'Four years is quite a long time, and at the beginning it was hard. I was not used all the time; now I am, but for me it was terrible conducting two to three programmes in one week. You are conducting Bruckner and Mahler, and here will go Mozart. While you are working on Schubert, there is Stravinsky. We are professionals. I myself am very emotional and have to hear it first, then learn it quickly. From here to tomorrow we have to change. Nice time, nice orchestra, very professional. English orchestras are very interesting.'

'Have you ever asked yourself why we are doing it? With 800-2000 people in the audience, some come because they want to, another because his girlfriend wanted a partner, and there is the person who would prefer to be watching television but has been persuaded to change his mind. Question any musician why he is playing his instrument, and the reply is because he has to.' Part of the suffering and the aggro is the enjoyment of doing it in participation with other colleagues. 'You can find many hidden reasons to be famous, to be rich, to make something. But you must see it when somebody is doing it to make money.' The conductor's task is to serve the composer. 'That's right.'

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Copyright © 5 July 2001 Bill Newman, Edgware, UK




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