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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000252.txt from 1999/06

From: "Don Yungkurth" <>
Subj: [kl] Re: movement of musicians
Date: Sun, 6 Jun 1999 10:28:52 -0400

Bill Hausmann wrote:

>>>It is a fact of life that in any group of, say, 65 musicians and a
conductor, there are 65 and ONLY 65 people who know how the piece SHOULD be
played. Somehow that white stick drains all musical taste out of anyone
who holds it. Just ask any of the 65! The joy of conducting is that you
get to play it YOUR way. The downside is that all the rest of the group
thinks you are an idiot. If your skin is thick enough, it's OK. It's
better than sitting in the clarinet section grousing about the
gesticulating moron up front!<<<

I hope this was written tongue-in-cheek. I don't find this sort of
situation to be inevitable or even common. In the three groups I play in
regularly (two orchestras and one band of varying competence) I find that
the conductors are generally accepted as highly beneficial by the group.
They give us discipline and continual reminders of the things we tend to
forget (dynamics, phrasing etc.). Whether a big ego gets them in front of
us or not, I feel they are contributing far more than they receive.

In one orchestra, the best of these three groups, the conductor is indeed
the reason that most of us are there. This is a college-community
orchestra, but 2/3 of the players are community. I drive 55 miles round
trip for the privilege of playing (and rehearsing!) with this conductor.
She gets most of to play well beyond what we are capable of artistically on
our own.

I really hope for your sake that this was intended as humor - if not you
might be better off finding other things to do with your time or different
places to play.

Don Yungkurth (

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