Daily Archives: January 24, 2003

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I know you were all on tenterhooks, so I�ll end your agony: the Toronto Symphony Orchestra has announced their new conductor. It�s Peter Oundjian, the retired first violinist of the Tokyo Quartet who was forced to give up playing a few years ago because of hand problems. (Okay, I don�t know about you, but that�s a nightmare for a musician. Kind of like me worrying about losing my sight, being that I love reading and writing so much. When Oundjian announced his retirement from the Tokyo Quartet I was devastated.) The TSO has been operating under guest conductors for a couple of years ever since Jukka-Pekka Saraste left, so this announcement means that they have an artistic director again who can guide the orchestra under a single vision.

If this sounds vaguely familiar, it�s because our own Orchestre Symphonique de Montreal is in the same position. Charles Dutoit resigned last year and the OSM has sort of stumbled a bit without a leader. However, hope springs eternal, and rumours are flying that Kent Nagano is at the top of the search committee�s list. At the moment Nagano is the music director of Berlin’s Deutsches Symphony-Orchester Berlin as well as the principal conductor of the Los Angeles Opera. (Not that he�ll have to give those up; heck, Dutoit was the principal conductor of a handful of international orchestras. Racks up the air miles, but hey.)