Conductors at smaller orchestras
They operate in the shade of the so-called "Big Five" - orchestras in Phoenix, AZ, Milwaukee, WI, and New Orleans, LA. But these three orchestras have at least one thing in common with the top orchestras - they afford themselves music directors from Germany, because German maestri are highly-esteemed in the United States. While Philadelphia, New York, and Cleveland were able to attract, respectively, Wolfgang Sawallisch, Kurt Masur, and Christoph von Dohnanyi, the orchestras in the presumed backlands have become second homes for Hermann Michael, Andreas Delfs, and Klauspeter Seibel. However, the smaller orchestras are not parochial at all. And they work just as diligently and efficiently as the star orchestras. This, at least, is the insight that their German conductors have gained, and they are likely to know. Not spending a major part of their time jet-setting from one guest performance to another, they are in closer contact with the day-in day-out business of their orchestras than their prominent German counterparts. Georg Hirsch spoke with three German conductors in America.
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