Andris Nelsons’ first night: So how was it for you?

It was a gala night at the Boston Symphony, ushering in the new music director with the help of two singing stars – Jonas Kaufmann and the conductor’s wife, Kristine Opolais. Except Mrs Nelsons was not, apparently, feeling well. Read first review from our pals at Boston CR here.

3-Andris-Nelsons-debuts-as-the-new-music-director-of-the-Boston-Symphony-with-acclaimed-soprano-Kristine-Opolais-Mr.-Nelsons’-wife-and-Jonas-Kaufmann-one-of-the-leading-tenors-of-our-time-9.27.14-Chris-Lee

UPDATE: First video:

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  • I’m disappointed to see that Nelsons has the strings in worst of the ‘modern’ seating plans–without divided violins and with the cellos aimed at him and not the audience. One of the glories of the Levine era at the BSO was his use of the ‘old’ seating plan (divided violins, cellos next to the firsts pointed more toward the audience). Following what seemed to be a trend back then, it was Koussevitzky who foisted the modern plan on the BSO, back in the 30s if I recall correctly.

  • Of course Andris is highly “marketable” which is what the BSO management needs. They took a pass on Jurowski and never even considered David Robertson, both of whom are more cultured and thoughtful musicians than Andris. The only time since Koussevitsky that the BSO hired a music director of the first rank was when they brought in Levine. The job he did in revitalizing the orchestra after the long, demoralizing but of course “marketable” Ozawa tenure was so amazing that they were able to maintain their quality through their recent director-less black hole following Levine’s resignation.

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