Slipped Disc editorial: Atlanta, after the axeman, must dig deep to make peace

Slipped Disc editorial: Atlanta, after the axeman, must dig deep to make peace


norman lebrecht

September 29, 2014

The circumstances of Stanley Romanstein’s departure are becoming clearer by the minute.

Sources close to the dispute tell Slipped Disc that he was fired a week ago after the board perceived his weakness. Why he was allowed to hang around is uncertain, perhaps a sign of divisions within the board. More heads may yet have to roll.

Either way, the heat is now on the board and on the controlling Woodruff Arts Center, whose president, Vrginia Hepner, needs to explain why she diverted millions in funds away from the struggling orchestra.

At issue now is  question of will. Does Atlanta want a front-rank orchestra? If so, it needs to invest in extra musicians and qualified management. No more half-baked doctors of irrelevance from a low-budget sidelie. Atlanta, like Minnesota before it, must call in a tried-and-tested administrator to make peace and start over.


atlanta chorus picket


  • Pamela Brown says:

    Heaving a great sigh of relief in Minnesota…perhaps a return to sanity is possible after all…

  • George says:

    It’s a nationally known orchestra. We hear their recordings often on our classical music station here in Maryland.

  • Bantrybay says:

    I’d say that the head of the snake can still bite. All that was cut off was the tail.

  • I agree with BANTRYBAY! Hepner is a huge problem along with some board members! Thanks as always for the great information!

  • Jan Robison says:

    “After the board perceived his weakness” really? It certainly took them long enough. In all fairness though he was/is only the lil puppet. That’s what happens when toys become tiresome.

  • jack says:

    Norm, what do you mean by “perceived weakness”? He was not nasty enough?

  • harold braun says:

    Hepner´s head must roll next.

  • Mark Gresham says:

    I think the most immediate concerns here in Atanta are for Sept. 30:

    1) The musicians’ health insurance goes away at midnight.

    2) Will Ian Anderson and his “Best of Jethro Tull” tour show heed the music union’s International Unfair List and refuse to play at the WAC/Symphony Hall for ASO Presents, which are both on the list? As far as is known locally, Anderson’s show is still on and he will perform. But does he and his band even know WAC and ASO Presents are on the Unfair List, being touring musicians on a busy schedule? Sept. 28 theur played in suburban Houston. Sept. 29 was a day off, travel day. Likely thay have been in Atlanta since Monday afternoon. But are they aware? Expecting him to read the many pleas on Facebook is entirely unrealistic We shall see what hits the fan, if anything at all, on Tuesday..

    • Mark Gresham says:

      Apologies for the many typos there, it is late here in Atlanta and I am extremely tired from a long day of writing and researching. (And correcting typos!)

  • NYMike says:

    A search of AFM’s membership roster reveals that Ian Anderson is not a member. As such, he may not give a damn about the AFM’s unfair list.

  • Amy says:

    You can’t expect me to ignore a straight line like that, Pamela. 🙂