Ludovic Morlot to Head Seattle Symphony

SEATTLE, WA. Seattle Symphony Orchestra Board of Directors Chair Leslie Jackson Chihuly and Interim Executive Director Mark McCampbell announced today that French conductor Ludovic Morlot has been named Music Director Designate, beginning in the 2010-2011 season.

Maestro Morlot will assume the role of Music Director at the beginning of the 2011-2012 season with an initial six-year contract. Seattle Symphony's current Music Director, Gerard Schwarz, who has held that role since 1985, will assume the title of Conductor Laureate after his final season in 2010-2011.

"I am thrilled and grateful to be given this wonderful opportunity to lead the Seattle Symphony into a new era," remarked Morlot. "I am eager to share many musical moments and emotions with the Orchestra and its faithful audience, and to meet new concertgoers in the beautiful Benaroya Hall. My family and I feel privileged that we will soon become part of the Seattle community."

During Morlot's first season as Music Director in 2011-2012, he will conduct a minimum of eight weeks during the regular concert season. He will conduct a minimum of thirteen weeks each season through the end of his initial contract in 2017.

When the then thirty-five-year-old Morlot made his debut with the Seattle Symphony in October 2009, the Seattle Times' Melinda Bargreen praised his "quick, snappy gestures and mercurial intensity [that] seemed to energize the orchestra." He was re-engaged later this season, when a schedule change prevented Roberto Abbado from appearing with the symphony. However, travel disruptions caused by the volcanic eruption in Iceland forced Morlot to miss two rehearsals and change the program on short notice. Under these challenging circumstances he delivered strong and exciting performances that underscored his remarkable poise, artistic presence and leadership qualities. The Music Director Search Committee then voted unanimously to recommend Mr. Morlot to the Board.

Kirshbaum Demler & Associates, PR

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John J. Puccio

John J. Puccio

About the Author

Understand, I'm just an everyday guy reacting to something I love. And I've been doing it for a very long time, my appreciation for classical music starting with the musical excerpts on The Big John and Sparkie radio show in the early Fifties and the purchase of my first recording, The 101 Strings Play the Classics, around 1956. In the late Sixties I began teaching high school English and Film Studies as well as becoming interested in hi-fi, my audio ambitions graduating me from a pair of AR-3 speakers to the Fulton J's recommended by The Stereophile's J. Gordon Holt. In the early Seventies, I began writing for a number of audio magazines, including Audio Excellence, Audio Forum, The Boston Audio Society Speaker, The American Record Guide, and from 1976 until 2008, The $ensible Sound, for which I served as Classical Music Editor.

Today, I'm retired from teaching and use a pair of bi-amped VMPS RM40s loudspeakers for my listening. In addition to writing the Classical Candor blog, I served as the Movie Review Editor for the Web site Movie Metropolis (formerly DVDTown) from 1997-2013. Music and movies. Life couldn't be better.

Mission Statement

It is the goal of Classical Candor to promote the enjoyment of classical music. Other forms of music come and go--minuets, waltzes, ragtime, blues, jazz, bebop, country-western, rock-'n'-roll, heavy metal, rap, and the rest--but classical music has been around for hundreds of years and will continue to be around for hundreds more. It's no accident that every major city in the world has one or more symphony orchestras.

When I was young, I heard it said that only intellectuals could appreciate classical music, that it required dedicated concentration to appreciate. Nonsense. I'm no intellectual, and I've always loved classical music. Anyone who's ever seen and enjoyed Disney's Fantasia or a Looney Tunes cartoon playing Rossini's William Tell Overture or Liszt's Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2 can attest to the power and joy of classical music, and that's just about everybody.

So, if Classical Candor can expand one's awareness of classical music and bring more joy to one's life, more power to it. It's done its job.

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"Their Master's Voice" by Michael Sowa

"Their Master's Voice" by Michael Sowa