“Jet-set conductor Donald Runnicles is all over the map, literally,” writes Sarah Zaslaw in Tuesday’s (6/11) Georgia Public Broadcasting. “In Berlin, he’s music director of the German Opera. In Wyoming, he heads the Grand Teton Music Festival. And he often visits Georgia as principal guest conductor of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra.” Runnicles speaks in the interview about his father, a church choirmaster and amateur pianist, as inspiration, on whether conductors must also be pianists (“it’s not absolutely essential … but it’s very important to have some training in which you’ve actually sat in an orchestra”), on reading complex orchestral scores (“your eye moves to what is at that moment the most important line”), on whether he marks up his scores (“I used to … but I don’t now … I started marking up my score too much, after a while there were so many markings I found that when I conducted myself I was conducting the markings, not really looking at the music”) and what career he would have pursued if not music (“I would have been a pilot … I have a flight simulator, both in Berlin and in Jackson Hole, and I fly as much as I can”).

Posted June 17, 2019

Photo of Donald Runnicles by Robert Kusel