In Friday’s (9/5) Classical Voice North America, Dorothy Andries writes, “How does a regional orchestra find a new music director? That was the challenge facing the 57-year-old Lake Forest Symphony,” 32 miles north of Chicago. The search, which began in 2013, resulted in the selection of Vladimir Kulenovic, 34, associate conductor of the Utah Symphony and resident conductor of the Belgrade Philharmonic. The five finalists were “judged on more than their music-making. In addition to rehearsing for the upcoming concerts, the candidates had tea with the women of the Lake Forest Symphony Guild, attended dinners with donors, and went to pre-concert lectures and post-concert receptions.… Search committee member Joanna Rolek emphasized the importance of audience engagement for the orchestra’s long-term health. ‘In this day and age we can listen to all the great classical masterpieces whenever we want, wherever we want,’ she said. ‘So the experience … must be so compelling that the audience is glad to be there and wants to come back again.  I think our new music director has the ability to do that.’ ” Kulenovic was one of six conductors who participated in the League of American Orchestras’ Bruno Walter National Conductor Preview hosted by the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra in March 2013.

Posted September 8, 2014