“Conductor Jonathon Heyward … can still picture where he sat decades removed from his first visit to Atlanta’s Symphony Hall to see the orchestra … on a school trip,” writes Jon Ross in Wednesday’s (3/16) Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “The impression on that Augusta-born, Charleston-bred kid stuck…. Heyward, 29, … [who was] was appointed chief conductor of the German [Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie] last year, said that [early] experience ‘solidified his passion’ for a career in classical music…. The conductor returns to Symphony Hall March 24 and 26 for his Atlanta Symphony Orchestra debut, leading … Beethoven’s ‘Leonore’ Overture No. 3, Symphony No. 9 by Dmitri Shostakovich and the world premiere of Xavier Dubois Foley’s ‘Soul Bass,’ an ASO commission…. Heyward … had been engaged to come to Atlanta two years ago … but that May 2020 program never occurred due to the pandemic. During the months of shutdowns, … he undertook a deep study of Schumann symphonies [and] looked inward, exploring the true meaning of being an ambassador for classical music…. As a multiracial conductor in a traditionally white industry, Heyward … focuses on showing young kids ‘that this path, this industry, is for everyone’—leading by example.”