In Thursday’s (6/18) Nashville Scene, Russell Johnston writes, “When Kenneth Schermerhorn died in 2005, after more than two decades at the helm of the Nashville Symphony Orchestra, the maestro left an unusually large void. … While the NSO searched for a permanent music director, it hit upon a dramatic short-term solution: Call Leonard Slatkin. As the man who built the St. Louis Symphony … into a top-level orchestra, Slatkin seemed uniquely suited to develop the Nashville Symphony’s musical polish and national reputation. Symphony President Alan Valentine persuaded Slatkin to sign on, first for the new hall’s gala opening, then for a three-year term as a music advisor. His benchmark would come when Nashville hosted the 2007 conference of the American Symphony Orchestra League—a coming-out party that would test the NSO’s mettle. … This weekend, Slatkin closes the circle on his formal affiliation with the Nashville Symphony, revisiting some of the music that began the partnership.” Slatkin’s final Nashville program includes Brahms’s Second Symphony, Bruch’s Violin Concerto, and Joan Tower’s Made in America, commissioned by a consortium of orchestras , premiered by the Glens Falls Symphony Orchestra, and recorded by Slatkin and the Nashville Symphony.

Made in America was the first composition of the Ford Made in America program, a partnership program of the League of American Orchestras and Meet The Composer. Ford Made in America is made possible by Ford Motor Company Fund, the philanthropic arm of Ford Motor Company. The first round of Ford Made in America was also generously supported by the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional funding was provided by The Aaron Copland Fund for Music, JPMorgan Chase, Argosy Foundation Contemporary Music Fund, and The Amphion Foundation.

Photo: Leonard Slatkin leads the Nashville Symphony at the American Symphony Orchestra League National Conference, 2007
Credit: Matthew H. Starling

Posted June 19, 2009