Conducting Jean Valjean


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Ivan Rutherford and myself beaming after a most incredible concert.

Last weekend, November 19 and 20, 2013, I had the privilege and honor to share the stage with a great talent, Ivan Rutherford. Ivan has performed in the Broadway show, Les Misérables, in different capacities for 14 years. He played Jean Valjean over 2000 times.

The Shenandoah Symphony Orchestra which I conduct played flawlessly. We had two full houses and the audience was enthralled. Michelle Ponder sang like a pro, sharing the stage with Ivan.

For me, it was a great thrill as someone who loves movie and show music (see:

Good music is good music, whether a Symphony of Beethoven or a intensely emotional song like “Bring Him Home.” It is the love of music that is important and if you have that deep love for such an elusive but always giving art, then you can appreciate great works.

The ability to conduct a variety of genres is certainly special. To see greatness in all things music, then and only then you can call yourself a musician.

Thanks to the very talented musicians of the SSO and Ivan and Michelle, and to my most loyal audience. These are the magic ingredients that make memorable performances.



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