This post is about now. Now, I lead one of these concerts – one of these performances that is part tradition, part beauty, part fun, and all community. The office knows how much I struggle over putting the show together. I’m sure they roll their eyes when I change the order of the second set “just one more time.” I know it’s difficult to see me vacillate over the right mix of tradition and innovation throughout the greater part of the year. (Yes – I start in June, and I just made another change yesterday!) Here are just a few of the questions over which I struggle for months.
I tell you, it’s agonizing.
Recently, I went to the Shaw Library, and was pleased find evidence that he struggled, too. He had the programming down to a science, for sure, but seemed to continuously fine tune things from year to year. Here’s the second page of a worksheet from 1976. Pieces scratched out. Timings meticulously summed up.
This year, the Richmond Symphony’s family holiday concert (called “Let it Snow”) includes more variety than ever:
But, the anxiety, the questions, the circus, and listening to Christmas music during the heat of July are all worth it! If this concert makes just one person connect to music in a way that offers her the same kind of artistic fulfillment I’ve been fortunate to have, then my goal will have been accomplished.
And, it won’t hurt if everyone has a good time, too!