With the short week everything has been crammed into a few early days so I haven't been able to get to this:
Miffed maestro withdraws from Mass. concerts
BOSTON (AP) - An eminent Russian conductor has pulled out of a series of concerts with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, saying he felt insulted by the way his appearances were marketed.
The Boston Globe reported that Gennady Rozhdestvensky (geh-NAH-dee rahzh-DYEST-vehn-skee) left town on Saturday, fuming over the disrespect he said the BSO showed him.
The 77-year-old maestro was scheduled to conduct four concerts, starting Thursday and running through Tuesday.
Rozhdestvensky said the trouble started when he noticed the week's soloist, cellist Lynn Harrell, got top billing on a promotional poster.
He later learned the BSO's season brochure didn't list him in its "Distinguished Conductors" section, mentioning him only in connection with Harrell.
The BSO's managing director, Mark Volpe, said the orchestra greatly admires Rozhdestvensky and regrets he canceled his concerts.
OK, this sounds bad, and I suppose Rozhdestvensky is acting like a diva here if the reports are true. But can we give a break to someone who has given so much to classical music and who has endured so much as an artist in the Soviet Union? When did classical music become celebrity gossip? This report borders on sensationalism. I am not saying cut him a break -- Rozhdestvensky was contracted and broke it -- but put some more context in the reports, flesh out this man and the industry that could push someone to react as he did. Right now, he is being portrayed like a common criminal when in fact he is indeed one of the world's "distinguished conductors," even if he is not the conductor he once was.