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Monday, July 22, 2013

Swinging Door Nixes Tanglewood Trip

Conductor Andris Nelsons cancels BSO commitment due to severe concussion.
by Paul J. Pelkonen
Newly minted BSO music director Andris Nelsons was whacked in the head by a door
and will not conduct the Boston Symphony Orchestra on Saturday at Tanglewood.
Strange news coming out of the Boston Symphony Orchestra press office today. According to a pair of statements issued this afternoon, the orchestra's new music director Andris Nelsons will not be leading the Verdi Requiem at Tanglewood on Saturday night, due to a swnging door.

In a statement, BSO managing director Mark Volpe writes: "“Due to a household accident that has resulted in a severe concussion, Andris Nelsons will not be able to conduct the Verdi Requiem at Tanglewood on July 27." According to the statement, Mr. Nelsons suffered a "severe concussion" when he was struck on the head by a door that "unexpectedly swung open" at his residence in Bayreuth, Germany.

Mr. Nelsons is scheduled to conduct Bayreuth performances of Wagner's Lohengrin this summer. He is beginning his first contract as the new music director of the BSO, an organization that had left that post vacant since James Levine stepped down in 2011.

The Latvian conductor is currently under hospital care, and doctors have advised him not to fly. "His doctors report that he is expected to make a full recovery but, as always with concussions, Mr. Nelsons has been strongly advised to take time out of his work schedule and not travel by plane at all at this time," Mr. Volpe continued. "As always with concussions, Mr. Nelsons has been strongly advised to take time out of his work schedule and not travel by plane at all at this time. It is therefore with a heavy heart that he is forced to withdraw from his Tanglewood performance.

In a statement, Mr. Nelsons said: "Truly, I feel a great sense of sadness at not being able to come to Tanglewood this week to conduct the Verdi Requiem and to spend time amongst our great musical family, including Tanglewood's wonderfully supportive audience.  I will miss you all and am very sorry indeed that this very unfortunate accident prevents me from being there."

An announcement as to the conductor of Saturday's concert is forthcoming. It might be Christoph Eschenbach, who is in Lenox this weekend to conduct works by Mozart, Prokifiev and Dvorak.

Mr. Nelsons added: "I am grateful to be receiving the best possible medical attention and am currently resting well. I promise I will recover as soon as possible and very much look forward to coming back in good shape for my performances with the orchestra in October in Boston.”

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Since 2007, Superconductor has grown from an occasional concert or CD review to a near-daily publication covering classical music, opera and the arts in and around NYC, with excursions to Boston, Philadelphia, and upstate NY. I am a freelance writer living and working in Brooklyn NY. And no, I'm not a conductor.