Tag Archives: MOA

#MinnegeddonPartDeux – Now what? (or, the fallout continues)

While OV begins negotiations to return in some capacity to the MO, eight board members of MOA have resigned as a result of the dismissal of Mr. Henson.  While all of this seems quite to be expected, as the chips fall from the prolonged lockout of eighteen months, we are given yet another fascinating glimpse into the innards of this organization.  

Are there underlying reasons for these events?  Are there other shoes to fall, so to speak? Will the ‘rebellion’ staged by the players in refusing to crawl back to MOA after being locked-out and the encouragement of their leader who stood up to MOA on their behalf continue to the point of trying to, in effect, clean house at MOA and, in effect, perhaps even try to take control of the endowment? Or, if they do not get their way, might they even try to form another organization and attempt to have the endowment transferred to them? 

Ironically, it may well have been the legacy of those who are leaving or who have already resigned to have managed, in their own at-times bumbling way, to keep MO from going belly-up during a time of great crisis and transition.  

Certainly, this is an interesting time…


#MinnegeddonPartDeux — What’s going on at MOA? s d reply…

I don’t live in the world of 200M organizations, but it seems to me that it would be extremely reckless for MOA to embark on a course that involves humiliating its employees and blithely waving goodbye to the conductor who brought them to world-class status, without having a “Plan B” in place prior to the lockout. Surely any of those on the Board who enabled Mr. Henson’s strategies should have realized that he, at the very least, would have to take responsibility for the consequences. My question is, ‘why have they been dragging their heels?” :-0


#Minnegeddon — angst at its finest…but is it Mozart, or anti-Mozart? :-0

The locked out MO players have banded together with the almost-equally-distressed Minnesota Chorale this weekend, in a program of sadness — the Britten War Requiem and the piece most distasteful to Wolf in his last days — the Mozart Requiem:


It is ironic, of course, that the MO has a connection to the anti-Mozart movie “Amadeus”, in that the score was conducted by its then director, SNM, who reportedly was upset when he realized there was no Oscar category for a movie score not composed for the movie. 

It is also ironic that back in the 70’s the then-conductor SS, along with the help of the Board, decided to change the name of the treasured and highly-regarded Minneapolis Symphony to the “Minnesota Orchestra”.  Apparently, none of them had done their homework.  In fact, SS is known to claim that he ‘loves Mozart’ yet seems to have very little understanding of what the real Mozart was all about.  Hence, the new name of the MSO is quite similar to that of the wicked servant in Sarastro’s temple — Monostatos.  Ironically, too, of course, there was no “Minnesota” in 1791 when Mozart wrote his last major opera Die Zauberflote, so one might open the door to the possibility that Mozart was either psychic or a prophet.  

And then we have the saga of the MO, in which a handful of players decided (without bothering to inform the MOA) to try to entice the Other Mozart onto the stage at Orchestra Hall to practice, in order to make them a target for destruction.  All of the information regarding these events have been made available to all of the parties involved.  As yet, it seems that no one has, as yet, been able to see the forest for the trees.  And now we have the locked-out players appearing to prefer the highly controversial Mostly-Mozart Requiem of Wolf to providing a proper introduction for the living one which they continue to try to keep locked-out.  Irony, indeed….


#Minnegeddon — Darkness in the tomb of the MOA

Despite the investment of tens of millions of dollars, Orchestra Hall remains dark for yet another New Year’s Day.  The place is silent, except for performances of those few who dare to face the wrath of the union and its players by performing there during the lockout.  Is there a lesson to be learned, other than the obvious one — that union and management must support each other no matter what the cost or both will go down in flames?

This situation calls to my attention the recollection of my experiences on the darkened stage, where, at one time, I was enticed and even encouraged to practice by a handful of the players.  The sound soared throughout the hall, from pieces not only from the flute repertoire, but from the violin as well.  Players crept onto the stage to say remarkable things, then slink into the background to whisper behind my back.

At the time I was convinced doors would open for me and die zauberflote. How could they not — didn’t everyone love Mozart? But, sadly, that was not the case — not only does it turn out the real Mozart (not the fictional “Amadeus” version) was almost universally despised — but that he was perhaps even murdered, to blot out the extra gift he had that no one told him about.

I recall wondering at the time if music was really about a battle between light and darkness.  It seemed the darkness was trying to blot out the light.  Perhaps those who played Mozart’s music while secretly holding him in contempt blotted out at least some of that extra gift?

But then, after this big organization ground to a halt, I began to wonder if it was possible there was a connection between that lockout and what happened to me some time ago on that stage.  And I began to wonder, if light were to triumph over darkness, that is — if what people recall of the old Orchestra Hall might not be that at one time I practiced there?

#Minnegeddon — thinking outside of the box…

There have been a spate of articles recently on the stalemate of the MOA and the locked-out players.  Here is just one:


Unfortunately, all of these articles seem to have been written from a mindset of thinking ‘inside-the-box’.  Everyone is fretting and worrying about the “Minnesota Orchestra” and its players.  This is all fair and good — however, it seems to be only part of the picture.

As I have stated in other posts, when the MO decided the name “Minneapolis Symphony” no longer suited its needs, despite the fact that it had gained worldwide aclaim under it, everyone involved in making this decision should have done their homework.  Especially the now-conductor-emeritus SS, who undoubtedly has a detailed understanding of music and music history.  Apparently, nobody bothered to take anything but a superficial, if any, look at a profound mystery that could be impacting itself on this state, as symbolized by the name change of the orchestra.

Why was Wolfgang Mozart’s life cut short in such a dramatic and unexpected way?  Did he die a natural death, or was he, perhaps murdered?  Why was there always so much conflict around Mozart and everything he did?  Why, no matter how hard he tried, was he unable to be treated as anything other than the ‘bad boy’ of classical music — almost universally disliked and disrespected?  How could one man be at the center of what seemed to be such a vicious vortex?  

Ironically, another product with a connection to Minnesota attempted to explain this — the sardonic, sarcastic and even contemptuous portrayal of Wolfgang Mozart in the 80’s movie “Amadeus”.  It was Sir NM, who was, at the time, director of the MO, who was responsible for the sound track for that movie.  

One might get the impression from “Amadeus” that Wolfgang Mozart was dead and gone, never to be a bother again.  And good riddance, one might add.  But again, as I say, that may be a very superficial view.

It is my thesis that the name change from the MSO to the MO heralded a new era, not just in the history of this particular orchestra, but in that of classical music itself.  All the angst and apparent death pangs of the last fifteen months, however, may, instead, be indications of a new and exciting time for everyone involved.  

Just a thought to consider…



#Minnegeddon — Flushing out the villain(s) in the MO debacle…s d reply…

SH said: Whoever is in charge of this debacle should be thrown out by its ear never to be seen and heard from again.

I agree. But from my standpoint there is one who led everyone else astray who has not yet been fully flushed out…a “Monostatos”, so to speak…:-0


#Minnegeddon — Is there another reason why the MO has ground to a halt? s d reply to “Amy”

My reply was intended to help anyone who is interested think outside of the box.

And btw, P2A is finished, except for the epilogue, which happens to be entitled “Revenge of the Mozarts”. :-)


#Minnegeddon — the clock ticks down…s d reply

This is not attempt to ‘justify’ any of the MOA actions. However, there may be a possibility than an understanding of this issue might further define the complexity of the situation MOA could be facing.

What if, for example, they are scurrying around trying to figure out how how not to be labeled ‘the band that locked out Mozart’? What if they have done what they can to flush out anyone involved? Now what do they do? :-0


The other, ‘other’ shoe that may be contributing to the current #Minnegeddon

If you are willing to think outside-of-the-box, find a copy of the score to Mozart’s last major opera and check out the character Monostatos. Take a moment to figure out how this character tries to take fate into his own hands, and lead the noble vision of Sarastro and his priests astray.  How does Monostatos try to influence Pamina?

In the opera, Sarastro promptly removes Monostatos when he realizes he is a traitor.  The temple is preserved, the knights are safe (until the final battle).  What if Sarastro were to have allowed Monostatos to remain in the temple?  What would have happened then?  Would the priests have been destroyed and Sarastro be out of a job?

#Minnegeddon — another issue that Hensen et al may be dealing with…s d reply…

With all due respect, that is your opinion about Hensen and you are entitled. My position on him and MOA is somewhat different. I happen to have a somewhat unique perspective, which you may choose to accept or not.

While I agree that MOA does seem to have actual malevolence against the players, I think that they may perceive that as not entirely unjustified. In one case, at least, things have happened behind the back of the board that could also affect the existence of the orchestra. It may be that MOA is flushing trying to flush anyone involved with this out, albeit in a clumsy manner with dire consequences.