Saturday, March 29, 2008

Humility & Passion - Gustavo Dudamel

Last night we had the honor to attend Disney Hall, and experience the conducting of Gustavo Dudamel, the new (September 2009) conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. The music was wonderful, the conducting passionate. I think I witnessed a visual representation of Joy.

What impressed me most was Mr. Dudamel's sense (at 27 years old) of his place on stage. Mr. Dudamel is a young phenom, and it would be easy for him to assume the roll of classical music conductor / rock star. But this is not what we saw at all.

Mr. Dudamel chose to conduct the final piece, Berlioz's "Symphonie fantastique", without sheet music. I was concerned he was trying to grand stand, and show the audience how much he knew. Not so at all. This was a young man who had, it seemed, literally crawled inside of a 50 minute piece, and let it become part of his soul.

The best part for me occurred after the music was over. What impressed me most was not the music, or the conducting, or the leadership of this young man. What left a mark on me was his great sense of humility, of his place in the orchestra. When the concert was over, and Mr. Dudamel came back on stage to take an encore bow, instead of standing alone in front of the orchestra, he moved several rows back into the orchestra, becoming a part of the greater whole. And then he turned around and motioned for many individuals, who had played beautiful parts during the concert, to stand, and receive their due. It was moving and wonderful - the probable classical conducting rock star standing aside, and giving way to the
"little people" of the orchestra. It was beautiful. The best part occurred during the applause.

I am a Gustavo Dudamel fan. Count me in. This young man has the potential, if he can keep his sense of humility, to going far, and in doing so, blessing the world of classical music in Los Angeles for years to come. We are fortunate to have him. Welcome to LA, Gustavo.

For a wonderful peak into the character of this man, please, take a few minutes and watch the interview below. All my pastor friends need to watch this.....I think you will get it very easily, without any explanation needed. Not a bit.

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