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When maestro could not find his green room…

From our China correspondent, Rudolph Tang:

After conducting the China National Symphony Orchestra in Bruckner’s 8th Symphony at the National Centre for the Performing Arts in Beijing, the visiting maestro went out from his dressing room and greeted people and had photos with them and signed lots and lots of CDs.

Half an hour later when everyone had gone, he suddenly realized that he could not find his room. Because his name tag was printed in Chinese only. It says 弗洛.

Any idea who he was? (He didn’t).

claus peter flor        name on door

Advice to conductors on China tour: remember the number on your door.

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  1. Ha! Fuluo(r) of course!

  2. SergioM says:

    Looks like Claus Peter Flor

  3. Graham Atkinson says:

    There is a similar tale from very early in the life of the Sydney Opera House when the distinguished conductor (I believe Franz Paul Dekker) left his dressing room to go to the main concert hall for a performance by the ABC Sydney Symphony (as it was called then). Unfortunately he took a wrong turn and finished in the basement where he eventually found a house phone and called security who found him and escorted him to the rostrum some 15 minutes late.

    After that all visiting artsits were escorted either by a member of Opera House staff or the SSO.

    • Graham Atkinson, I love your comment: similar things have happened to me! I find that when I’m totally concentrated on the task ahead I often get a weird sort of geographical dyslexia and it’s possible for me to become totally, inexplicably LOST. I think all concert halls should provide an escort of this kind from dressing room to stage entrance!

  4. Conductors’ troubles to arrive in time on the rostrum and via the right trajectory, can reach absurdist levels. I know of a conductor who, when arriving in Mexico City, was kidnapped when orchestral players fetched him from the airport and brought him, instead of to his hotel as had been agreed upon, to an isolated house in the subburbs and kept him there with force until the management of the orchestra reverted their plan to cut the musicians’ salaries.

    Another conductor, invited to work with a rather provincial orchestra in Finland, rehearsed the orchestra in a building different from the concert hall, which was adjacent to some sort of sauna. When he went up to the stage at the evening of the concert, perfectly attired with tailes, he got lost in the labyrinthine corridors and for some reason ended-up in a damp-filled hall amidst a naked crowd.

  5. Something similar happened to Ole Schmidt, after he had conducted the second-ever professional performance of Havergal Brian’s _Gothic Symphony_ at the Albert Hall on 25 May 1980. The BBC had put on a reception after the concert and so Ole, still in his frack, went straight there, did the glad-handing and had a drink (not as much as you might expect: we had had lunch a few days beforehand and he drank his way through only a bottle of champagne — “as a concession to my doctor”, he proudly told me). After the reception he made his way back to the Green Room, got showered and changed — and emerged into an Albert Hall that was pitch black. Ole quite literally couldn’t see a thing and so he felt his way along the walls as best he could until he eventually came across an electrician doing some night-work, and it was he who let him out.

  6. Mark Stratford says:

    When the Barbican Hall London was new, violinist Salvatore Accardo got locked in a side room somewhere and sent the orchestra and hall administrators hairless when he was supposed to go on stage.

  7. Just listened to Strauss’s Also Sprach Zarathustra. I can’t believe a human created this. The orchestration alone is unbelievable. It’s beyond great.

  8. Peter Shi says:

    It’s the fault of the National Symphony Orchestra and the person in charge of this performance in NCPA. When I was in NCPA, my artists would always see his/her name in the original form – BTW, I love the Mexico and Finland story told by John Borstlap!

  9. stephanie says:

    haha, funny. Hope he found it in the end. Anyway, very welcome to perform in China!

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