Classical New Year's resolutions

I, Gerard Schwarz, do hereby resolve to continue the Seattle Symphony's May contemporary world music festivals, the best programming idea I've had in a long time.

I, Speight Jenkins, resolve to commission a new opera for Seattle Opera's first season (2003-2004) in McCaw Hall. (It's not too late; Rossini wrote The Barber of Seville in two weeks.)

We, the Board of Directors of the Seattle Youth Orchestra, resolve to hire a replacement for conductor Jonathan Shames who is as enthusiastic about, and committed to, new music as Shames was.

We, the conductors of touring orchestras, resolve not to bring to Seattle less interesting programs than we bring to other cities—for example, the Los Angeles Philharmonic playing a Beethoven warhorse at Benaroya in March right after performing The Rite of Spring in N.Y.C.—just because we're worried you might be too provincial to handle them.

I, Fred Coleman, resolve that when the Seattle Choral Company commissions a work to celebrate Seattle's bicentennial in 2051, I'll turn to a composer who's actually from Seattle—not one from New York, like I did for the sesquicentennial concert in November.

We, the organizers of last summer's Tacoma International Music Festival, resolve to move forward confidently after our strong debut season.

We, the UW School of Music, resolve to give Claudia Zahn carte blanche for any opera we produce, because she's a brilliant director.

We, the conductors of Seattle's community orchestras, resolve never again to make our players wear formal concert black. We recognize that tuxes clash with the comfortable informality wherein resides the charm of a community-orchestra concert. And they're just the teensiest bit pretentious.

We, the Emerson String Quartet, the Seattle Chamber Players, the Esoterics, and Music of Remembrance, resolve to continue to produce unfailingly fascinating concerts.

We, Seattle's classical concert audience, resolve to attend at least one concert in 2002 by an ensemble we've never heard before; to unwrap our crinkly cellophane cough drops before the music starts; and to try not to clap between movements, but to not feel guilty or embarrassed if we feel like doing so.

Gavin Borchert

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