Maestro Picks – Jung-Ho Pak’s Music Selections – Week 8

Artistic Director and Conductor for the Cape Symphony Jung-Ho Pak has worked with world class artists like Yo-Yo Ma and James Taylor, and has conducted orchestras around the world.

He thinks that every person deserves a chance at experiencing beauty and joy. He thinks that a symphony can be as loved as a pennant winning baseball team, as customer oriented as a first class hotel, as fun as a giant amusement park, and as entrepreneurial as a high tech, start-up company. And he thinks that audiences want one thing: to experience something unforgettable.

Have you ever wondered what a Maestro listens to to prepare for upcoming performances? Jung-Ho Pak has shared some of his picks for his upcoming performances!

Maestro Pick:

Rome and Juliet by Sergei Prokofiev
Performed by Margot Fonteyn and Rudolf Nureyev

Although at one point in my varied career I was Music Director with a ballet company, I had never truly understood the essence of ballet, or dance for that matter, until I saw this performance. I had thought that ballet was full of mannerism and was incapable of true human emotion, but this performance of Dame Fonteyn proves otherwise. Never mind that she was a much older woman than Nureyev, or that she defied the physical limitations by dancing so brilliantly well beyond what most dancers would dare (she was around 47 here), she transformed herself into a young teenager in the most miraculous way. Of course, having the indescribably luscious music of Prokofiev helps!

Maestro Pick:

Shirley Temple and Bill “Bojangles” Robinson tap dancing.

I’m sharing this not only because these are miraculous performances, but these are two extraordinary people. Beyond her ability to perform naturally and to dance exceptionally, the way Temple handled her post-Hollywood career with such grace is rivaled only by Audrey. The fact that she avoided the typical tragic story of a child star “gone bad” and became a US Ambassador (and model survivor of breast cancer) is truly remarkable. Robinson is also notable for being a Civil Rights activist who broke the color barrier many times. His influence in the acceptance of tap dancing as a beloved American art form is still felt today.

Maestro Pick:

Time of Your Life by Green Day

It’s amazing that a band with such a punk exterior achieved another different kind of fame in the world of musical theater with their hit, American Idiot. Though they’re hyper stage energy is a trademark, their sound is surprisingly intelligible and meaningful. It’s no wonder that their songs are known for substance. This popular song has a philosophical quality, evocative of Bob Dylan or Simon and Garfunkle.

For More Information on the Cape Symphony

For more information, please visit the Cape Symphony’s page for upcoming performances, tickets and additional information!

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