Standing ovation for Salonen from San Francisco Symphony players

esa-pekka salonen acknowledges orchestra’s standing ovation at Disney Hall
photo courtesy brian lauritzen

An unusual scene on view by a quick-witted photographer taken at curtain call after a concert by San Francisco Symphony conducted by Esa-Pekka Salonen — this moment coming only days after his startling announcement that at the completion of his five-year contract, in June 2025, he would depart his post. Concurrent to the announcement was a southern California tour March 20 – 22. In a Facebook post, USC classical music on-air talent Brian Lauritzen, who grabbed photo, described the scene;

Esa-Pekka Salonen and the SF Symphony Musicians brought the house down last night at Walt Disney Concert Hall. A blistering, defiant performance of John Adams’ “Naive and Sentimental Music”, written for the LA Phil and dedicated to Esa-Pekka, the title just a coincidence not a commentary. During the curtain calls, something I’ve never seen before: as E-P came back on stage, each member of the orchestra set their instrument down and joined the standing ovation in the hall. Solidarity always, and a reminder that an orchestra is, first and foremost, always and forever, its musicians and its music director. Management and boards would do well to remember this.

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