Letter: At 93 years young, symphony sounds grand

At 93 years, symphony sounds wonderful

From: Charles Baker


Something really fine, uplifting and historical happened Oct. 4 at The Commons that seems to have gone largely unheralded in the media, so I’m taking this opportunity to share some thoughts about the opening concert of the Columbus Symphony Orchestra’s 93rd season. I’m ashamed to think how long it had been since I’d been to a concert, but I won’t be missing any in the future if I can help it. The intimacy and immediacy of the music are so intense when you’re seated near the instruments.

How many other friends do you have who are 93 years old and still exciting? The first concert I ever heard was the Columbus Symphony. Dad took me when I was a child, suit and tie required for the occasion. Later, when I could drive, I took myself. Dad had gone since he was a child. When Indiana’s first symphony orchestra began performing, Prohibition and the Bartholomew County Historical Society were a year old, and the county was 101. Think of the service to the community rendered in the intervening years by volunteers sharing their talent and encouraging youths.

This year Josh Aerie begins as music director, and the first concert blew the doors off The Commons. I went to hear a young friend in her first concert, but I came away with so much more. Half a dozen of the other musicians are friends as well, and that adds to the connection to the music. I think I’m proud to know people who can come together to create something so moving as the performance of Beethoven’s Fifth was. They must have felt like they’d driven a Grand Prix. I can hardly wait for November.