THE SELECTION of Leslie Dunner as the music director of the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra has been cheered by many of its players. And for good reason.
Mr. Dunner is a multitalented maestro who has much to offer Maryland's musical community. He is not only a first-rate conductor but a globe-trotting clarinetist and composer as well. The region's music lovers saw Mr. Dunner in an impressive performance last February as one of four finalists (from among 278 applicants) for the ASO job. He won the musicians' admiration with his level-headed flexibility after the concert's scheduled soprano fell ill and had to be replaced on short notice. Concert-goers also heard one of his own compositions as the opening number of the tryout.
Mr. Dunner has conducted symphonic, ballet and opera performances around the world -- from England and Russia to South Africa and South America.
For the past 10 years, he's been the resident conductor of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, where he directs classical subscription, pops, educational and young people's concerts.
He is also music director for the Detroit Symphony Civic Orchestra, a training ground for aspiring musicians.
The Annapolis Symphony Orchestra has come a long way since its founding in 1962. It has steadily grown in professionalism, ambition and sophistication.
Since the departure in 1996 of Gisele Ben-Dor, the regional orchestra has been without a permanent conductor. Having a revolving door of guest conductors is fun -- to a point. But after two years, the orchestra needs a steady guiding hand.
Mr. Dunner will take his post June 1. Because of previous commitments, however, he is not expected to do most of the ASO conducting until the following season. His arrival is eagerly awaited.
Pub Date: 4/07/98