John Harbison on Koussevitzky Said:

CLASSICAL MUSIC/99.5 Backstage With Brian Bell

A production of  

For the 75th anniversary of Tanglewood, the Boston Symphony Orchestra commissioned John Harbison to write a new work. Harbison chose to write his work in honor of Serge Koussevitzky, the music director of the BSO at the time Tanglewood was founded, using words the conductor himself spoke. Harbison's piece is called Koussevitzky Said:, Choral Scherzo with Orchestra.

Harbison talks with Brian Bell about the reasons for honoring Koussevitzky and the connection to words spoken by the conductor.

Here are excerpts from the text:

"The next Beethoven will from Colorado come."

"I will keep playing this music -- until you hear it."

"If not in tune, it smells of office, as if price five cents."

"You have to portray the music correctly; play it from your hearts."

"Let's do it together for our own satisfaction."