Symphony Notes

Symphony Notes is Maestro Kevin Rhodes’ guest column in the Traverse City Record-Eagle. New articles appear quarterly.


May 8, 2020

A new era of ‘Rambo-style’ home production, and hope for the future

    “Planning, even in the best of times, requires a great deal of hope.

    It always has a certain stab-in-the-dark quality to it — and hope — both of which have never been stronger that right now.”


March 27, 2020

We will appreciate being together when the time comes

    “I never imagined a moment in time when it would be forbidden to come together to play and listen to live music, but that time has arrived.
    I look forward to its end.”

January 10, 2020

We are moved by Beethoven’s struggle

    “2020 is here and along with it, the 250th Anniversary of the birth of Ludwig van Beethoven, one of the greatest geniuses and humanists the world has ever known.”

Novemeber 11, 2019

“What I actually do

    ‘What do you actually do?” In the nearly 40 years since I first received a few dollars to conduct as a teenager, that is the question I’m most often asked.

August 23, 2019

TSO takes on Wagner in season opener

    Music, art and all things cultural as well as geopolitical reached a precipice in the early 20th century which resulted in World War I. Certainly the industrial revolution played a role in that event, as it also did in the creation of the figure of Richard Wagner.

April 19, 2019

Flying horses, love potions, super heroes

    For those who have not experienced the music of Wagner live, I cannot begin to describe what you’re in for. It’s not surprising that people who are otherwise not big fans of classical music are drawn to the music of Wagner.

June 29, 2018

Musical magic requires writing in pencil
Guest Columnist, Gary Gatzke, TSO Principal Bass

    Perched high on my stool, overlooking a vast sea of stringed instruments, I always wonder to myself if I might have the best seat in the house.
Symphony Notes