Artur Rodzinski


Artur Rodzinski


On a vacation Rodzinski noticed that there was to be a radio broadcast of an open-air concert conducted by Fabien Sevitzky and that the program included one of Rodzinski’s own specialties, ’s Fifth Symphony. Tuning in shortly after the concert had begun, Rodzinski listened to Sevitzky’s rendering with increasing respect. “How well he sustains the line!” he murmured. “Listen to that balance! He must have studied my recording.” And he ended by saying that he had done Sevitzky an injustice, that he had always thought that he had no talent but that really he was a great conductor.

At the end of the performance, instead of the expected applause there was a moment of silence. Then the announcer came on, saying that the concert had been rained out and in its place the station had played a recording of Shostakovich’s Fifth conducted by Artur Rodzinski.
Biographical Note: 

Artur Rodzinski was a conductor of opera and symphonic music, born in Spalato, Dalmatia of Polish parents. He conducted in Europe before being invited to the U.S.A. in 1925 by Leopold Stokowski to assist at the Philadelphia Orchestra. He went on to conduct the Los Angeles Philharmonic (1929–33), the Cleveland Orchestra (1933–43), the New York Philharmonic (1943–47), and the Chicago Symphony (1947–48). In 1943, Rodzinski invited Leonard Bernstein to be Assistant Conductor of the Philharmonic–Symphony Society of New York (popularly known as The New York Philharmonic). Rodzinski’s musicianship was admired, but temperamental clashes in the New York Philharmonic and the Chicago Symphony led him back to European work in his last years.