Letter from Delores Rothwell
Why Is Maestro Leaving CSO?
The last Catskill Symphony Orchestra performance con-ducted by Maestro Maciej Żóltowski will be held on Saturday, May 13 in Oneonta. The question being asked by many attendees, sponsors and members is why his contract has not been renewed. The CSO has had nothing but praise for him in the local papers and yet they did not poll the musicians or CSO members regarding the board’s decision not to renew his contract. The only reason offered was that CSO would be taking a “new direction.” Why weren’t key stakeholders’ opinions considered on whether he should remain as music director of the CSO and whether they desired a new direction for the orchestra?
Maestro Żóltowski has brought new life to the CSO and a high standard of music and excellence to the performances. He has received praise from those who attended his concerts and yet the CSO board is not interested in retaining this outstanding skill to ensure their future. Certainly, no articulated reason has been given to those of us who attend, sponsor and contribute to the CSO.
I am confused as well. The Catskill Choral Society, of which I am a member, just joined the Orchestra in a wonder and well attended concert of music from the Silver Screen, to an almost packed audience. Not only is the Maestro extremely talented, but also a marvelous conductor with a wonderful sense of how to bring out the best in those he conducts. As I noted after the concert, this isn’t NY City and it’s not Carnegie Hall. To not continue this relationship is a real shame. The Board has said it wants to go in “a new direction” but I’d be hard pressed to imagine what was wrong with the former one!