This weekend, I am preparing to do more research next week. I have permission to observe a Minnesota Orchestra rehearsal at Orchestra Hall in which Associate Conductor Mischa Santora will work with the orchestra on the Shostakovich Symphony No. 5.
Evan Quinn will rehearse Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 8 in St. Petersburg, Russia, in novel 3 which I’m working on right now. I realized that it had been a long, long time since I’d observed a conductor rehearsing a Shostakovich symphony. More importantly for Evan, I wanted to learn what sort of musical issues conductors work on with orchestras when rehearsing a Shostakovich symphony. Is there anything unique to Shostakovich that I could have Evan focus on?
At this point in the first draft work on this novel, I see the rehearsal in St. Petersburg as pivotal for the story and for Evan emotionally. It will come at the end of the second act structurally, the moment when all appears to be lost, as they say. So, I see the Shostakovich, and Evan’s work, as a contrast as well as a complement to the moment in the story.
I’m looking forward to the rehearsal next week and am grateful for the opportunity to observe it.