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Two Greensboro Orchestra Conductors Talk About Their Longtime Friendship

From the Greensboro News & Record

Fans of the Greensboro Symphony Orchestra and Eastern Music Festival: Have you missed their live performances during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Here's one way to connect.

Watch and listen on YouTube as Music Director Dmitry Sitkovetsky interviews EMF Music Director Gerard Schwarz about their longtime friendship.

It's part of the weekly Sitkovetsky & Friends Virtual series sponsored by Rice Toyota, which also sponsors the Greensboro Symphony chamber concerts. Click here to watch.

Sitkovetsky, a world-renowned violinist who also conducts the Greensboro Symphony, speaks from his home in London.

Schwarz is in Miami, where he teaches at the Frost School of Music and serves as music director of the Frost Symphony Orchestra and Palm Beach Symphony.

In New York, Schwarz leads the All-Star Orchestra and Mozart Orchestra of New York. He is conductor laureate of the Seattle Symphony and conductor emeritus of the Mostly Mozart Festival.

During most summers, Schwarz can be found in Greensboro leading the artistic side of EMF, which provides training for young musicians and concerts for the public.

But COVID-19 canceled EMF's in-person programs this summer. It will return in 2021.

In the YouTube interview, the two conductors talk about their friendship of 43 years, and how their paths have crossed over time.

Sitkovetsky asks Schwarz about how he began his musical career by playing trumpet. And they discuss COVID-19 and its impact on them and on young music students, who try to stay motivated and positive while anxious to get back to playing.

Schwarz himself contracted the virus in March, but recovered.

"Live goes on," Schwarz says.

"Life goes on," Sitkovetsky agrees. "And the music will be there."

Sitkovetsky and Schwarz are scheduled to appear together on April 29 at the new downtown Steven Tanger Center for the Performing Arts.

In a program titled "Maestros and Mendelssohn," Sitkovetsky will both perform on violin and conduct. Schwarz will serve as guest conductor.

For ticket information, go online to

Click here to read the full article by Dawn DeCwikiel-Kane on the Greensboro News & Record website.


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