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La Scena Musicale - Vol. 5, No. 3

Jonathan Crow, Early Success

by Wah Keung Chan / November 1, 1999

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Few instrumentalists have won their first professional orchestra job with Canada's top group in their first post-university audition. "I did it just for the experience," said 24-year-old violinist Jonathan Crow. The star pupil of the McGill Music Faculty accomplished this rare feat two years ago, when he competed for the position of associate principal violin with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra. "I think it was a lot of luck. It was a very nerve-racking experience. I had done a lot of concerts, and I made sure I approached it like a concert." A year and a half later, in his second professional audition, Crow won the associate concert-master position. The repertoire was different - solos from Rimsky-Korsakov's Sheherazade and Richard Strauss's Ein heldenlieben were requested. "I find it harder to play behind a screen environment. You can't see the audience and react to them. Performing in public for me is the easiest, because the audience is not there to judge you." How has this unexpected turn affected his life? "I had imagined myself studying for a master's in the US. It means that I get to stay in this great city, with the great orchestra and opportunities to perform chamber music," said Crow. As for his solo career, he adds, "I would like to play in about 10 solo concerts a year."

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