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  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett

 

Adrian A. Smith

b. Kingston-upon-Hull, 28 October 1931

d. Huddersfield, 6 December 2005

Contributions from
John Quinn
Paul Serotsky
Sir Malcolm Arnold, CBE
Arthur Butterworth MBE
Mathew Curtis
Keith Llewellyn
Elaine Carter
Marilyn and Dick Myers, Edgewood Symphony Orchestra
Stuart Marsden, SPO Trumpeter

From Marilyn and Dick Myers, Edgewood Symphony Orchestra -

Maestro Adrian Smith made ripples in musical circles, even on the "other" side of the Atlantic Ocean. In 1991, Adrian was a guest conductor of the Edgewood Symphony, located in Pittsburgh, PA. Our members greatly enjoyed Adrian, his quick wit and sense of humor as well as his conducting style. Adrian felt that the sense and sweep of the music was most important, not the individual notes.

When some of our players complained that his tempo, though right for the piece, was too fast for some of us, he said with a sly Adrian grin, "I have no respect at all for human frailty." And, you’ve guessed it, we managed to play (mostly) the piece at his tempo, and it was great. The few missing notes were more than compensated for by the energy.

One of the high points of our musical life was getting to play under Adrian, in the back of the second violin section, for the performance of Mahler’s 3rd Symphony in Huddersfield Town Hall. At the end of the final movement, Marilyn was moved to tears, to the point that the notes were swimming. She felt embarrassed because she had no handkerchief, but Adrian approved: "That’s what’s supposed to happen," he said.

Another high point in our visit was one of the after-rehearsals, when we visited a local establishment* with Adrian and some of the SPO players. Dick was quite taken with his draught of Enoch’s Hammer. We suspect that the friendly and companionable way that two American Pittsburghers were treated was due at least in part to the tone set by Adrian during his long tenure.

* According to Stuart Marsden, this was a pub called The Sair, one of seven in Huddersfield that brews its own beer [Paul Serotsky]



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