Until I turned to conducting, I was a principal player in the Montreal Symphony — one of 100 highly skilled musicians performing a constant round of programmes of great music for capacity audiences in the 3,000-seat concert hall of Place des Arts.
On occasion, I would need to carry my instrument with me. The tuba often seemed to attract attention. Spotting the instrument, concertgoers leaving the hall would invariably smile, say hello, and add something about how they had enjoyed the evening’s programme. The personal human contact transcended the distance between audience and artists which tends to prevail in a concert hall.
I then resolved that, if ever I had his own orchestra, I wanted to establish that feeling of warm, personal human interaction with every member of the audience.
Thence originated the warm, personal “human touch” character of Tokyo Sinfonia performances that our audiences love. That our players love. The rest is history.