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BPO Apprentice Gets Bravos For Playing Badly

Tosca

By Mary Kunz Goldman

Matthew Tosca, the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra's new Mannes College apprentice conductor, recently got good news and bad news. That is he pictured above.

The good news: He is making a high-profile appearance at Kleinhans Music Hall this weekend. 

The bad news: He has to play atrociously!

The BPO is presenting "Mozart and Salieri," a 45-minute mini-opera by the Russian Romantic composer Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. Long story short, they need someone who can walk on stage with a violin and pretty much murder a Mozart aria.

As BPO Music Director JoAnn Falletta explained: "Matthew is a very fine violinist but will have to deliberately play 'badly' as an untrained street musician."

Which is what the junior maestro did, on Friday morning for the Coffee Concert. He walked out with a fiddle and played "Batti, Batti," from Mozart's "Don Giovanni," horribly and screechingly. Bravo!

Saturday night, he gets to reprise his performance.

With luck, it will be even worse!

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