SAGE ADVICE FROM Esa-Pekka Salonen on what it takes to be a great conductor. Some of his thoughts are predictable, but here’s the key bit for musicians:
You have to train as a conductor to be one. Get into one of the conducting classes at a college or a music academy. Even before you do that, the best education for someone who wants to become a conductor is to sit in rehearsals. That’s where you learn.
A concert is just a concert, that is when we deliver what we achieved in rehearsals. To know how to get to that point you have to witness the process.
I think he’s right. Sitting in on rehearsals is invaluable because you start to develop an ear for what needs to be fixed and how to best fix it.