Grounded, Yet Flying High: Conductor Rossen Milanov
Rossen Milanov is a busy man of the world. The miles he racks up, both driving and flying, are great. Just look at his schedule from now through the first week in December: the Colorado Symphony in Denver, the Fort Worth Symphony in Texas, the Princeton Symphony in New Jersey, the Latvian National Symphony in Latvia, the Orchesta Sinfonica del Principado de Asturias in Spain, the Aalborg Symphony in Denmark, and finally back home to lead Camden's Symphony in C. It's almost as though Alec Baldwin is about to come up and ask him, "What's in your wallet?"
Though, it's Milanov's work with Symphony In C that seems to keep him grounded even when he's flying high. Symphony In C is a "professional training orchestra" - one of only three in the nation - providing education and experience for students who are just attaining professional status. Symphony In C used to be the Haddonfield Symphony, a community orchestra started in the early '5os to entertain the Southern New Jersey area.
In 1987, the symphony started a small internship program. By 2000, the program eventually grew to encompass the entire 78-position orchestra. During that time, in 1992, current New York Philharmonic conductor Alan Gilbert was named music director of Haddonfield Symphony, and his intern assistant conductor would be...Rossen Milanov.
Milanov would eventually go on to become the assistant conductor, and later the associate conductor, of The Philadelphia Orchestra under both Wolfgang Sawallasch and Christoph Eschenbach, as well as the chief conductor of the Symphony Orchestra of Bulgarian National Radio in his homeland of Bulgaria.
Rossen Milanov would return to the Haddonfield Symphony as music director in 2000 to take the raw, yet high-level talent that was coming into the orchestra and turn it into the kind of professionalism that has gone on to grace such organizations as the Cleveland Orchestra, the New York Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Seattle Symphony, the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, and of course, the Philadelphia Orchestra. It was in 2007 that he, along with the orchestra, completed the long transition from community orchestra to the only professional training orchestra in the Mid-Atlantic region that provides musical performance training and career development services for musicians pursuing a career as an orchestral musician. With that came the name change from Haddonfield Symphony to the now well-known and regarded Symphony In C.
Meanwhile, Rossen continues to rack up the frequent traveler miles as Music Director of the Princeton Symphony Orchestra, and his new position as principal conductor of OSPA, the Orquesta Sinfonica del Principado de Asturias. He also continues his guest conducting stints all over the world.
Listen for Jill's conversation with Rossen Milanov and music performed by Symphony In C, on Crossover, Saturday morning, at 11:30 am on WRTI-FM, with an encore the following Friday evening at 7 pm on HD-2 and the All-Classical web stream at wrti.org.