Slatkin Remembers Hayman

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Leonard Slatkin sent the following anecdote about his longtime friend and associate Richard Hayman, who passed away Wednesday morning:

“One memorable evening, Richard and I had concocted a bit of shtick for a concert at Queeny park. The Liszt First Piano concerto was on the program and just before the performance, he came on stage with his arm in a sling. The ‘injury’ took place backstage and he told the audience that he was unable to conduct the piece. I was seated at a table in the front, and Richard asked if there was anyone who could lead the piece. Before I could respond, a man near the back said he wanted to do it! This stunned us all but Richard played along and had the gentleman come on stage. After a few minutes of banter, it was clear that the guy simply wanted attention and really had no idea what the Liszt Concerto even was. Eventually, I came to the podium and did a guest stint with my own orchestra. Richard handled the whole thing with consummate skill and humor, as he did all his wonderful life. RIP my friend.”

St. Louis Symphony Conductor Laureate Leonard Slatkin in the ruffled shirt, wide-sideburns era
St. Louis Symphony Conductor Laureate Leonard Slatkin in the ruffled shirt, wide-sideburns era