And the symphony must go on

Thursday evening, as the 80-odd musicians of the Eastern Connecticut Symphony Orchestra arrived at the Garde Arts Center in New London for rehearsal, many brought their overnight bags along with their violins.

"These are interesting times," said conductor Toshi Shimada.

Saturday's 8 p.m. concert "will go on, have no fear," pledged ECSO Executive Director Isabelle Singer on the office answering machine. But exactly what will be performed is still as hazy as a blizzard's white-out.

The guest soloist for the concert, violinist David Halen, is the concertmaster of the St. Louis Symphony, and he was planning to fly into Providence today. Shimada says Halen has pledged that he'll make it, but just in case, some extra time has been scheduled Saturday to rehearse a substitute for the Bernstein Serenade Halen was to perform.

So the show will go on. ECSO members checked into the new Holiday Inn - formerly the Radisson Hotel on Gov. Winthrop Boulevard - Thursday, the symphonies by Beethoven and Nielsen were rehearsed again that night, and if someone sees a man with a violin hitchhiking down Interstate 95, give him a lift.

- Milton Moore

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