Ben's Open Road

  • INTERVIEWED BY:

    The Original Roadtrip

  • INTERVIEW LOCATION:

    Boston, MA

  • AIRED ON:

    Public Television: The Original Roadtrip

  • ON DVD:

BEN ZANDER

Music Conductor
Boston Philharmonic

“Don’t look around wondering whether you’re better or worse than the next person because it’s not about that—it’s about what you want to do.”

INTERESTS:

Music Writing

THEMES DISCUSSED:

Dedication Determination Experience Exploration Fulfillment Negativity

FOUNDATION:

Being Creative

TAGS:

arts festival, comparing yourself, composition, discouragement, Europe, travel

BIOGRAPHY:

  • Wrote his first compositions when he was nine years old; his mother entered them into his town’s annual art festival.
  • One of the festival judges said his compositions were so bad, he should never write music again.
  • Undeterred, his mother sent the music to renowned composer Benjamin Britten, who invited Zander to come study with him.
  • Studied cello; at age 12, was youngest member of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain.
  • After taking five years off and traveling Europe as a “vagabond,” returned to university, studied literature.
  • Came to the U.S. to do graduate work at Harvard and Brandeis Universities.
  • Conducts the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra and Boston Philharmonic Youth Orchestra.
  • Nominated for Grammy for “Best Orchestral Performance” in 2010.

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