MISSOULA – It’s a week of transition for the Missoula Symphony Orchestra, as they prepare to say “farewell” to popular conductor Darko Butorac.
Butorac and the symphony have been working every evening this week for “Last Best Place”, Darko’s “Farewell Concert” this weekend, capping an exhilarating 12-year stint as Music Director for the Missoula Symphony.
It’s been a dozen years filled with tremendous music and punctuated by Darko’s infectious enthusiasm for music. But he’s also left a mark by making concerts fun, and helping young fans in particular discover the spectacle that is live music.
Darko is consolidating three musical directorships into two with the weekend concerts. He’ll continue as musical director for the Tallahassee Symphony, a five year involvement, and the new position he accepted with the Asheville Symphony last fall. But he tells me he’ll always have fond memories of Montana.
“It was very strange today to see a little postcard they made which said ‘Music Director 2007-to-2019’. Can we say 12 years? It doesn’t sound as bad. When you look at this it really has been quite a long time,” he said. “And ultimately it’s been a place where I have spent most of my adult life. And we made some wonderful music together. Some really memorable concerts. I’m very proud of my musicians, with everything that we managed to accomplish together over these years.”
The final Sunday concert will be followed by a special “Celebrate” reception Sunday evening at the Doubletree Hotel.