I arrived yesterday in St. Petersburg by train, and last night I already took a conducting lesson from my old conducting teacher Leonid Korchmar at the St. Petersburg Conservatory. I have to prepare Rachmaninov's 2nd symphony for the Evgeny Svetlanov Conducting Competition in Luxembourg, and I really have had no time to study the score, so I really need "professional help" to make the most of my time. I had a great lesson on the first movement, and this morning I had another one on the second movement. Tonight I will try a little bit of the third as well, if there is time after the official conservatory students have had their lessons.

St Petersburg poster

On the way back to my place (thanks, Seryozha for accommodating me for this week!!!) I saw a huge poster of my concert at the Nordic Music festival in the Metro. There was a big picture of my soloist, Kari Kriikku, and his name on "dog-size" letters and after that it said "the most famous clarinetist of Finland". My name was there also - in small print after the program on the right side of the poster...

SP Filarmonia poster

The following day I met briefly with one of the festival organizers. She assured me that the poster at the Philharmonic Hall has my name on the top and the soloist below because I am actually better known in St. Petersburg than Kriikku! She had even met some people who remembered my first concert in SP four years ago.