I planted the idea for Lunch With Lawrence during a conversation with our new Maestro at a reception in the beautiful gardens of Fred and Pat Erickson on the evening of August 24, 2012. I asked, “Would you consider speaking at a dinner the evening before a concert to tell interested patrons about the program from your perspective.” He replied, “I would like to do it, however, it would conflict with our rehearsal schedule. Would you consider having me speak at a luncheon?” With that encouragement, Neal Lessenger and I explored potential venues.
The first Lunch With Lawrence was held at Zesta Cucina at noon on the Friday before the Tchaikovsky Spectacular concert on September 29, 2012. We enjoyed learning about the next evening’s program from its historical perspective and musical detail. From that beginning, the idea has taken root and flourished. Now, the guest artist usually attends and adds their perspective. These personal perspectives and in-depth discussions enhance my enjoyment of the classical concert series. I consider Lunch With Lawrence a wonderful gift from our Maestro. -Sonja and James T. Dodge Sr. MD