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A little humility often calls the tune

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in Leaders & Managers,Workplace Communication

John Rutter is a renowned composer and conductor based in England. Among his compositions are large- and small-scale choral works, orchestral and instrumental pieces, two children’s operas and—written to lift himself out of mourning after his son’s death—“Mass of the Children,” which made its U.S. premiere at Carnegie Hall in 2003.

Rutter also travels extensively, conducting large choruses. Although he’s sunny in both disposition and musical inflection, he also sets rigid requirements (every chorister must come to practice with a pencil to mark the score) and usually manages to elicit a more powerful performance than even the chorus members thought possible.

Once, when Rutter was directing a chorus in Detroit, he drove the singers hard. After a fine practice, one chorister exclaimed in admiration: “You seem almost professional!”

In sheer delight, Rutter threw back his head and burst out laughing.

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