Drinks with Brett Mitchell, Music Director of Colorado Symphony

The Colorado Symphony has been going through a bit of a rebirth recently. Among their 150 yearly performances, they’ve added events to target a new, much younger crowd. This year, performances include a night alongside acclaimed banjo artist
Bela Fleck, and the score of Jurassic Park, alongside more classic selections like The Ring of Nibelung by conductor and composer Lorin Maazel. At the helm of this rebirth now is music director Brett Mitchell, who began his tenure in September of 2017. New to Denver, Brett’s led Cleveland, Houston, and Saginaw Bay in Michigan symphonies prior to heading west and landing in Denver. Brett met us at the new FNG to share more about his off-stage persona.

DSM: What’s the one item you regret throwing away or not buying?
BM: I had a little bit of an “Eat Pray Love” moment right after I turned 30 when I decided to take a trip to Japan alone. I’m a big Superman fan, and brought three designs of the S-Shield with the intent of getting it tattooed on my left delt, but never followed through. Would have been a great commemoration of my trip, and I’ve regretted not getting it ever since.

DSM: What are you always telling yourself ?
BM:
Go to bed! I’m a night owl and a workaholic, but I always try to get at least 7 hours of sleep a night. That’s tricky, because I also have a rule that I have to be up at least 3 hours before I’m in front of anyone - anything less than that, and I’m just not quite at 100%.

DSM: What is your not so secret indulgence?
BM: My dad bought me a watch when I was 7 years old to commemorate a special occasion, and I’ve been a diehard watch guy ever since. As I’ve advanced in my career, I’ve been able to buy increasingly nicer watches, partly because I spend
way more time on Hodinkee than I probably should.

DSM: What do you wear that makes you feel the most confident?
BM: There’s something about the ritual of suiting up before a concert and walking onstage wearing all black that I really love. People pay good money to come see the Colorado Symphony, and it’s not enough for us to sound good - we have to look good, too.

DSM: If you had more time, what would you do with it?
BM: Three things: 1) Run for office. 2) Act. 3)Read more.

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Learn more about Brett at www.brettmitchellconductor.com or @maestromitchell
Find the full schedule of Colorado Symphony performances at www.coloradosymphony.org

Photographed by: Noah Berg Photography, @noahbergphotography

This feature originally appeared in Denver Style Magazine Issue No. 12.  Read the full issue here.