Now, there’s more than just money at stake here; there’s also a sort of classical-world culture clash. And Nero’s feeling like he’s not getting the respect he deserves. But does he deserve it? Nero trades in “Pops,” which is widely regarded as classical-lite, and many classical fans would argue he’s never deserved any place in the Philadelphia Orchestra system at all. And if you’ve seen Nero’s shows versus the ones the Philadelphia Orchestra puts on themselves, you know why: Nero is, God love him, about as corny as they come. And the Orchestra is, well, the real deal. That ego — and really ego alone — might be one of the things that drove the Orchestra to the brink is sad enough. That Nero’s still pursuing his case against the PhilOrch, even now, and in the face of real danger for the institution, is even sadder still, and more than a little infuriating.
Aw rats, I’m sorry to read this. Peter Nero once called me a gazelle, which I believe he meant as a compliment, in my very long hair and thinner days. He was very kind to me (I not only played in the orchestra but I was music librarian, so I dealt with him directly when he was here). I’m sorry to read that he’s suing the orchestra. That’s rotten.