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Dallas Symphony Orchestra Rounds Out All-Star Roster with New President Bill Lively

New DSO president Bill Lively leaves it all on the field.
New DSO president Bill Lively leaves it all on the field.
Photos by Patrick Michels

Fans of music and mimosas huddled up in the Meyerson Symphony Center foyer for a very special mystery announcement this morning -- and with Roger Staubach and Mayor Tom Leppert slated to make an appearance, and with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra still short a CEO, you could guess where this one was going.

The honors, though, were saved for Dallas Symphony Orchestra maestro Jaap van Zweden, who beamed in to announce from a TV screen that Super Bowl XLV host committee president Bill Lively would be suiting up as the DSO's new president and CEO this spring.

DSO's interim president and back-to-COO Paul Stewart and board chairman Ron Gafford helped stir the sports metaphors, the former announcing they'd found a "franchise quarterback, like a Roger Staubach," and the latter riffing on having found a teammate for Van Zweden, "who is literally our shot heard round the world."

Staubach related how he'd made such a clutch completion connecting Lively with the DSO, calling it "one of the best things that's happened to me....You're a lucky group to have such a great man."

Then, in the feel-good moment of the morning, Staubach closed his remarks with a feigned sort of fumble, introducing "Senator Leppert," and sending the crowd wild with laughter as Ron Natinsky looked on, Rudy-like, from the sidelines.

Leppert said this was no lateral for the DSO -- "Bill's gonna take all of these skills that he's acquired, and he's gonna elevate it," Leppert said.

Lively emerged from the tunnel behind the podium to hearty handshakes and double-clutches from the speakers, before telling the audience what an honor the new gig was, calling it a return to his musical roots, and saying he'd be getting started this spring, once Super Bowl cleanup had wrapped.

"Dallas is emerging to be a cultural giant," Lively said. "What happens in this building with this orchestra can redefine how we define Dallas."

Roger Staubach helped everyone involved hit a home run for tangled sports-related metaphors.
Roger Staubach helped everyone involved hit a home run for tangled sports-related metaphors.
Leppert thanks Staubach for the campaign plug.
Leppert thanks Staubach for the campaign plug.
Jaap van Zweden made the big announcement, and issued his demands, remotely from his lair.
Jaap van Zweden made the big announcement, and issued his demands, remotely from his lair.
Lively is greeted by Leppert and his other biggest fans.
Lively is greeted by Leppert and his other biggest fans.
That "Senator Leppert" joke hung around in the air for a while after Staubach made it.
That "Senator Leppert" joke hung around in the air for a while after Staubach made it.
This guy saw it hanging up there too.
This guy saw it hanging up there too.

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