Imagine two genetically identical tree seeds, planted in different locations – and then imagine them in 20 years. Do they still look identical?
No, of course not. Weather, soil, neighboring plants, animal traffic, and 1,000 other factors are distinct enough to cause slight differences that magnify over time. Even with the same starting point, they ending point is quite different.
Now think of music you’re conducting this year and have conducted before. Are the choir members the same? The size of the ensemble? The audience? Are you the same?
Again, of course not. And as with the trees, all of those factors–and many others–should influence your interpretation. You’re starting with the same germ, the music as notated, but there are vast opportunities for adjustment in tempo, articulation, textual emphasis, balance, and more.
If you are not reimagining the piece based on your current environment, you are ignoring an opportunity.
A tree grows best in a zone of conditions, but also because within that zone, it adapts perfectly what is around it.
Let the music you select adapt to its environment and grow to its ideal form.