Andrew Grams was relaxing over a beer. He was taking a break from an eight-concert tour of Germany, where he was conducting a symphonic version of “Lord of the Rings” music. His phone rang. Suddenly he had a new engagement a mere week away: two concerts with the Charlotte Symphony. When you’re an ambitious 29-year-old conductor, you’re flexible. Tonight and Saturday, Grams fills in for the Charlotte Symphony’s Christof Perick, who bowed out because of an illness in his family. There’s more at stake than concerts. Perick steps down as the orchestra’s music director in 2009, and Grams’ visit adds him to the mix of potential successors. Four candidates will lead concerts next season, and others will follow. [More]