Author Topic: What concerts are you looking back at?  (Read 126 times)

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Offline some guy

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What concerts are you looking back at?
« on: March 13, 2019, 09:57:00 AM »
I am listening to a live recording of a concert given in Milano in 1959. This made me wonder if a companion thread to "What concerts are you looking forward to?" would be nice.

I guess we'll find out soon enough.

I spent many happy years going to concerts and festivals in Europe, the US, and Canada--one year logging over three hundred concerts--so I will try to suppress my urge to talk about all the lovely concerts I've attended over the years.

But I will start this going with a brief reference to a few concerts that stand out for me.

The first is my first one, a Sacramento Symphony concert of Beethoven's overture to Egmont (my first hearing of this piece, too, and it bowled me over), Dvořák's piano concerto (unless it was the violin concerto), and Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition (Ravel). I had been listening to classical music at the time for about six years, on a very poor turntable and on T.V., so hearing music live like this was wildly exciting.

I'll skip a few years to the L.A. Phil's only performance of music by John Cage, the west coast premiere of his bicentennial commission, Renga, with Apartment House 1776. This was a thrilling concert, not the least because I had arranged to meet Cage before the show. He very sweetly granted me several hours of idle chit-chat and a couple of games of chess. What fun.

I clapped so hard for the music that I broke blood vessels in my hands, which has only happened one or two other times. Or three. It's not like  I'm enthusiastic or anything.

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: What concerts are you looking back at?
« Reply #1 on: March 13, 2019, 11:57:55 AM »
hindaudition is 20-20 . . .
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline DaveF

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Re: What concerts are you looking back at?
« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2019, 02:37:43 PM »
I like this idea - not simply because it leads one's thoughts back to memorable concerts (of which there are far too many to list), but also because it might lead to someone else saying "I was at that one too.  Wasn't it great!" (or alternatively, in Eric Morecambe style, "rubbish!").  But three in particular I'll never forget were:

An Albert Hall Prom, probably late '80s or early '90s, which had the Berg Chamber Concerto in part 1 and Dallapiccola Il prigionero in part 2.  Nobody, but nobody, came - I've never seen the RAH so empty.  The Dallapiccola, which I hadn't previously heard, was shattering;

A student performance of Glass's Akhnaten at Bath Spa University, probably early 2000s;

A performance of the Rachmaninoff Symphonic Dances by the BBC Welsh in Cardiff, conducted by our beloved maestro Tadaaki Otaka.  I can date this one fairly precisely to March-April 2003, since my son was in utero and was reported to be dancing vigorously.  The most thrilling performance of this piece I've ever heard - I remember the violas, in the Alleluia theme in the final dance, digging into their down-bows as though their lives were at stake.  The final cataclysmic tam-tam smash was swallowed up in a tumult of applause and cheering.

Anyone else at any of these three?
"Just because I like something, it doesn't mean it's any good."


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