Wednesday, January 13, 2010

First concert of 2010

Concert last night, hooray for a half-price special!
Haydn, Strauss, a Canadian composer name Staniland. Staniland kept the percussionists busy with little chimes and dings, not sure if it was supposed to be representative of ice, but bits were quite pretty. The Haydn was so nice I almost drifted off to sleep. The concert featured the OSM Standard Life grand prize winner, Jan Lisiecki on piano performing Chopin. He was remarkable, and he's 14! He walked out on to the stage, gangly and smiling, and blew the audience away. He's already won several competitions and it was incredible to watch his fingers flying over the keys and imagining what his life has in store for him. We are all full of potential, but it always amazes me when I see people who have accomplished so much at so young an age. It makes me wonder that if we were able to find the thing that makes our hearts sing at age 5, would we all be these incredible creatures?
There were two old ladies sitting next to me last night and their commentary and conversation between the music was annoying and amusing. They seem to go to just about every "cultural" event in town, and were both trying to sound so bored about it. They were debating quietly about whether the Strauss was any good, but the orchestra was playing Haydn and hadn't gotten to the Strauss yet. Why would you even go to a concert if you feel like that? You could just stay home and watch American Idol.
I don't know a lot about classical music, but I love watching the orchestra. I love seeing how they sit while they play their instruments, how they carefully put them down and pick them up, how some of them are so animated and others barely move, watching the horns clear their spit valves, and the percussionists! They stand quietly at the back and then explode, and then wait and wait, I don't know how they have the patience. How can you stand there with a cymbal in each hand and not bang them together compulsively like one of those wind-up monkeys?
I think there may be a reason why I was never in band......

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