Bass Blog

Michael Hovnanian formerly played bass with an orchestra located in a large midwestern city.

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Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Week 43 – Ravinia 01

program A
SMITH The Star-Spangled Banner
ENESCU Romanian Rhapsody in A Major, Op. 11, No. 1
SIBELIUS Violin Concerto in D Minor, Op. 47
BEETHOVEN Symphony No. 7 in A Major, Op. 92
Leonard Slatkin conductor
Joshua Bell violin

program B
RACHMANINOV Vocalise, Op. 34, No. 14
RACHMANINOV Symphonic Dances, Op. 45
RACHMANINOV Piano Concerto No. 3 in D Minor, Op. 30
Leonard Slatkin conductor
Denis Matsuev piano


11-1:30 2:30-5 rehearsals

2:30-5 rehearsal
8 concert (A)

2:30-5 rehearsal
8 concert (B)




This is where the pro forma statement about how nice it is to be back belongs.

Welz Kaufman’s welcoming remarks to the orchestra were brief enough that anyone blinking (or stifling a yawn) surely missed them. He left the official pleasantries to the chairperson of the Ravinia board who greeted us graciously. The usual offering of cake prompted the usual grumbling about the quality of the cake. Apparently in the ‘old days’ even free cake tasted better than it does today.

Once again, the white jacket failed to make it to the cleaners before the start of Ravinia. Its predecessor was discarded after two decades of similar shameful neglect. In fact, ‘white’ doesn’t really do justice to the color of that garment, which by the end of its useful life took on the color (and more alarmingly, the texture) of a slice of Wonder Bread snatched from the toaster after about 30 seconds. As always, the plan to play the entire summer in the same (allegedly) white shirt is in effect, but the ever-shrinking Ravinia season makes this hardly an accomplishment worth boasting about any more.


Jacque said...

Ah, a paragraph inspired by the tale of Jason Heath's white jacket!

Michael Hovnanian said...

Sorry, never saw that one...

nocynic said...

not a word about the concerts...given the utterly forgettable quality of our summer readings, this is perhaps as it should be.

Michael Hovnanian said...

Concerts? The best thing about this past week was the sunset Friday evening. Rachmaninoff 3rd and Beethoven 7th? Our summer season programmers are moving to the right faster than John McCain.