27. July 2009 · 2 comments · Categories: Ramble

… classical music (Mahler this time!) is being used to keep the riff-raff away.

THE use of classical music to make people feel safer and deter graffiti artists, could be rolled out across Dartford.

Music by composer Mahler is currently played on repeat in the Princes Tunnel in Central Park.

Leader of Dartford Council Jeremy Kite says that since the tunnel was reopened with the music in March, there has been a marked decrease in graffiti there.

He says that people feel safer, enjoy the music, and that he has instructed council officers into looking at introducing the idea elsewhere.

Cllr Kite said: “It’s worked really well so far.

“It’s my hunch that young people creating graffiti don’t find it cool to be surrounded by classical music.

“They can’t show off and invite their friends to see it.

“They don’t want to stay there.”

However playing music to stop people daubing graffiti is not a novel idea.

Classical music is played in town centre subways in Blackburn and Burnley, to discourage youths from hanging around there.

And Co-op stores, in Perry Street and Dene Holm Road, Northfleet, ran a similar scheme in 2005 by installing loudspeakers playing classical music outside.

It was such a success staff felt they did not need to continue the scheme.

Cllr Kite said: “We don’t want to give the impression this is a negative thing, people enjoy having music around.

“People feel happy during the working day.”

Just yards away from the Princes Tunnel is a skate park which with the council’s consent, is decorated in graffiti.

News Shopper spoke to some of the skaters, who gave a mixed reaction to Cllr Kite’s plan.

Charlie Pankhurst, 25, of Northdown Road, Northfleet, said: “If it works it’s a good idea, it may stop them hanging around in certain places.

“But playing a bit of classical music isn’t going to stop the worst offenders, if they’re going to do it, they’re going to do it.”

Michael Barnett, 20, of Chastilian Road, Dartford, said: “I don’t think it’s a good idea, it’s a bit stupid.

“Music’s just music, you can’t say everyone’s going to feel the same.

“I think white noise would work.”

I read it here.

27. July 2009 · Comments Off on MQOD · Categories: Quotes

For me, Bach’s music is not only as good as music gets, but also as good as it gets, period — as good as existence, reality, life and the world.

-Andrew W. K.

Read (and heard) here.

27. July 2009 · Comments Off on Terry Teachout & The Letter · Categories: Links, Opera, Ramble

It’s scary to go out in front of a thousand people and put yourself on the line. Unless you know what it takes to do that night after night — not just in theory but in your blood and bones — your criticism is likely to be more idealistic than realistic.

The above quote is from an article by Terry Teachout. I know him via the blog About Last Night, and from there have read his reviews of theatre. Now he’s on the other side; he has written a libretto for the opera The Letter, and I’m assuming reviews will be out today for the Saturday opening night performance.

I’m curious if doing something like this opera will change the way he reviews. As he states in the article, he has been a professional musician, so perhaps he already understood the hurtfulness of a negative review. (Did he ever get reviewed, I wonder? Did he play in front of thousands? I don’t know that I’ve read much about his performing. Wanna fill us in, Terry?)

Another “must read” is his blog entry about opening night. To me it was one of the most real blog entries I’ve read … he sounded giddy and excited, much like I feel after having a very good night of performing. It made me smile.

I would have loved to have been able to get to Santa Fe. One of these years I will. But this year isn’t one for expenses like that; I’m sure everyone reading this is in the same boat. So I keep teaching, and this week I also start rehearsals for Cosi, and I’ll just have to read about The Letter … and hope that Santa Fe can post a clip if they are allowed to do such a thing.

27. July 2009 · 2 comments · Categories: Quotes

Flute’s good. I was thinking more Punk Flute. Then again, Death Oboe might be an option…