23. March 2010 · 2 comments · Categories: Oboe

… and 1/2 size too small for me. Too bad, eh? Because the shoes are 56% off. Which means they are “only” $260.


Not sure how long this link this will be up, since they only have that one pair left.

Eric Whitacre is one of the names that I started to hear when Kelsey, our daughter, was in high school. She was singing in the choir, and if I’m remembering correctly they did something of his … maybe he was even there at some point? (Kelsey, what IS the story?) I think they were doing some of his music from Paradise Lost and I seem to recall it may have involved an expensive trip somewhere. Then again, I could have dreamed that up. Yes, I really do that!

But Eric Whitacre put together a virtual choir, having singers send in their video and then piecing it all together. He even awarded some of them their own solos. I find it very clever.

Lux Aurumque:

Maybe he’ll write something for a double reed choir and reeders here can “meet” on YouTube.

Hey … it could happen! 🙂


“How We Did It”

23. March 2010 · Comments Off on The Vienna Phil Goes All Girlie On Us · Categories: News

… well, okay … not really:

The Vienna Philharmonic, one of the oldest and most venerated orchestras in the world, has permanently appointed its first woman concertmaster.

Albena Danailova has been acting concertmaster since September 2008, making her the first woman ever in that position with the orchestra. The Bulgarian-born musician had been promoted from first violin — she was also the first woman ever to hold that job.

The world famous ensemble announced Saturday that she now has the concertmaster position after passing probation.

Established in 1842, the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra was an all-male ensemble until the 1980s when women started joining its ranks.

Read more

A particularly delightful aspect of this evening was the apparent comeback of what was once utterly taboo in the classical music world: Clapping between movements.

Ten years ago clapping between movements would get you glared out of the building. But more and more audiences — either through enlightenment or simply not knowing any better — have brought back this original, historically correct way to show appreciation (classical musicians love it).

I read it here. As far as the “classical musicians love it” … well … it depends. Some do. Some don’t. I’ve found that the younger ones actually are more annoyed by the applause than some of us older folk. I enjoy it when it’s that spontaneous, just can’t help ourselves sort of applause. I don’t like it when it disrupts the mood.

Other people have jumped into this a bit. Some like it. Some don’t. Some don’t say.

Eric Edberg
Elaine Fine
Lou Harry
Charles Noble
Tim Smith

As I wrote at Eric Edberg’s site:

I’m fine with applause after an exciting movement that simply calls for it. It really is spontaneous sometimes, and that sort of thing shouldn’t be denied (in my little opinion). At the same time, there are movements that call for a response of absolutely awe and silence. I think most audience members would sense that, although not all.

Currently the hushing and horrified looks that come when some poor unknowing (or knowing) soul applauds is as bothersome as applause at the wrong time … or maybe even more bothersome.

Alex Ross started it. Here’s a link to the PDF full text.

So how do you feel about the issue? Do you care?

Need some applause right now? I know I could use some!

23. March 2010 · Comments Off on MQOD · Categories: Quotes

The truth is, classical music is just like hockey. It’s much better to see it live.
-Jeremy Swist

(What preceded that, “but there were only four or five college-aged audience members.” was sad sad sad. Sigh.)

I read it here.

… and I don’t know who the someone is and I’m too lazy to check. So you can just go here to read the whole thing. But this is the end (because, well, you know how we are these days; we like to get to the end, and get there quickly.)


I’m still desperate to understand. I love Debussy, and Chopin, and minimalism (Glass, Reich, Adams). I like Renaissance choral and vocal stuff (Tallis, Byrd, Dowland). I like Tchaikovsky. I love Bach. I’m getting into Sibelius. I sung Beethoven with the Oxford Uni Student Chorus and the OUSU last week, and I sort of clicked with it. I feel like I’m getting there.

But whenever I put on something like Hendrix or Gravediggaz or The Byrds or Link Wray or Primal Scream or Of Montreal it just sounds so much more me.

Is this the pinnacle of solipsism? Or is pop music just better?

So anyone out there wanna answer him/her?

For the record, I like milk chocolate more than dark chocolate. I like Prokofiev much more than Franck. I like flats more than heels. That doesn’t necessarily make what I like better for everyone … or does it?

23. March 2010 · Comments Off on TQOD · Categories: TQOD

lots of practicing tonight. that oboe solo’s not going to learn itself (though I wish it would)!

23. March 2010 · Comments Off on My Current Favorite Commercial · Categories: TV

… sadly not here in the United States.