No. 118 (essentialsaltes) wrote,
No. 118

Artistic Consumption

Last Tuesday, Uzbeki pianist Behzod Abduraimov tore the cover off Rachmaninoff's Third Piano Concerto at the Hollywood Bowl. I can't say that I know the piece that well, but I agree with the LA Times' glowing (and better informed) view. The Times may be a little harsh on the Pictures at an Exhibition.


It was a great experience, and was our first time sitting in the boxes, which definitely had a different vibe. For one thing, the boxes seat 4 or 6, so we had an musician-cum-astrodynamics programmer in town from Colorado Springs for a wedding in SoCal in the box with us. And we also chatted some with the family in the next box, doing a bit more socializing than is usual up in the benches.

Saturday, we went to the Leimert Park Book Fair. Steve Barnes and his wife Tananarive Due had a quick panel on 'Afrofuturism' with two other authors, Deborah Pratt of Quantum Leap fame, and Jodi Baker, a bubbly person with a YA series. Barnes had a good point about the snowflakes upset about 'their history' being torn down -- African Americans are commonly told to forget all about the past history of injustice and focus on the now. (Not to mention the African history and culture that may have been lost from their ancestors).

In the evening it was back to the Bowl for Tchaikovsky & Fireworks. Bramwell Tovey conducted, and he brought more of the talkative and humorous style that John Mauceri used to bring to the Bowl. They performed some works unfamiliar to me, which was interesting, since the program had been pretty set in years past. Some bits of opera and ballet, with the waltz from the Nutcracker Suite being a highlight, along with some music from Sleeping Beauty with a violin soloist. Although it didn't do much for me except in some nice passages, the Rococo Variations certainly demonstrated virtuosity on the cello. And then, of course, the 1812 overture -- with fireworks. Beautiful colors, beautifully orchestrated with the music, a really fine spectacular. The only down point, some of our nearby audience members. Dude, is your conversation world-class? Because that lady up there is giving a world-class performance and you're not paying attention (and you're distracting me). Chit-chat, camera chimes, crunching snack bags... I think the lure of fireworks brings out a different crowd.
Tags: book, la, music

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