Difference between revisions of "RanTom Thoughts/20050717 Van Cliburn Classicals!"

From Wikitheus
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Line 1: Line 1:
==[[RanTom Thoughts/20050717 Van Cliburn Classicals!|Van Cliburn Classicals!]]==
Heck of a job there, it asboltuely helps me out.
<noinclude>[[Category:RanTom Thoughts]]</noinclude>
(hrmn.. just not the same as 'rocks')
<includeonly>[[Image:2005-07-17@01-12-32_VanCliburn.jpg|thumb|right|Van Cliburn]]
</includeonly>Let's see, I could rant about not being able to go to the [http://www.nv.doe.gov/nts/default.htm Nevada Test Site] for my project due to not getting clearance, but I won't.  Today's entry isn't going to be a rant at all *gasp*.  <noinclude>Because I wasn't able to go to NV this week, I was able to go to a concert I'd really wanted to go to this weekend.  So today's [[RanTom Thoughts]] will be about that instead.
First, some background.  When I was a kid, I had [http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/B000003EUG/ref=wl_it_dp/103-9215590-1583856 this record] of Tchaikovsky: Concerto No. 1 / Rachmaninoff: Concerto No. 2 that we found at a thrift store one day.  It was my favorite record in our entire collection.  I would listen to it over and over and over and over and over and... well, over again :)  That record was responsible for my love of Tchaikovsky.  One of my goals in life at the time was to hear the pianist in concert.  (*HINT*  The CD is on my [http://amazon.com/gp/registry/866XSZSD965A wish list] right now for anyone who is still wanting to send a graduation present.)
Well, after I moved I couldn't remember who the pianist was.  (I'm terrible with remembering names.)  but I heard another song of his on the radio and instantly recognized his style.  I found out it was [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Van_Cliburn Van Cliburn], looked it up on the web and yep, that was the record I'd had as a kid.  (Apparently a LOT of other people had it too, it was the first classical recording to go Platinum.)</noinclude>
<noinclude>[[Image:2005-07-16@23-10-27_VanCliburn_Lawn_tn.jpg|thumb|right|The Lawn Crowd]]
</noinclude>This weekend at [http://www.ravinia.org/ Ravinia], Van Cliburn was going to be back, 30 years since his last appearance there.  Alas, I was going to miss it due to this project in Nevada.  However, when my clearance didn't come through, I was finally able to make it.  I have to say, it more than made up for the disappointment of not being able to go to the Nevada Test Site.<noinclude>  Ravinia has 3 levels of seating.  Two for $50/$75 in the covered amphitheater and $10 for the lawn surrounding it.  The lawn doesn't have a direct view onto the stage, so you get two types of people coming to Ravinia concerts.  Those who wish to see and be seen (monkey suit types) who buy the $75 tickets, and those who go just to hear good live music buy lawn tickets.
[[Image:2005-07-16@23-17-10_VanCliburn_Picnic.jpg|thumb|left|135px|Having a picnic]]
People out on the lawn bring games, wine, food, candles, etc.. it's like a huge community picnic before the concert starts.  Now some of my friends would despise lawn-goers, but personally, I like the experience of the lawn better.  It's more 'earthy', which is more my style.  This concert had a 4th level of people who paid $600 for the gala dinner afterwards. Way out of my price range, thankyouverymuch.
[[Image:2005-07-16@23-12-13_VanCliburn_MyView.jpg|thumb|right|My view at the beginning of the concert]]
Part of the Ravinia experience for many lawn-goers is taking the [http://www.metrarail.com/ Metra] to the event.  There's a Metra stop right at the gate of the park, with a special Metra train that leaves the station 15 minutes after the concert ends.  It's fun being on the train-ride back, with everyone talking about the concert we were all just attending.  I arrived 2 hours early so I could grab some lunch / dinner at the park.  (The one downside of my evening, a $9 chicken garlic sandwich that was so dry I couldn't swallow it and the bread was hard as a rock.)  I found a tree fairly close to the amphitheater and read a book.  (''[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vitals Vitals]'' by [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greg_Bear Greg Bear])
[[Image:2005-07-17@00-51-19_VanCliburn_Ampitheater.jpg|thumb|left|The Ravinia amphitheater]]
Eventually, the concert started and the first three parts are 'just' the [http://cso.org CSO] playing superbly (although pops-esque stuff).  (Schubert's ''Overture to Rosamunde'', Ponchielli's ''Dance of the Hours'', and Rossini's ''William Tell Overture''.)  A few early cicadas and other insects were out contributing to the score.  (Part of the appeal to outdoor classical concerts to me.  I like the confluence of nature and music on a nice summer day.)
[[Image:2005-07-17@00-50-30_VanCliburn_TheGathering.jpg|thumb|right|The Gathering around the ampitheater]]
At this point, a large portion of the lawn audience started getting up and drifting over to the amphitheater to stand around the outside and look down to the stage.  Of course I joined them :D  When Van Cliburn came on stage there was a huge round of applause, but it was nothing compared to what would come later.
I slowly drifted forward along the side and eventually had a better view than 3/4 of the people in the actual seats.  (1/2 of them couldn't see his hands and I was about 1/2 way up on the side that could see them.)  They played Grieg's Piano Concerto in A Minor, Op. 16, which has some excellent places to showcase his mastery of the ivory.  I'd never seen a video of him playing before, but he played exactly as I'd imagined he would, with the energy and kinetic motion you'd expect from how his recordings sound.  I was in heaven, finally seeing the hands that had given me countless hours of enjoyment as a kid.  (With an impromptu performance by a car alarm in the middle of the performance.)
When it ended, the applause was deafening.  I think we were all trying to thank him for all of our cumulative hours of musical enjoyment he'd given us over the last 40 years.  He did I think 9 curtain calls and 3 encores, finishing up with Rachmaninoff: Concerto No. 2, to which the audience (even the black suits) burst out in a huge round of applause as soon as we heard the first bars.  (I was so happy :D )  I had that stuck in my head the whole 3 hour trip back home :)  The concert was everything I expected and more.  To think that I could have been in the middle of the desert instead.
<includeonly>[[RanTom Thoughts/20050717 Van Cliburn Classicals!|more >>]]
</includeonly>--[[Image:Tometheus-sig.png]] [[User:Tometheus|Tometheus]] <small>([[User_talk:Tometheus|talk]])</small> 19:17, 17 July 2005 (UTC)<noinclude>
[[Image:2005-07-17@01-12-32_VanCliburn.jpg|thumb|center|662px|Van Cliburn's performance from my final vantage point]]

Revision as of 01:58, 10 July 2011

Heck of a job there, it asboltuely helps me out.