08 November 2010

Going forward, exhaustedly

So the concert was a smashing success, judged by the following subjective criteria:

~ The programs were beautiful, professionally printed, with original art on the cover painted for the occasion. I like things to be just so.
~ The church looked amazing, with big white streamers hanging from the rafters, votives flickering from the organ casework, and late-afternoon sun streaming in through the stained-glass windows.
~ Standing in front of 75 talented, well-prepared musicians, singing gorgeous music, in a superb acoustic, is so. fun. I wish everyone could have a turn on the podium, baton in hand, to experience what it feels like (but then again, I'm not likely to cede that spot). Alas, it's also terrifying. There are moments when I look down at the score and see all the cues I have to give and think, wow, they should really get an adult up here to do this.
~ There were shaky moments but those don't stick in my mind, so they can't have been all that bad. Rather, I remember the perfectly blended voices of my choir singing William Beckstrand's setting of the prayer of St. Francis (Lord, make me an instrument of thy peace . . .), with the sweet solo voices of Matt and Hannah joining in from the balcony. Or the massed choir nailing entrances and cutoffs that had been an earlier source of, um, concern. Or my dear friend Jen Sylvester, she of the impossibly perfect soprano, singing the Pie Jesu better than I've ever heard it anywhere. Or six violas making a rich, gorgeous sound right where I wanted it, and the four cellists responding in kind, not to mention the superb organist, solo violin and pitch-perfect horns. Or the sustained applause from a grateful audience. Or the many friends who said so many nice things afterwards.
~ The bars at the reception were plentiful, varied, and delicious. And even better, because there were many left over, I have brought a selection up to my office and am tasting each one, so that I can be knowledgable before thanking the bakers for their contributions. I am a selfless giver.
~ This was also the weekend of Meet the Parents, and M's mom and dad are sweet, friendly people, and I was reminded over and over again why I love their son. I was glad to have them at the concert and even more glad to join them and M and M's Foster Parent Equivalents (though so far he's avoided the group home experience) at Loring Pasta Bar for brandy sidecars (and food) after it was all over.

And now I'm back in the office, writing thank you notes, cleaning up from the hectic weekend, and reflecting on non-stop music-making, realizing how much I have to practice for trio rehearsal tonight, and two quickly-approaching accompanying gigs. It doesn't stop, does it? I will begin by tasting another bar.


  1. It does stop ... but it is sometimes sudden and permanent.

    Deb said it was a wonderful concert. Though she claimed the theatrics were not up to her expectations.

    Congratulations. Now get back to work.

  2. I'm a patron of the arts, and I have a precondition that must be satisfied before I can enjoy any concert.

    It's very very important to me that the trouser hems of the conductor not be stuck in the back of the shoes. The trouser hems must both be draped properly. No bunching up. (Osmo is very bad at this, BTW.)

    I sat on the middle aisle, (in the middle of the room, as you instructed) so I could do a hem check. If there had been a problem, I had a plan to create a diversion and warn you so that you could do an ankle jiggle and fix any offending hem problems.

    I was so relieved that your conductor trouser legs were both hanging properly, right from the start. I was then able to relax and enjoy.


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