johnleiser

Archive for May, 2010|Monthly archive page

SMSS @St I 5/5/10

In Uncategorized on May 10, 2010 at 1:01 pm

Every time there is a SMSS concert, I wonder how Kent Tritle will make it better than the last one. Sure there are favorites, but they keep piling up with music that I never heard and I go to St. Ignatius every Sunday so you might guess there are try outs for the pews. Maybe ! Kent instructs us with a soft touch and at the end of the season you barely realize that you know lots more than you did when it started. This gem mixes Monteverdi, Stravinsky and Arvo Part, spanning 400 years and showing us both how much has changed and how little. The singers and the chorus are some great sound that I don’t really have a name for without sounding silly. The church is the real place to hear this music, sacred music in a sacred space, oh I get it. Trying to separate the two does a disservice to both, but the nonpracticing want to hear too, so it helps to keep the music playing. Monteverdi wrote liturgical music for a living and had to produce all the time and Laetatus sum and the two motets that we heard show the consistent high quality of his compositions. And the singing was remarkable. Igor Stravinsky is very much in the NY scene, who would think SMSS as trendy, so his mass fit that bill. Beautifully done and preformed. Arvo Part might have been a rock star if was born 10 years later and Miserere shows us what an amazing composer he is and the singing and the singing. Ending with his Beatitudes. Lucky are the listeners because they will hear more next season, thanks Kent!

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The Yellow Jackets with Mike Stern @ Rose Theater 4/30/10

In Uncategorized on May 1, 2010 at 3:16 pm

Let me start by saying these guys are great players and I like them a lot. This is the wrong venue for jazz fusion, not to mention decade, and there should be places to hear this stuff. Le Poisson Rouge comes to mind. Mike played fast and furious, no bad or extra notes from him and Bob Mintzer is a wonderful foil. Love when they play the melodies together. Jimmy Haslip’s base playing pushes every one and Will Kennedy is a machine whew! Russell Ferante only plays what is perfect for the occasion and the entire effect is a terrific band and show.

Tosca @ The Met 4/29/10

In Uncategorized on May 1, 2010 at 3:06 pm

The lady at the bus stop sneared at me for going to see the new Tosca production;so I told her we were aged out and The Met needs to get new people interested. Needless to say the rest of the bus ride was nice and quiet. and she was wrong, this is a modern set and not Zefferilli, OK. More to the point is Philippe Auguinmade the Met Orchestra sound great, no surprise , but a good effert and Marcello Giordani is the tenor of the moment and sang the@#$%$# out of Caraaadossi and Daniela Dessi was fine. George Gagnidze made us hate Scarpia with good singing and posturing and the final effect of Tocsa jumping and being freeze framed as she does was great. I like the production and the clamor about it is good for opera, it has something contemporary to say. Keep them coming Peter!!