ARTYFACTS: Day 15 - Taverner

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Day 15 - Taverner

In long performances your eyes can drift, and anything out of the ordinary can catch the attention. In this case it was the huge guy straining out of his white tee-shirt, and his young daughter, standing right in front of the stage. She was literally leaning over the lip of the stage and playing with the dust during the performance. Then she started to experiment, standing on one leg, the the other. Finally she fell asleep on the floor, curled up in the foetal position, her head on her coat.

Brassed off
Then, unbelievably, one of the orchestra fell asleep. One of the brass section, (guy with glasses and grey hair) had the brass neck to nod off, much to the amusement of his brassy friends, who were smirking knowingly to each other.

As if this weren't enough, another brass player sloped off stage after signalling to the percussionist. Sure, he didn't have much to do, but he did miss an entire section, leaving his fellow trumpeters to carry the load. If you pay £25 for a concert, you don't expect them either to sleep or sidle off to the pub!

I, unlike some of the orchestra, was awake and enjoyed the whole spectacle. Interesting idea to take a 'Icon' as inspiration for a piece. I couldn't imagine how this could have been achieved until I heard it. He takes the strong foreground/background form in painting and reproduces it through a continuous backdrop of base sound and uses the cello's higher pitch as the foreground effect.

The second work is full of powerful choral blasts interspersed with solos, but unless you're of a devotional disposition, the repetition and sheer length of the piece can be draining.


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