Monday, May 23, 2011

Music and Chocolate

This weekend, Ethan and I finally did something I’ve been wanting to do for a while: we went to see a show at the Opera House. Mom had given us a gift certificate for Christmas, and I just hadn’t found something that I wanted to see that wouldn’t conflict with our schedules. Finally, I found this concert with the Australian Chamber Orchestra, featuring guest clarinetist Martin Fröst. Ever since I learned to play the clarinet, I’ve had a special fondness for clarinet music. So I bought the tickets and we went.

Unfortunately, there was also a footy game on, which caused a lot of traffic, and so in spite of the fact that I picked the bus that would get us there 25 minutes early, we got there 10 minutes late. This meant that we missed the first song, which I think was the song we would have liked the best – Eine Kleine Nachtmusik. The second song featured Martin Fröst, and was a modern piece called Peacock Tales. Martin Fröst was an excellent clarinetist, and I was truly enthralled by his talent. However, I just don’t dig the modern pieces. Not only did this one lack a linear melody, it also included interpretive dance. I liked the lighting, but if I want to see interpretive dance, I’ll buy tickets to that.

My favorite pieces were Brahms’ Hungarian Dances and an unlisted piece that Fröst played in the middle – he called it something in particular, but I’m not familiar with the term. Anyway, it was a song that sounded like traditional Jewish music, with the clarinet as the featured instrument. I like that kind of music, and I was particularly appreciative, because as a clarinetist, I knew exactly how hard this piece would be to play. Fröst was amazing.

Aside from the music, the Opera House was pretty cool. We were in one of the smaller theaters and it was really pretty and modern on the inside – much better than the Performing Arts Center in Anchorage. Sorry, PAC, but your pineapple ceiling is lame. Plus, the view from the Opera House was amazing!

Also, Commonwealth Bank was sponsoring some old violin that was in the concert, and they left advertising in the form of delicious chocolate violins on all our chairs. Ethan and I snarfed those down like it was our last meal. They were very tasty. It was like Homer Simpson’s fantasy orchestra.

So that was our first Opera House experience. I say “first” because I really want to see an opera in the Opera House before we leave. Ethan is less keen on the opera, but hey, I make those kinds of purchases around here. And if he doesn’t want to go, I’m sure I can find someone who will go with me.


craftosaurus said...

I think it's so cool that you got to see a performance in such an iconic theater. Annnnd there was chocolate! Even better!

Anonymous said...

Glad you enjoyed the concert. Hard to beat the opera house and chocolate to boot! Sorry you missed Eine Kleine Nachtmusik though, it's one of my favorites too.
Does a tour give the same great views? Maybe something for us to plan to do.


L said...

Chocolate makes everything better.

Mom, I am sure you would see the views in the tour. It's hard not to, the Opera House is right on the harbour and has lots of windows.

Carlw4514 said...

Ethan may be like our friends who like, and faithfully go to, theater and musicals, but can't bear opera. It is an acquired taste, Ethan. Start with Puccini or some similar phase Italian stuff and you may find you like it. Skip the Wagner.

Louise, re the modern music, I also find watching it and seeing what the musicians are doing is pretty key to getting anything out of it. Some recent concert we attended had a selection that I got a little out of that for sure if it had come on the radio I would have changed the station instantly.

L said...

Well, I wasn't super enamored with the modern piece, but the main thing I didn't like was the interpretive dance. I found it distracting from the music.