1. As a clarinetist myself, I’m insanely jealous. Not necessarily of their playing ability, as they’re highly advanced students and on their way to being professionals, but of the opportunity to play such wonderful music in a large clarinet ensemble!

    Also, color me surprised that any European conservatory deigns to play an American composer…

    I’m always stunned by these perfectly in-sync mosaic videos. So much of playing in an ensemble is hearing and adjusting to your fellow players. Even with a synchronizing click track or pre-recorded conductor, you’re still missing subtleties of interpretation and balance. Though I guess balance can be adjusted in editing, a tall task by itself.

  2. @Powers, speaking of synchro problems for online performance, I never knew what came of the project to form a Yahoo Orchestra – or was it YouTube Orchestra – which was to be led by MTT. I recall seeing announcements and calls for players to submit audition video clips, and maybe some of the audition tapes were released but I don’t recall seeing any ensemble performances. There was some talk that they couldn’t solve the technical problems for synchronization.

  3. Still @Powers 😉, on Europeans playing American composers. The Berlin Phil, when concert going was first suspended, released some things for free on their Digital Concert Hall (and later the whole archive). One of those they promoted was the latest New Year’s Eve concert, led by the new Chief Conductor, Kirill Petrenko. It was mostly (or maybe entirely) an American program. It included Bernstein’s Dances From West Side Story. It was fun seeing the orchestra players shouting out “Mambo!”.

    In one of the audience reaction shots, I thought a nice middle aged lady in a center seat resembled Angela Merkel. Wait-a-minute!, why wouldn’t it actually be her? I grabbed a screenshot and friends on Facebook said yeah, it’s entirely plausible.


  4. Mitch4, the woman in the audience looks more like Merkel than the shot of Angela Merkel on the right. =)

    I’m afraid I don’t know who “MTT” is.

  5. Sync-ups have amazed me also; but for the first time, I’ve recently seen a few out-of-sync performances, so I found this beautiful recently-made performance to be especially delightful. Thanks!

  6. A number of musicians have been done “at-home” performances. I have been enjoying Mary Chapin Carpenter. She does lo-fi performances, just her, a guitar, Angus the golden retriever, and occasionally White Kitty (usually the latter is napping).

  7. @ Mitch4 – The lighting makes it difficult to say for certain, but the man sitting to Merkel’s right (on the left side of the picture) bears a convincing resemblance to Merkel’s husband Joachim Sauer.

  8. European orchestras play quite a lot of American music, if it’s by Bernstein or Gershwin or Charles Ives.

  9. Yep, I guess they haven’t done much Florence B. Price.

    The Berlin New Years Eve concert I posted about earlier, with a mostly American program, had a singer (not really to my taste) so included songs from musical theater. Thus Rodgers, Sondheim, Loewe, Weill (erm, from his American period), Harold Arlen (Somewehre over the rainbow)

  10. Powers: As an amateur clarinetist, I second ‘most everything you said, and I thank you for sharing that wonderful performance by the “Conservatoire national supérieur de musique et de danse de Lyon.” Every note of it is a joy.

  11. Robert is a major fan of Stephen Sondheim. There was a 90th birthday tribute to him online which replaced the live show which was suppose to be done for same. Of course our newspaper did not have anything about it until that day and I don’t read it until night (currently reading it online) and my reaction in seeing it listed as being on Sunday – was that it was the following the Sunday not the Sunday it was, and it was over already when. But we did find that since it was Youtube we could watch it different day.

    It was rather interesting as each performer was home alone. (Apparently the original showing started late due to technical difficulties.) It was an assortment of performers who have been in his shows over the decades – not necessarily singing something from a part they had played. In some cases a man sang a song written for a female character and vice versa. Neil Patrick Harris had his 2 children perform with him. No costumes, casual clothing.

    Best performance we thought was from “Pacific Overtures”, the song “Someone in a Tree” which involved 4 people in 4 different locations singing the parts. They apparently knew where they would be in the split screen and are looking in the direction of the person singing. It is a particularly good song to begin with and the performance of it was great. (And by probably the least known performers in the show.)

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