What's the most important part of music review, you might ask? It's a good question. The who, what, when, where, or possibly the why?
Those things are nice, but they don't get to the heart of what it is to attend a classical music concert.
No, it's all about the setting and the mood. Bring the reader into the seat of the reviewer to experience the beauty and grandeur of watching an entire symphony orchestra in action.
Concert review: Conductor Jahja Ling impressive at RPO concert
Anna Reguero, Democrat and Chronicle, August 6, 2010
For future concerts, Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra might want to add to its pre-concert announcements.
Really? Why might they want to do that?
It could go something like this: Will all musicians please turn off any metronomes, tuning devices — and cell phones?
"Musicians," always leaving their metronomes running.
So, really, how about this impressive performance from Jahja Ling?
Guest conductor Jahja Ling had just cut off the orchestra for a large break in the second movement of Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 17 during Wednesday evening's concert at Hochstein.
Ah, the glorious K. 453 in G major, with the somewhat unusual sub-dominant slow movement. Lovely little concerto...
Ling's wife, pianist Jessie Chang, was about to begin her cadenza.
A husband and wife cast as conductor and soloist. Seemingly the perfect set up for a truly magical, and not at all unusual, evening.
Great set up...what happened next?
That's when a "boing" interrupted the silence.
A 'what' interrupted the silence?
And then another "boing."
What in the hell is a boing?
Its origin unknown,...
Sounds like aliens.
...the audience scanned the hall to find the culprit. Was it a metronome? A timer?
I dunno. Maybe it was a violin dancing with a saxophone...
In any case, I just can't wait to find out what happens next.
And what about the poor soloist for pity's sake!?
Chang kept her concentration and continued through her cadenza,...
Whew. A consummate professional, to say the least. Truly she is a hero to have kept her cool in such trying times.
...which showed off her light and sparkling touch, perfect for Mozart.
Who has time for a review of the performance at a time like this?
Get on with it, man. What of the mysterious "boing"?
By the end of her cadenza, the "boing" continued on.
The suspense is killing me.
So did the orchestra, ignoring the extraneous noise as they sailed into the work's final movement.
They're on a boat?
The ushers finally walked around the hall, trying to locate the noise.
Isn't always the extras who get killed first in these types of concerts?
That's when I noticed principal bassist Colin Corner...
@!#?@! It's always the bassist!
....shrugging and shooting worried looks at his stand partner. Could it be that the sound was coming from his case, sitting behind him on top of a spare piano on the side of Hochstein's stage?
"Villains!" he shrieked, "dissemble no more! I admit the deed! -- tear open my case! -- here, here! -- it is the boinging of his hideous heart!"
During a few measures of rest near the end of the concerto, Corner handed over his bass to go silence the "boing" song. It turns out it was an alert feature on his cell phone.
Well, that's rather anti-climactic.
Was it at least an alert feature of DOOM?
Rather than roast Corner, this mistake was likely because Hochstein does not have backstage space to keep instrument cases.
Ah, I guess that explains that. Everything's been wrapped up into a nice little package.
I'm glad that's over with. So, onto the concert.
At the Eastman Theatre, the musicians have both a downstairs green room and space behind the stage shell for storage.
I see. [Looks at watch.]
Any cell phones to ring in cases and bags would not be heard on stage.
Really? They wouldn't be heard on stage at the Eastman Theatre?
Valiantly, Ling — for whom this performance was a possible audition for the music director opening (he's currently music director of the San Diego Symphony) — didn't flinch and continued to steer the orchestra confidently.
He had great chemistry with Chang.
Really? He had great chemistry with his wife?
When Chang's first entrance moved a little more swiftly than the orchestra, Ling immediately looked back at her to adjust.
Well, recovering from a "boing" of this magnitude is sure to leave at least a few scars.
She adjusted, too. They were a great pair.
What was she playing again?
Ling's chemistry with the orchestra was also noticeable.
Though he lacks the graceful arm movements and posture of some of the other candidates, he has a friendly and encouraging presence on stage.
He blazed through Mozart's Overture to The Marriage of Figaro and also conducted a high voltage version,...
embeddence awesome: Is it just me, or does Q*bert have a legitimate case against the Snorks for copyright infringement?
Just in case you hadn't read the original review yet, of the 12 paragraphs (newspaper paragraphs), 8 were about the "boing". Eight.