Right now I’m sitting here next to one of my fantastic kids (who has
her toy laptop open just like me). We’re watching the snow blow around
outside and we’ve already been outside to build our snow turkey. This
week in our season tends to be a little surreal.
We’re in the heart of the busiest part of our season, greeting our
new principal guest conductor Jan Pascal Tortelier, rehearsing a
complicated and transparently lush program, preparing two tour programs
on Saturday, going on tour next week. But not today. Today I’m here
with my family, as I’m sure many of my colleagues are, being thankful
for the good in our lives. It’s hard to believe that tomorrow night
we’re performing Ravel’s Daphnis and Chloe, just as last night in the
midst of the rehearsal with the Mendelssohn Choir it was hard to
believe that today would be Thanksgiving.
It promises to be a spectacular program, Tortelier is relentless
with his focus on details and the blend of instrument groups. At one
point in the rehearsal last night he brought out a blend that I hadn’t
been conscious of before, one between the bass section and the timpani.
With the balance Tortelier was after, the combination sounded like a
beefy section of tymps, or a rumbling bass section with a ringing
clarity, take your pick. In honor of our principal timpanist, lets call it "Timbassi"…….a very cool sound.
Have a great holiday weekend, come treat yourself to a French
dessert (Tortelier, Berlioz, Bizet, and Ravel) to top off your