Tag Archives: performance

Wake Up This Morning To A Drumming Surprise

My daughter sent me a link to a marvelous youtube video.  This kid is only 3 years old.  Be amazed, everyone!!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O4Girrb66lY

 

 

More Music in My LIfe

Today, I decided to put some music into my life for a change.  Started to go through the CDs just taking up space in a drawer; not pulling their weight at all.  Needed to chase away some blues.  The sun is out, the fluffy, cottony puffs of clouds are giving some relief to the vast blue sky, the temp is just right, there’s a soft breeze – a perfect Springtime day in South Florida.  But, this great bit of Paradise just wasn’t getting through to me today.

Backing up a little – while surfing the channels, I came across the old movie, “Beaches.”  Sat down and watched it – it had just begun, so my timing was perfect.

Beaches poster.

Beaches poster.

I had enjoyed it many years ago in the theater.  I was always a fan of Bette – such a talent; however, I had forgotten that the movie was sad at the end.  But I was caught up in the story and in the performances, so I sat through it to the end.  This, and some disturbing news I heard this morning topped off my mood, I’m sure.

So, moving forward:  It’s been a long time since the house reverberated with the “Sound of Music.”  I found a CD entitled, “Experience the Divine.”

Experience the Divine

Experience the Divine

A collection of Bette’s rendition of popular songs of the time (1993).  Of course, there was the “Wind Beneath My Wings.”  It tugged at my heart; sure, it was beautifully sung.  But it was also my late husband’s favorite song.  I allowed myself to get kind of melancholy.  It was a bitter-sweet few minutes, but it made me feel calm inside – reflective.  Thinking thoughts with good memories.

Another song which I like so much is “From A Distance.”  Bette’s phrasing is, in my opinion, superb.  She puts so much of herself into her performances.

I also found a collection of Simon & Garfunkel’s “Greatest Hits.”

The cover on my CD album.

The cover on my CD album.

Scarborough Fair” was such a popular song and I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that one.  Simon & Garfunkel performed in many concerts in many venues, but this one was in Central Park.  If there was a roof, they would have brought it down!

The famous “Mrs Robinson” fell on friendly ears, that’s for sure.  I personally believe they performed this one more than any other.  The “Sound of Silence” also brings back fond memories.  When my children were very young, we used to live across the street from the owner of a small landscaping nursery who swore he knew Simon & Garfunkel.

Well, needless to say, I have happily welcomed music back into my home and into my life again.

(Images from bing dot com)

A Day in West Palm Beach FL

A last minute call to a friend, last minute call for tickets, and off we were to see a Miami City Ballet performance at the Raymond F. Kravis Center for the Performing Arts.

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Kravis Center at night, courtesy Kravis dot org.

The day couldn’t be more perfect:  Sunny, no chance of rain, and temps between 75 and 80.  Parked in a great spot in the parking garage attached to the Center, and strolled over to Cheesecake Factory, one of our faves.  This restaurant is one of many in the upscale City Place area:  an area loaded with restaurants, various shopping destinations, entertainment, events, and a top-notch plaza in the middle of it all.  A great place to enjoy the paradisaical weather of South Florida.

After enjoying our delish lunch; hers, a specially-prepared egg and asparagus presentation, and mine, mini-crab-cake balls and a plate of baby Romain lettuce leaves wraps with mixture of mushrooms and chicken.  We thoroughly enjoyed every bit.  Our waitress was excellent, which always makes the dining experience all the more exquisite.

On to the ballet.  The title of the program was “Triple Threat.”  Had no idea why it was given that title, but we were about to find out, for sure.

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The first part of the performance was, “Episodes.”  “The challenging twelve-tone music of Anton von Webern inspired George Balanchine, in 1959, to collaborate with Martha Graham on a project to utilize all of the composer’s orchestral music.  Graham created a soon-forgotten dramatic work about Mary, Queen of Scots.  Balanchine’s extraordinary contribution was the ballet we know as Episodes.”  (Quote from the Playbill.)

I have quoted from the Playbill above, because we were flabbergasted that this one-third of the performances was so boring to us.  The costumes were skin-tight black and white.  Very stark.  We are “seasoned” theater-goers and have years of enjoying ballet performances under our belts; however, this took us by complete surprise.  The ballet company did a fantastic job with difficult positions and actions across the stage, but not only was this performance stark and angular, but the “music” was certainly from a different universe.  Webern’s composition, masterfully produced by the accomplished musicians, was noise that sounded like squeaks, bangs, and un-godly blasts that appeared to be coming from a very sick machine.  We suffered through this, glued to our seats in disbelief!

Before the next portion of the performance, we were given a “brief pause” which was very welcomed, so that we could gather ourselves for the next onslaught, so we thought:  “Tschaikovsky Pas de Deux.”

“George Balanchine called (Tschaikovsky Pas de Deux) “a display piece, based on the music and the maximum gifts of virtuoso performers.”  This piece was brought to the stage in 1964, starring Violette Verdy and Edward Villella.  Anything connected with Edward Villella, was, in my opinion, a masterpiece waiting to happen.  Villella was a master.  Period.

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It was a beautiful performance, this Pas de Deux.  But after I had to scrape my emotions up from the bottom of the barrel after the first part, it made it difficult for me to appreciate this one as much as it should have been appreciated.

After a real intermission, the lights dimmed, and we waited with anticipation for the final part of the afternoon’s performance.  “In 1995 – almost forty years after his great musical West Side Story opened on Broadway – Jerome Robbins decided to distill and reshape it into a dance work for New York City Ballet.  The result is an electrifying and moving ballet that both shadows the original and stands alone as a new original.”  (another quote from the Playbill.)

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The title of this final phase was:  “West Side Story Suite.”  That title tells it all.  The company accomplished a miracle yesterday afternoon.  Standing ovations, clapping till my hands felt like they will never be fit for clapping again, and the place was wild.

Emails and Phone Calls

The day has been a mixture of sun and rain, temp around 80(!).  The weather here in South Florida can change every half hour.

Got a call from my new friend (remember the wine tasting?).  She was supposed to attend a violinist performance with me on Sunday, but it turns out she may not be able to after all.

Another friend has some car problems, and I’ve offered some suggestions (I’m not auto-mechanically-inclined) regarding her problem.  We chatted amiably by email.

Got another phone call from my friend in Connecticut.  She’s coming for a visit in a couple of weeks, and she’s on a Jenny Craig diet now, so we had much to discuss regarding food!

Daughter called and we talked about her day, and what she has planned for her weekend.  She’s a very busy person!

Called my sister late in the evening.  It was her husband’s birthday today, and I forgot to send a card (hand-slapping going on here).  Got him on the phone and wished him a good one; after all, it still was before midnight!

Taking time out from mundane chores to interact with the important people in my life gives me much pleasure.  Do you take the time?