I’ve gone to three concerts in the last two weekends. Even that wasn’t enough, because there were two on Friday night I wanted to see at the same time, so I had to pick one. You could call it a music glut, and that’s a good thing.
Last Friday, Dave and I went to see the Detroit Symphony on night two of their TchaikovskyFest. That’s right, seventeen days of the great Russian composer. The programme was the Marche Solennelle (a seldom-programmed piece), the second piano concerto, and the sixth symphony, also known as the Pathétique. Olga Kern was the soloist in the concerto, and she was stunning in both ways. When she entered, I gasped “She’s beautiful!” but I immediately was ashamed because I had reacted only to her appearance. Then again, making a grand appearance is in the job description. She started playing with such energy and nuance, the beauty of the piece exceeded that of her and her gown. After the intermission, the orchestra delivered a brilliant rendition of the Pathetique, triumphant in the third movement and truly sad in the fourth. The DSO is playing SO well this year.
Realizing I hadn’t been to the Ark in Ann Arbor in a long time, I took the opportunity to see Cheryl Wheeler there two nights ago. I saw her at Hiawatha a few summers ago, so I expected a great show, and she delivered. I was surprised it was mostly her goofy songs and not many of her deep, heartfelt songs, but that was fine. I think it was a more intimate show and so she talked more to the audience. The opener was Lucy Wainwright Roche (are there ANY Wainrights who don’t perform? I hope not, actually) and she was fine too, just as talkative and friendly.
The show I missed was Jo Serrapere and her trio at Crazy Wisdom Bookstore and Tea Room. I had to walk by it twice to get to and from the Ark. But the show times just did not allow even popping my head in to say hi to Jo. Next time, I promise.
Finally, last night I secured a spot in the open mic list for Mama’s Coffeehouse at the Birmingham Unitarian Church, which allowed me to see Billy Brandt & the Sugarees. I’ve kinda known Billy for years, but this is the first time I’ve seen one of his bands, and they were outstanding. By turns rootsy and cosmic, their good time on stage made the audience feel great. I even bought two of Billy’s CDs. My set of three songs went way better than I could’ve expected.
I think next week I will have to stay home and play CDs or something… unless I talk myself into going to see the last performance in the TchaikovskyFest. They’re playing the 1812 Overture. I really should go…..