Thursday, 29 April 2010

MrsM at the Royal Festival Hall

Danjulo Ishizaka

Symphony-Concerto in E minor for cello and orchestra

So...I have got over the bit where I obsess about the conductor's ponytail and wonder if it was a style decision or an indication that he could not find time to go to the hairdresser. I have also considered whether the French Horn players really do look like Groucho, Harpo and Zappo - they do, discussion over. Now I am having an in depth analysis of the violinists. Should I reconsider my personal ban on black patent shoes? The violinist in the front row does not look like the Queen in hers although it has to be said that they are 4" heels and that the Queeen does not wear a backless tuxedo. Should I grow my hair and have blonde highlights like the violinist in the second row? What about growing my fringe out like the violinist in the back row?

But wait...
what is this...
the guest cellist is leaving the stage mid solo...
what has happened??

Has he got bored?
Does he want to watch the news?
Has he forgotten to switch off his mobile?

Five minutes later he comes back onto the stage, and has a chat with the conductor. What are they talking about? Have they agreed that the work is too long and decided to cut half an hour out of the middle section? It is all very strange. I find myself entranced by the cellist...he is very young and has geek chic nailed down. The glasses! The hair with side parting! And he is wearing a rain coat on stage!! Perhaps he has to leave early to catch a train. He attacks the cello with dramatic energy and the whole thing is over very quickly.

I turn to the person beside me who is a senior manager for the orchestra.

To my horror, I realise that he is expecting me to make a critical analysis of the music.

I shake my head..
and in a low and serious voice I say..
"Such a thing, imagine!"
and to my huge relief
this cryptic comment is acceptable
and he replies in a low and serious voice
"I know, it was marvellous, wasn't it!"


  1. Concert with a show. Nice.

  2. Alice, I've had such a wonderful time reading here this morning, thank you and I'm so delighted to have discovered this lovely blog place.

  3. French horn players cultivate that Marx brother look, I'd swear to it!

    Did you ever find out why the cellist left mid stream?

  4. I suddenly find myself wanting a backless tuxedo!

  5. His A string snapped Alice, but did he wear his raincoat all the time or only when he came back? I find your companion's comment equally cryptic - I'm still chuckling - how wonderful!
    Bobby x

  6. Thank god.

    A raincoat?

    Such a thing, indeed.

  7. Is he afraid of rain? He seems to be wearing wellies on the picture.

  8. Well done. The art of saying just the right thing while actually saying not much at all is not easily achieved!

  9. perhaps it brings him luck. or not.

  10. Mr DC's much missed Grandma used to tell the tale of attending a concert which she found completely baffling. At the end she turned to her neighbour to comment on how dreadful the pieces had been, only to have him stand up and bow in response to calls for the composer.

    She swore it was a true story. I'm not so sure ...

  11. Raincoat, wellies, whatever; I am a sucker for a man with a cello. And he's really cute, besides. (Never mind the half my age part...)

  12. That is certainly more extreme than I've seen, but I have had to deal with conductors who refuse to admit the existence of the chorus and will only give comments through the chorus master....

  13. Oh Alice, fabulous. I do so love your take on life and I intend to file away that quote for future use, I think it has many applications.

  14. I'm glad I'm not the only ones who has thoughts like these during concerts! K x


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