This is the second concert I have been to of a totally unfamiliar genre/work.
Not something I usually do – I always play safe when I book my concerts.
Apparently not this season.
And I am So glad I did.
This work is Sublime – tears down the cheeks kind of sublime – (and not from the $13 a glass of wine)
Rather from the juxtaposition of death and creation. The poem, Dream of Gerontious is stunning, I won’t quote, but so worth a read
And the music, Elgar at his most sublime.
He said ” I wrote it out of my insidest out” “This is the best of me”
And then the singing – soaring praises, exquisite phrasing
and such comfort after the journey to death :
“Softly and gently, dearly ransomed soul. In my loving arms I now enfold thee”
I had decided a long time ago that I would never pay to hear/see any of Wagner’s works. I apologise to the aficionados who ‘get him’; I mean no offence. But 15 hours for one work; too long; too loud; too many high notes; too much for me.
So it was with some chagrin and surprise that I found myself at a concert on a Friday morning (yes I have joined the ranks of the ‘seniors’), having bought a ticket to hear my beloved Beethoven, only to discover that before him, I would be listening to Wagner.
You would not have guessed it from the advertisements
So, several firsts for me today:
- Real live Wagner performance
- Payed for that Wagner performance
- Seated alongside the orchestra instead of in front.
And after an amusing introduction by Sir Andrew Davis outlining the opera (which takes some doing!!!) we sort of understood that we would be hearing part of Gotterdammerung: Act 1 – Dawn Music and Siegried’s Rhine Journey – see even the names are long and ‘loud’ and
So it began.
And I was totally mesmerised
By the pattern
By the flow
By the enormity
By the complexity
By the sound of Wagner.
and all too soon it ended.
Admittedly there were no voices, only the large orchestra and I was so close I could read the music of the harpists below me – so it was visually fascinating too.
Just maybe, I will give Wagner another ‘go’ one day.
In the meantime I shall continue to delight in the familiar accessible glorious majestic tones of Beethoven’s Emperor Concerto which was the finale.
And NEVER disappoints.