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December 17, 2017:

FIXING THE FLUTE AND VIOLIN

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, yesterday I spent three hours doing flute and violin fixes (basically the entire score for those two instruments was re-recorded, as our original players simply weren’t up to the task on those two instruments) and it was absolutely stunning to finally hear Lanny Meyer’s orchestrations as they were meant to be heard. They are, in fact, absolutely brilliant, but you would not have known that from seeing the show. Our excellent sound man had to keep them very low in the mix due to the pitchy playing or in the case of the violin, not even playing stuff in the charts. But yesterday we had two superb musicians, who usually nailed everything on the first time through. We didn’t re-record any of the scene change music, but did record the entr’acte and complete bows and exit music. It was actually jaw dropping to hear it – my engineer and I kept looking at each other with “who knew” expressions. I think we can now make a rather excellent-sounding CD, and believe me I was very worried about it until we did this. I had three actors come in – one to replace one line he fumfered – we did that first – and then our Asian fellow came and I had him do a new take of his entire act one solo, which precedes a trio. He’d actually only missed one word but I felt that particular performance didn’t have the proper energy, but boy did we get that good energy yesterday, so that will now be great. The third person was our Asian gal lead – out of all the performances this was the only one where she entered a beat and a half late on one song – she was always worried about it but we gave her staging that made it much easier – but at this performance she was late on the staging move and therefore late on her entrance. But on the spot, engineer John Adams was able to move things around and somehow, crazily, fixed it perfectly, so she didn’t actually have to do it. I am frequently in awe what John can do – it’s amazing. He’ll begin doing his complete mixes now and then I’ll join him when he’s done, to finesse and do any vocal adjustments I feel are necessary. Very excited to get this done.

Prior to that I’d only gotten four hours of sleep. She of the Evil Eye came and so did a plumber – the toilet back-up problem had actually fixed itself – I test flushed before going to bed and it worked fine and it worked fine in the morning. But there was definitely a problem and he did work both inside the house and outside and everything is A-OK now. He also fixed the showerhead in my bathroom – it had one of those things that keeps the water pressure really low, which I hate, so he removed it and now I have decent water pressure, which is ever so nice. Then we did the session.

After that, I picked up two DGA screeners, stopped at Taco Bell and got some foodstuffs, came home and ate them, and then answered e-mails. Grant came over for a moment and hung another painting in the bedroom, then I sat on my couch like so much fish.

Last night, I watched a screener of a motion picture entitled Lady Bird, a coming of age story set in Sacramento, and an autobiographical film about the filmmaker’s life there. While everyone is trying very hard to make it this year’s “it” picture I don’t think it will get there a la La La Land. This year’s “it” picture seems to be Get Out, but I missed getting that screener in the move – I may borrow it from a nearby DGA friend. In any case, I did enjoy the film very much – musical theater nerds LOVE it because at one point they do a high school musical – Merrily We Roll Along. What the film really has going for it is Saorise Ronan, who might just get another Oscar nomination for it, and Laurie Metcalf as her mom should also get one. It has some very quirky and funny things in it – I don’t know that I’d call it a classic, but I’d certainly recommend it. And it just strengthens my thoughts that Benjamin Kritzer would make an absolutely wonderful movie.

I then watched the other DGA screener, Call Me By Your Name, this years’s gay Indie movie, written by James Ivory (of Merchant-Ivory, so you know what you’re in for). The film has gotten raves, but I have to say despite good performances, for me it was like watching a turtle crossing a great distance VERRRRRY slowly. It’s very bucolic and tranquil, with endless shots of bushes and leaves and snow – it runs two hours and ten minutes and that’s a good thirty minutes too long. But the reviews are great, and the imdb is filled with ten-star reviews all written in the exact same style (I wept, I blubbered, best film I’ve ever seen) that makes you question whether they were all written by shills. But there are also a bunch of one-star reviews written by Bible-thumbers who have obviously not seen the film, but HATE it because it’s about gay people and features scenes of romance between two men. And every one of them uses the word pedophile, because a thirty year-old man has an affair with a seventeen year-old boy. First of all, in Italy, where the film takes place, the age of consent is sixteen. More importantly, do one of these morons actually know what the word pedophile means? Everyone throws it around but almost no one understands that it has a very specific meaning – an adult person who is interested and has desires for a PRE-PUBESCENT CHILD. That is what a pedophile is, morons, so just shut your stupid, ignorant mouths. Where was I? Oh, yes – so, I didn’t love the film and was quite bored through most of it. The performances are all fine, but I’m not quite understanding all the gushing that’s going on.

Then I had a few snacks, thankfully printed out a few orders (whew – not enough, but whew – and we’ll finally be able to put up some audio samples this coming week at some point), listened to music, and relaxed.

Today, I’ll hopefully arise after a good night’s beauty sleep, then I’m relaxing until five, when I’ll attend the Haverty Christmas partay, which I’m looking forward to. And I’ll try to watch Dunkirk.

This week is a lot of meetings and meals, getting ready for the Christmas Eve do, and I will need some excellent vibes and xylophones for a miracle or three. I’ll figure out the Kritzerland show order, get the event up, and maybe even get the commentary out of the way – but I should have time to just relax.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, relax and then attend a Christmas partay. Today’s topic of discussion: It’s free-for-all day, the day in which you dear readers get to make with the topics and we all get to post about them. So, let’s have loads of lovely topics and loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, so happy to finally have the Levi orchestrations sounding so brilliant and as they should have all along.

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