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August 22, 2020:


Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, I am sitting here like so much fish, listening to Barbirolli do his Sibelius complete symphonies and boy are my arms tired.  Oh, wait… These are newly remastered versions for the big box and while the differences are subtle, they are there and better than the old set I already had.  I wonder if someone remasters me if I’ll be subtly better than the old me?  Would I be younger than Springtime, spryer, jauntier, fleet of foot, foot of fleet, and bouncier?  Meanwhile, I’m just tuckered out from a long day of Zoom rehearsals and then doing stuff on the computer.  I never even had a chance to watch anything.  In fact, I never even left the house until ten o’clock, when I took a brief drive.  At that point, I thought I could definitely use a new remastering, let me tell you.  I must say, I love the Sibelius seventh – some of it was very inspirational to Mr. John Williams for he paid homage to it in the Fortress of Solitude music in Superman.  Mr. Williams was not the only one to pay homage to Sibelius in a film score – just a few short years later Mr. Michael Kamen paid homage in his score to The Dead Zone, said homage being the second symphony.  I paid homage to Sibelius in my novel Thrill Ride with the Sibelius fifth.  And I always pay homage to Sibelius on his birthday, since his birthday is also my birthday.  Well, I think we’ve exhausted this topic, don’t you?  I think we’ve just about pummeled this topic to within an inch of its life, don’t you?  Frankly, I think this entire paragraph should be remastered with a little more high end and a tighter bass.

Yesterday was a busy little day.  I did get nine-and-a-half hours of very needed sleep, so that was good.  Once up, I was only two hours away from the first Zoom rehearsal, so I did things that needed doing, answered e-mails, had extraordinary amount of disgusting phlegm, so I finally took a Mucinex-D, which did ultimately help, I must say, and did say.  Then it was time for the first of the Zoom rehearsals.  First up was Robert Yacko and we ran his two solos (in this show our regulars only have two rather than their usual three solos, but they’re also in a group number). I chose perfect songs for Robert and he’s doing them wonderfully, even at this early stage.  Then it was Daniel Bellusci – one of his numbers he’s done many times so we didn’t have to work on that one, but we talked and sang through his other number and that will be fun.

After that it was Peyton Kirkner.  As with Daniel, one of her numbers she’s done many times, so we just worked on the second song, which is a song that she’s debuting, that no one has ever heard.  I’m always so impressed with her instincts.  We talked through a couple of the song’s “beats” (not musical beats – dramatic beats) and she’ll be great.  Then it was Hartley Powers, and I chose a perfect song for her and she’s going to be just great with it.  Finally, it was Sami Staitman – we ran her two songs and she’s already excellent on them.

Now, about forty minutes prior to the first rehearsal, I ordered Jack in the Box, just because I knew it would get here quickly, since it’s close.  And yet.  It got her five minutes before Robert’s session, was missing two items and I basically ate what there was during Robert’s session.  Then I went to Postmates and they refunded the cost of the missing items.  I’m not ordering from Jack in the Box anymore – too many screw-ups, but between that and the wrong pizza the day before, I may give up on Postmates if there’s another screw-up after this.

After the rehearsals, I didn’t feel like watching anything, and I had some work to do on the computer, so that’s what I did.  Because I hadn’t really had much to eat due to two missing items, I made some white rice with sauteed onions and butter, and that was good.  I also had some peanuts.  Then I took a drive, came home, and listened to the Sibelius seventh, then took a break from the Barbirolli box, to listen to the six-CD Seiji Ozawa and the Chicago Symphony box.  The RCA stereo recordings, most of which are from 1967 are excellent and while I’m not a huge fan of Ozawa’s, I do have to admit that these very early recording show a lot of passion and energy.  And the repertoire is interesting, too – the first CD having the Bartok first and third piano concertos with Peter Serkin.  Those performances are seriously great. There’s also another Serkin disc with Schoenberg that I’m looking forward to.  I rather like these smaller boxes.

Today, I’ll be up when I’m up, I’ll do whatever needs doing, I’ll hopefully pick up packages, I’ll eat something light, but mostly I need to have a bit of a ME day after a work session with Richard Allen on the opening number of the show – but that won’t take too long.  After that, I’ll watch, listen, and relax.

Tomorrow, I have a five o’clock Zoom rehearsal, but other than that I’m not sure what will need doing and some potential things that need doing will depend on how I’m feeling.  Then next week is very busy as we start to gear up for the show.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, be up when I’m up, do whatever needs doing, hopefully pick up some packages, eat something light, have a work session, and then try to have a partial ME day, after which I’ll watch, listen, and relax.  Today’s topic of discussion: What are your favorite piano concertos?  Let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, as I continue to wonder if a new remastering would work wonders on me.

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