Two Quick Orchestra

Stanford Symphony Orchestra delivers a sleepy Schubert, and
New Haven Symphony Orchestra plays a fitting waltz
Penny R. S. Brandt
Stamford Symphony Orchestra: Earlier this semester, I won tickets to see the Stamford
Symphony, featuring Vladimir Feltsman performing Beethoven’s Emperor Concerto.
The concert was Saturday, Oct. 18. Feltsman is just the kind of pianistic bad-ass that you
want to hear perform the Emperor. He was powerful and accurate, and still managed to
be beautiful and interesting in the slower parts. Frankly, though, the symphony barely
kept up with him. For the first half, they had played Beethoven’s Coriolan Overture and
Schubert’s Ninth Symphony. Even a big classical music geek like me had trouble staying
awake for the Schubert. I hope that the Stamford Symphony gets better over the course
of the season, but I’m not likely to go back unless I win tickets again.
The Stamford Symphony is doing an interesting concert with some great American music
on Jan. 24, 2009 and Jan. 25, 2009. If you live in that area and can talk your parents into
buying the tickets, it might be worth checking out.
New Haven Symphony Orchestra: Sunday, Nov. 9, I had the opportunity to attend a
rehearsal of the New Haven Symphony orchestra. The group, directed by William
Boughton, rehearsed the second movement of Tchaikovsky’s Sixth Symphony,
“Pathètique.” The description, “Pathètique,” explains that the symphony is sad, not
pathetic. The second movement of the symphony sounds like a waltz, but it is actually
written with a five count beat instead of the three count beat of a typical waltz. The result
is a waltz that you can’t quite dance to – a fitting composition from Tchaikovsky, who
had to hide his homosexuality to avoid being sent to Siberia. The NHSO played the piece
brilliantly, with great suggestions from Boughton for bringing out the heavy emotional
content, and I was sad I wasn’t able to attend the actual performance on Nov. 13.
The orchestra will be performing a Holiday Pops concert under the direction of guest
conductor, Gerald Steichen, on Dec. 19 at 7:30pm at the Schubert Theatre. Check it out
if you’re still in town, or stay tuned for info about a January performance of