I won’t become a doctor.
One day you will be sick."
Poem written by an 11 year old Afghan girl
This poem was recorded in a NYT magazine article about female underground poetry groups in Afghanistan. An amazing article about the ways in which women are using a traditional two line poetry form to express their resistance to male oppression, their feelings about love (considered blasphemous).
I’m in another orchestra concert on Friday night, with LUCO: http://www.luco.org/concert-iii—-rebels-with-a-cause.html
Let me tell you about it. We’re playing three pieces.
1. BERLIOZ Intrada from Rob Roy
This is an overture that Berlioz wrote, to… nothing, it’s just an overture. In the 19th century, people realized that they liked hearing overtures outside of an opera or a ballet, so composers started writing overtures with nothing attached. It ends, and then you have to use your imagination, I guess, about what happens next.
This overture is what you get when a French guy smokes a ton of opium and writes an overture to an Italian opera that doesn’t exist about a Scottish folk hero. I don’t know what else to say about it.
2. DEBUSSY Premiere Rhapsodie
with Steven Noffsinger, clarinet
This is the closest thing that Debussy ever got to writing a concerto. I love playing Debussy- the part for any individual instrument looks like wisps and bits of nothing, with a few melodic lines thrown in. When you put them all together, they snap in place, flutter around, hum, and glow.
3. BARTOK Concerto for Orchestra
My favorite piece in this concert- it’s monumental, and a huge undertaking for any orchestra (the Seattle Symphony is actually playing it on Thursday and Saturday, if you’d rather see how the professionals do it). Bartok wrote it in 1944, and it’s meant to really show the range and depth of an orchestra. It rages in places, dances in others; it’s unapologetically modern and yet accessible; it has jazz sometimes and fugues other times. It’s both incredibly difficult and utterly rewarding to play.
Maybe I’ll see you there!