Saturday, August 10, 2013



August 4, 5, 7, and 9, 2013
Der Ring des Nibelungen - Wagner - Seattle Opera
Marion Oliver McCaw Hall, Seattle

Hoh Valley, Olympic National Park, 2010
Perhaps only the symphonies of Bruckner are more capable than the Ring of making it clear that hearing a recording, or seeing a film, is no substitute for the real thing, is a fundamentally different experience. As contingent and limiting as any production is (and this, though fine, was no exception) the relative scales of musical time, dramatic time, and real time, and the relative scales of tonal depth and musical dynamics to the dramatic space and to the real space, and of all the other relative scales of things to things to things to things one might posit, ignite together without precedent and without successor.

The world is once again safe for moss and lichen.
From the beginning we are set adrift without bound, illumined from within. the music billows with currents energized from nowhere, pouring from moment to moment and from scene to scene and from act to act and from evening to evening in river-like motions: rushing gliding slipping bending, pooling in lake and cranny, crashing through canyon and plunge  -  mighty and delicate, stagnant and torrent, in turns and at once. From the cartoon of Das Rheingold, painted in broad brush and bright colors, through the collapsing scaffold of Die Walküre and the dragon permeated forests of Siegfried, the leitmotifs and fragments of leitmotifs accumulate inflections and ramified associations to where, by the time we get to Gotterdammerung (sorry - I'm having a devil of a time getting umlauts to show up), where the musical fabric is stretched sheer and hollow, just a few notes sung in mid-dialogue can reverberate back across the entire cycle. Every most intimate tonal hint is a dialogue with the whole.


August 8, 2013
Banned Rehearsal 44 - July 1985, Keith Eisenbrey, Anna K, Aaron Keyt, Neal Meyer

Aaron and I started this session as a sectional, just the two of us watching slides and commenting. Neal was in the neighborhood canvassing for the Democrats and decided he was close enough to canvass me, so a knock on the door produced our third member. In order to get everybody involved he called Anna and she made her audio appearance over the phone.

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