One of the good things about being more “out” about my location is that I can now tell you about cool things that I have done around town without being so vague. Yesterday, we went to a symphony concert that was part of our subscription, and I was so moved by the performance that I wanted to tell you about it. We have, without question, a world-class group of musicians. At many of the season’s concerts, guest soloists enhance what is already a memorable experience. In all cases, I appreciate the soloist’s talent and enjoy the music. In a few rare cases, I am blown away by the individual’s talent. Yesterday was one of those days.
The soloist was pianist Gabriela Montero. For those thinking that the name rings a bell, she was the pianist in the quartet that performed at Tuesday’s inauguration. That fact alone was pretty cool. Then, we saw her play Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue. Her fingers seemed to simply glide along the keys…no pounding, no effort, no fuss. They just floated along and beautiful music came forth. After the piece was over, she asked for input from the audience in order to provide us with musical improvisation. After someone finally brought forth a theme (Over the Rainbow), she took that simple melody and composed, on the spot, a musical piece so complex and beautiful and riveting that I am still awestruck at what I witnessed. And if that were not enough, after the intermission, Gabriela was joined by three other musicians for a special piece. John Williams gave special permission to the symphony that his recent composition, Air and Simple Gifts, could be performed. In this new era of hope and change and personal responsibility, I was moved by hearing the inaugural music brought to my hometown and rendered so carefully.
It was a pretty awesome day.