Wednesday, 9 April 2008

Cultural evening

At the end of a long day, JD and I went to have a cultural evening as we do now and then at the Bridgewater Hall in city centre. This is one of the few perks of the "student budget" ... we get GREAT tickets for 2.50 BPS! I call up on the phone ask for the best I can have at the student rate (granted Wed nights only) and tonight we had center balcony section, third row, exact middle! Awesome ... the acoustics in the Hall are fabulous, and it's beautiful too as you can see HERE .

Some have said it's not that great a building, but I think it's lovely and the Halle Orchestra based there are good too! With a long history here in Manc as you can read all about here .

Perhaps not London Symphony, but pretty close; AND to hear live music for such a price, it should be packed but it's not. The week nights we go there are lots of older retired folk enjoying a night out and they're always a truly appreciative audience. Tonight there were also 4 schools from the local county and they have an orchestra member in their school, they come to hear them play, then they write a piece themselves which they come back and share with other schools and family.

Tonight's program included Dvorak's "Carnival". But the highlight was Elgar's Cello Concerto in E minor. This is often called his melancholy masterpiece and was played to its passionate best by the tragic figure of Jaqueline Du Pre. You can find all the movements on YouTube but I'll put the first (9 minutes) here with it's instantly recognizable and haunting phrases ...

For me, this is the passion of music which can give us a glimpse of eternity. Amen.

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