Archive for the ‘Concerts’ Category

Goodbye, older women

Posted by Susan Tomes on 19 September 2009 under Concerts, Daily Life, Musings  •  Leave a comment

There’s been a lot in the press this summer about middle-aged women and the way they’re unceremoniously dropped from positions such as BBC newsreader or presenter. Newsreader Selina Scott brought the topic to everyone’s attention with her age discrimination claim against Channel Five, and lots of middle-aged women added their own experiences of being expected […]

Pulling out the stops

Posted by Susan Tomes on 15 September 2009 under Concerts, Musings  •  1 Comment

I was in the audience this week at a concert of ‘early music’. At one point, a harpsichordist played a piece. Between two of its variations he pulled out a harpsichord stop which produced a different tone colour, and then he played a fast variation. When it was over, a woman leaned over to me, […]

Calligraphy Blues

Posted by Susan Tomes on 21 August 2009 under Concerts, Daily Life, Musings  •  Leave a comment

I recently made up a couple of cadenzas for a Haydn piano concerto. I kind of improvised them at the piano, and played them in the concert without ever writing them out. Afterwards, I thought I’d try and note them down before I forgot them entirely. Cadenzas are supposed to be, or at least sound, […]

Flying the Flag

Posted by Susan Tomes on 14 August 2009 under Concerts, Musings  •  Leave a comment

Last night’s Prom offered the invigorating spectacle of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra playing beautifully under their fine young conductor Ilan Volkov. One of the good effects of globalisation has been on the standards of orchestral playing. Because of the widespread availability of music both live and recorded, nobody can now hide in a corner […]

Feeling free to be themselves

Posted by Susan Tomes on 6 August 2009 under Concerts, Musings  •  4 Comments

I’ve been thinking about Charles Hazlewood’s article in Monday’s Guardian. He wrote about some open-air orchestral concerts he’s going to conduct in a field in Somerset, explaining that he wants to bring great music out of the intimidating concert hall and into a fun relaxing space. Good for him. I started my professional career doing […]