Log in

Previous Entry | Next Entry

Having trouble learning to use an LJ-Cut - Attempt follows!
Here's a report I posted elsewhere about last weekend's concert with Howard Shore and a live version of the score to Fellowship Of The Ring played live to the film at Radio City Music Hall ....

Well, for starters, it wasn't conducted by Howard Shore at all-- he gave a pre-concert lecture (along with the author of a forthcoming book on The Music of the LOTR Films) and then disappeared backstage until the very end, after the conductor, the soloists, and the orchestra had received thunderous applause, when he came forth to take his bow.

The Swiss conductor, Ludwig Wicki, was leading his own 21st Century Orchestra from Luzerne, along with New York's The Collegiate Chorale and Brooklyn Youth Chorus, and indeed (I'd wondered) they had a print of the film with all the original sounds except the music. It was shown with English subtitles.

--How was it? It was amazing (in a good way) though on the whole I think you folks got the more unforgettable musical evening. (I mean, Puccini! and the golden voices you've all described!) The only way I could be sure that they weren't up there "lip-synching" to the film and playing air-strings and air-brass and air-percussion was that, to my ear, the pennywhistle playing the "Shire" theme seemed -- how can I put it? a little more "mezzo" where the one I recall from the film soundtrack is a bit more "spinto"? And of course, the soloist wasn't Enya. And sometimes the orchestra played at a volume that drowned out the dialogue -- hence, no doubt, the subtitles.

You must imagine the cavern of Radio City Music Hall, filled with a sort of golden house-light, not quite bright enough to read the overpriced souvenir program. On each side of the stage there was a large ancillary screen, angled, on which, before theprogram started, they played adverts for LOTR-Online and NY Comic.con and other sponsors of the event, including a sort of art show of actors in character, looking just like your typical con art-show. And there was a fellow dressed in Gandalf's robes and hat sitting at the front of the second mezzanine--fortunately he removed the hat for the film. And amidst it all--

There was an immense widescreen with "Lord of the Rings" projected thereon, suspended above a stage filled with five banked rows of empty chairs for a 200 voice chorus and, in front of them, more chairs for what must have been a 100-piece orchestra. In the very center of the stage was a big Japanese taiko drum with a vermilion body, like a beer keg lying on its side, and other curious-looking percussion instruments hanging in their places.

At 6:30, Howard Shore and Doug Adams, the author of "The Music of the Lord of the Rings Films", came out in front of all those chairs and gave their lecture (to a hall with mostly empty seats -- they didn't publicize the pre-concert lecture well enough, I only heard of it via an email from Radio City on the Thursday, and of course the tickets said "7:30"). We learned about leitmotifs *g*, and about the many Tolkien-invented languages spoken by the peoples of Middle Earth. We heard how conductor Wicki specializes in film music, and how he'd put together some tributes of earlier Howard Shore filmscores and understood them so well that when the concept of doing live performance to projected films came up, Shore's wife told him he ought to work with Ludwig Wicki.

We learned that they keep the live music at tempo to coincide with the film using techniques that were developed in the 1930's, and that now the conductor has a small screen attached to his podium on which the film plays simultaneously with the big screen, to help him keep time. (And indeed, during the performance I could see flickering images on the conductor's little screen, the size of a laptop, that exactly matched the movie playing over their heads.)

Then Shore and Adams made their way backstage, and after an interval during which the hall gradually filled to capacity, out came the orchestra, then the chorus.
When the conductor came out, to great applause, I couldn't help wondering how many of the new folks in the audience thought HE was Howard shore.

And then the lights went down and the film started and I was lost in Middle Earth for the next several hours. Every now and then I'd drag my attention back to the musicians and notice the strings sawing away madly or sections of the chorus standing up or sitting down, or see the soloist in her scarlet gown, but the live music blended perfectly with the projection, absolutely perfect timing. The audience managed to remember the performers and applaud the various solos and bravura sections (though I think sometimes they were applauding the appearance of Viggo Mortensen or Orlando Bloom, too).

Next year, same time same station, they're doing The Two Towers!

Sigh. No matter how closely I hew to the model format I downloaded from LJ, it just doesn't cut it. :-( Or does it? Sorry for any repetition in flists.


( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 17th, 2009 05:58 pm (UTC)
First, it just showed the whole text with the (anglebracket)lj-cut text=(quote)words for link to cut here(closequote)(anglebracket)text and images actually inside of the cut in here(anglebracket)/lj-cut(anglebracket) around the edges of the "cut" text, then I fiddled with it a bit to be sure I was following the model exactly and the commands in the angle brackets disappeared but the inside text remained in plain view - is a cut supposed to be visible to the OP?
Signed, Confused.
Oct. 17th, 2009 06:39 pm (UTC)
Hoom Hom - I see that the LJ cut is now working. How to know if it's working the first time around -- that is, which choice of ways to view the recent entries in order to see the cut if it did work -- is still unclear to me. But this is a start :-)
Oct. 17th, 2009 07:44 pm (UTC)
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )


Maggie 7/15#2

Latest Month

January 2011