The Chicago Symphony Orchestra / Ricardo Muti

I haven’t seen Ricardo Muti conduct since my college days in Philadelphia. On this occasion he was conducting The Chicago Symphony Orchestra performance of Scriabin’s Symphony No. 1 and Prokofiev’s Alexander Nevsky at Carnegie Hall. I held my hands and my breath tight throughout the beginning of the Scriabin. The music was delicate and strong and could fall either way easily but Muti and the orchestra held true to the tension. I got the distinct feeling that this is the best of us. People are focused on little screens and seemingly anything else to escape where they are nowadays. It seems so to such a degree that I begin to lose sight of people as potentially deeper, more insightful, more sensitive, more creative, more helpful, more loving than the current mindless consumerist society connotes. It can be lonely grasping the beauty of a musical passage when those around you slumber. I suppose that is the nature of beauty though….passing, ephemeral. The power of the Prokofiev was exhibited by the managed chaos of the piece. I suspect Prokofiev was perhaps a bit of a madman. I feel very lucky to have heard some of the most amazing music in my life at Carnegie Hall. The sound is amazing there, whether a solo piano concert of Maurizio Pollini or a full orchestra and choir. Music really makes life bearable. Til next time dear reader, thanks for reading!

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