2015/16 Concert Season: Salon Concert

This is apparently an NSO tradition: the salon concert to kick off the season and/or celebrate the release of the program for the upcoming year, and I was thrilled to have been included. The program is below, followed by some thoughts I had during the program, followed by a recap. click here for a readable version I didn’t know much about it before it was mentioned to me, and to be perfectly honest, it seemed like something I wouldn’t be too interested in. I’m not a fan of medleys or performances of excerpts and all that, and this ‘salon concert’ … Continue reading 2015/16 Concert Season: Salon Concert

Concert Review: NSO- Symphonic Milestone: Bruckner’s Magnum Opus

It’s a lot of music. This concert marks the end.  It was the last completed symphony that Bruckner wrote, and it is the last concert of both the NSO’s season and the last concert of the month, thus beginning a long four-month stretch of no concerts at our National Concert Hall while it gets some renovations or something. I’ll be eager to see it in the fall. I can’t imagine it’s getting a huge makeover or anything, but who knows? It was a large crowd last night. Even from the downstairs entrance I went in to have dinner downstairs beforehand, … Continue reading Concert Review: NSO- Symphonic Milestone: Bruckner’s Magnum Opus

NSO: Symphonic Milestone- Reflections on War

Back to symphony hall less than a week since Eroica for another fantastic performance, again conducted by Maestro Gunther Herbig. The title ‘Reflections on War’ (slightly different in Chinese: 烽火蕭八) was eye-catching. I read somewhere in a program or website for the concert that it was to commemorate the 70th anniversary of World War II. Before reading up on Liszt’s Les Preludes, I wouldn’t have seen or heard or thought of any association with war, but it was an interesting contrast, in many ways. The program was also heavily weighted toward the second half, obviously. While Shostakovich’s eighth is a massive … Continue reading NSO: Symphonic Milestone- Reflections on War

NSO: Symphonic Milestone- Eroica

This was a last-minute and somewhat messy plan. I’d seen the program for this concert ages ago and at the time, wasn’t able to attend. Some recent schedule changes meant I was free, but by that time I’d entirely forgotten about it. I ended up buying my ticket only a few weeks ago, kind of late relative to how early I try to get my hands on most tickets.  I saw NSO and Eroica, and that was enough. I was at the ticket counter to buy a ticket for another show anyway, and there were still seats. On the ticket … Continue reading NSO: Symphonic Milestone- Eroica

Concert Review: NSO: Slavonic Series- A Hero and a Witch

with Steven Isserlis Spoiler: the highlight was that I got to meet Mr. Isserlis after the concert. He is a very nice human.  Sunday afternoon concerts always seem… less formal. There’s something about an evening event that makes it seem more… well, formal. In any case, I’d bought this ticket a month or more ago, prior to some recent schedule changes, and had to adjust my affairs to be able to attend, but boy was I glad I did. I’ve mentioned before that concerts are one of the few places that my constant internal “what do I need to be … Continue reading Concert Review: NSO: Slavonic Series- A Hero and a Witch

Concert Review: Treasures from Eastern Europe

 or 斯拉夫系列:東歐瑰寶   I have pretty much fallen in love with our biggest symphony orchestra, the National Symphony Orchestra (translated from the Chinese: 國家交響樂團, but more often referred to in English as the Taiwan Philharmonic). I’d heard them in the past, but the real moment was hearing them perform Mahler’s ninth back in September. It was… almost spiritual. Just wonderful, and so I’ve been eager to attend as many of their performances as possible. This performance was the orchestra I’d come to love with a special guest conductor. Just as 呂紹嘉 seemed perfectly at home conducting Mahler and Schoenberg after … Continue reading Concert Review: Treasures from Eastern Europe