ECMSA: Matt Haimovitz and Tim Fain

The Emory Chamber Music Association’s Cooke Noontime Concert Series held at the Carlos Museum is a bit challenging to attend. First of all, it’s at noon on a workday. Secondly, there are two or three buses of residents from retirement homes who get there at around 11:20a and take up more than 75% of the seats and the remaining 25% are generally gone by 11:40a. So you pretty much have to be available for two hours in the middle of a workday, plus you have to pay for parking at a university campus that’s probably nowhere near anywhere you need to be. Then you only get a one hour concert that is often just a collection of single movements extracted from larger works. Generally, it’s not worth it for me to go but, still, if I have the time then I often find myself there wondering how concerned I should be about my addiction to live music. Today, though, was worth it. I had reason to take the day off and got there around 11:15a and, after waiting in the hallway of the third floor of the Museum with the exits all blocked by the crowd until the doors opened at 11:30a, I was able to get a fairly decent seat to hear what turned out to be a pretty amazing concert by cellist Matt Haimovitz and violinist Tim Fain.
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ASO: Peter Oundjian with Robert McDuffie

The ASO, conducted by Peter Oundjian, didn’t dilly dally┬áthis evening and got straight to the concerto: Philip Glass’ Violin Concerto No. 2, “The American Four Seasons.” Notable about this performance is that Oundjian and the soloist, Robert McDuffie, premiered the piece in late 2009 with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, which had co-commissioned it. The only commercial recording of which I’m aware, with McDuffie soloing with the London Philharmonic under Marin Alsop, makes its way regularly into my CD rotation. Needless to say, I was pretty excited when I found out that it was not only programmed for this season, but that it would be Oundjian conducting it with McDuffie soloing.
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