Sunday, June 15, 2008

flicks, 'toons and Mario

This afternoon I played a movie-themed concert with the Players Chamber Ensemble -- frequent readers might remember I wasn't going to play this one, but then I ended up playing it after all. Instead of no, I said "Yes I'd love to, but..." which gradually morphed into "yes".

Anyway, it was a fun concert to be involved in. The afternoon began with some Loonie Tunes cartoons on a big screen, with soda and popcorn available in the lobby. Then we came out and played Rossini's Barber of Seville (after a slight delay for me to get my stool untangled from all the power cords.) The most challenging piece came next, music arranged from the 1931 cartoon "The Village Smitty". I've actually always wanted to play cartoon music, but never had before today.

There was the inevitable John Williams (Star Wars and Schindler's List) along with Mascagni's Intermezzo from Cavaleria Rusticana to accompany scenes from The Godfather. The Lily Quartet performed Astor Piazzola's Tango Por una Cabeza as used in Scent of a Woman, which is a really beautiful scene. I suppose playing live music to a pre-recorded film is a bit odd, and has its drawbacks, but it does encourage you to watch with renewed attention.

The concert finished with music to the Super Mario Bros. video game -- the "Overworld" theme described by wikipedia as:
The famous main theme; a Latin jazz score that matches the bright, cheery and fast-paced nature of the majority of the game's levels.
This was also a first-time performance for me, though I played that game enough as a kid that the music was already ingrained in my cortex. Probably much of this afternoon's audience now shares that condition, for better or worse.

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