Monday, September 19, 2011

Music and the Great Outdoors

Run Boy Run at Heritage Square
There is something special about live music; sharing it with a community of music-lovers, watching the performers, being part of the spirit.  If you are lucky enough to be outdoors during the performance, it makes the music sound that much better.  I think that being outdoors makes you hungrier...for music!
  It was a big musical weekend for Flagstaff.  Not only was it the 6th Annual Pickin in the Pines Festival, but it was also the opening concert for the 62nd Annual Flagstaff Symphony Orchestra. 

Outdoor concerts with friends--just about perfect.
  I went to the free concert for Pickin', at Heritage Square on Thursday-- Run Boy Run was playing.  Those sweet youngsters had some serious skills.  As I sat there with my son and our friends, I was already nostalgic for outdoor summer concerts.  Can one sit in Heritage Square during a free outdoor concert, watching the sunset, hearing the tunes, and not feel the warmth and draw of our town?

Zoe and me at the FSO opening concert.
  On Saturday I went to the symphony with my friend. It was the concert "Here and Now: Modern Works by Women Composers", and there were 7 modern composers that were represented.  I loved it all, but the piece that became most visually meaningful for me was the one that evoked nature, Hilary Tann's "Leggiero".  Her concert notes say "The first movement, marked slow and spacious, is inspired by Mount Hiei as viewed from Shoden-ji, a temple with a dry landscape (Zen rock) garden."

  Because of this bit of personal history/musical nudge, I couldn't help but set my listening experience outdoors again, this time amongst the Zen rock garden that my son and I toured last year at the Portland Japanese Gardens.  (It was pouring rain on that trip, of course.)

  Precious memories indeed.

A remembered outdoor Zen moment.

  I'm happy to have live music (of all kinds) in my life.  I'm happy to have nature in my life.  And in Flagstaff I get to have both. 

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