Part 2: Music for the soles
Standing up for concerts is part of the fun of Promming but it's not always easy. Can the dream combination of Bernard Haitink and Mahler make Tristan Jakob-Hoff forget his aches and pains?
It is very easy for a Prommer – by which I mean anyone who actually stands up throughout a Proms concert – to judge the quality of a performance.
These are just the symptoms of standing up for a long time, of course, and not really unique to Promdom. I used to have a summer job working behind an ice-cream counter – a cruel form of child labour that, as well as acting as an extremely effective form of aversion therapy for ice-cream sufferers, presented me with daily opportunities to assume and maintain an upright stress position. Eight hours on your feet and you’d better learn coping techniques, or you’ll crack.
Anyway, the symptoms of standing up for any length of time are present no matter how good a concert is. It’s just that, in the very special concerts, you don’t feel anything.
To be honest he looked a bit unsteady by the end of it, but then again who wouldn’t? It was a beautiful performance, the London Symphony Orchestra playing to the full extent of their considerable ability for a man they clearly respect and adore. The strings in the Adagio finale had an astonishing richness – but it was restrained, withdrawn even.
Thanks Bernie. My feet, legs, lower back, shoulders – and even my right knee – all greatly appreciate it.
- Article Type: | Blog |