Last night the orchestra had its first rehearsal for this weekend’s Voyage to Jupiter program featuring music by John Corigliano, Johann Sebastian Bach and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. We spent most of the rehearsal working on Mozart’s Symphony No. 41 – the so called Jupiter Symphony. As we played through the symphony and rehearsed different passages, I thought about how powerful it is to hear great music played live – in person. I’ve been staring at the score for weeks, hearing passages in my head, singing some passages, playing others on the piano. Likewise, the orchestra members have been preparing their individual parts for several weeks. Some spots are trickier for one group of instruments than others, but we’ve all given plenty of attention to many details on our own time, prior to when we come together as an orchestra.
I can look at the score and hear it my head – we can all listen to a recording and appreciate how wonderful the music is. But when the musicians all finally assemble together and play the music – even on a first read-through – that’s the moment I first feel I’m truly in the presence of greatness. All the wonderful sounds of Mozart’s orchestra – the graceful melodies, the incredible harmonies, the wonderful rhythmic energy – speak together in a way you don’t hear when you listen to a recording. It’s as though the collective sound of the orchestra playing this music written more than 200 years ago summons the spirit of Mozart. He was there with us in the King Center’s Rehearsal Room 158, and he’ll be with us the rest of the week as we prepare and perform this monumental symphony.
I hope you’ll be with us as well for a program of truly uplifting music. Performances are at 2:00 and 8:00 on Saturday, January 23 at the King Center.