Saturday, April 5, 2014

Cleveland Orchestra: Mitsuko Uchida's Mozart

Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 18 in B-flat major, K456 (Mitsuko Uchida, piano and conductor)
Mozart: Symphony No. 23 on D major K.181 (William Preucil, leader)
Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 19 in F major, K459 (Mitsuko Uchida, piano and conductor)

If there's one thing the nicer weather has me less than crazy about its the effect spring has on my allergies. And indeed, if my sinuses are any indication, it seems spring hath most certainly sprung. That and my general apathy for Ms. Uchida (its worth nothing that the lack of empty seats in the hall may indicate I may be alone in that apathy) didn't pit me in the best mental frame for tonight's concert.

In the end...or before the end... I didn't even make it to intermission -- finding myself completely unmoved. As Piano Concerto No. 18 droned on I found the rational version of myself promising the impatient version of myself that even if Symphony No. 23 were to be intolerable, with a running time of 10 minutes and no Uchida to speak of I could use Intermission as an escape.

However, Concerto No. 18 continued for what felt like hours (in reality, only about 35 minutes) and felt completely distant and unengaging. Though I've felt apathetic about other pieces, I can't recall having this much flat-out hatred of a Cleveland Orchestra performance. Finding myself unwilling to offer even tepid applause, and with a growing headache [I'm more inclined to blame this on flickering house lights than the music -- and to be fair, house management was looking into that issue and offered reseating--but I had made my decision] I left quickly and quietly before the second piece had started.


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