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Messages - Jim Penn

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1
News and Current Affairs / Re: Pacifica Quartet
« on: March 12, 2017, 03:32:24 pm »
Lovely words, Stanley.

The Pacifica's Shostakovich cycle is complete - the individual volumes were boxed up as a complete set a couple of years ago. I don't know why I still haven't got it! They did a complete cycle at Wigmore Hall in 2011-12 - I went to the first half in one week in October 2011 (numbers 1 to 8, plus the piano quintet with Menahem Pressler), but alas my wife was ill during the second half over one week in March 2012, so I wasn't able to hear any of those. More's the pity, the first half was beyond remarkable (their 2nd quartet was one of very best performances of a single piece I've ever heard!).

2
News and Current Affairs / Re: Pacifica Quartet
« on: March 11, 2017, 12:13:03 pm »
In spite of the previous announcement that Simin Ganatra would be leaving the Pacifica Quartet at the end of the 2015-16 season, she appears to have changed her mind, and was still thankfully very much present on the stage at Wigmore Hall with the quartet last night (fantastic performances of a Haydn quartet, Shostakovich's 3rd, and the Ravel).

Shame I didn't enjoy a moment of it, though, owing to a chap close to me and in my eyeline whispering to his wife during the Haydn, coughing fairly incessantly during the Shostakovich, and conducting the Ravel and arching around in his seat like he was Lang Lang. Very frustrating evening indeed.

Still, the mics were out, so I hope a Wigmore Hall Live release will be ensuing and I can actually get some emotional involvement in the performances.

4
Television / Re: Television - General Recommendations
« on: February 28, 2017, 02:35:19 pm »
Interesting to hear Brian Ferneyhough's name pop up on University Challenge last night, in a question asking for the unaccompanied wind instrument for which a number of cited works had been composed (Ferneyhough's Unity Capsule, a 2nd composer and work I can't remember, and Debussy's Syrinx, since you ask)... University Challenge doesn't very often stray into proper "new music" territory!

But as one may reasonably have expected, Paxman (who has repeatedly used the pronunciation Mess-eye-ann for Messiaen) said Ferneyhuff.

Mind you, now I think about it, I do recall seeing some archive material from a BBC general election results programme from the 60s (certainly black and white). Robin Day, no less, saw a result on his screen naming a constituency winner by the name of Ferneyhough - and he too said "Ferneyhuff". Then, after a brief pause: "Erm, well, maybe it's Ferneyhoe.".

5
Television / Re: Television - General Recommendations
« on: February 28, 2017, 12:29:58 pm »
Interesting to hear Brian Ferneyhough's name pop up on University Challenge last night, in a question asking for the unaccompanied wind instrument for which a number of cited works had been composed (Ferneyhough's Unity Capsule, a 2nd composer and work I can't remember, and Debussy's Syrinx, since you ask)... University Challenge doesn't very often stray into proper "new music" territory!

But as one may reasonably have expected, Paxman (who has repeatedly used the pronunciation Mess-eye-ann for Messiaen) said Ferneyhuff.

6
Theatre / Samuel French Theatre Bookshop
« on: February 17, 2017, 04:55:28 pm »
I'm sure there'll be members of the forum that might like to know about this (well, "like" might be the wrong word!)...

https://www.change.org/p/camden-council-save-samuel-french-theatre-bookshop?recruiter=43494195&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=copylink

7
Broadcast and Recorded Music / Re: Sorabji - Organ Symphony No. 2
« on: February 10, 2017, 01:18:13 pm »
Likewise, Bryn - I'm not going to be home in time to try and capture it. :(

(there's no mention of the university retaining a "catch up" copy, but I'm keeping my fingers crossed!)

8
Broadcast and Recorded Music / Re: Sorabji - Organ Symphony No. 2
« on: February 10, 2017, 08:48:02 am »
Short notice, I know, but Kevin Bowyer is giving only the third complete performance of Sorabji's second organ symphony later today, to inaugurate the University of Iowa's new Klais organ. It's being streamed live on the internet, starting at noon Iowa time (18:00 London time).

Here's the link for anyone interested: https://music.uiowa.edu/coming-home/klais-organ-inaugural-concert-live-stream

And here's a little article on the performance: http://www.press-citizen.com/story/news/education/university-of-iowa/2017/02/06/voxmans-school-of-music-kevin-bowyer-organist-kaikhosru-sorabji/97287160/

10
Announcements / Re: Biroc's back!
« on: February 02, 2017, 10:13:13 pm »
Should I get rid of this interloper?

Given that all they're doing is posting an unattributed verbatim phrase from an older post in a thread (a fair few of them from me, for some reason!) and then putting a spammy link beneath it, I'd say yes.

11
The Coffee Bar / Re: What did you dream last night?
« on: January 25, 2017, 08:28:29 am »
Richard Barrett was producing a festival of new music, to be held entirely on the concourse at Charing Cross station. I'd won a competition as part of that, and my prize was to spend an afternoon with Gyorgy Ligeti prior to that evening's performance. I got pretty nervous and made a complete fool of myself by asking him if he'd ever consider re-arranging his Poeme Symphonique for something other than metronomes, and when he asked for an example of what, I suggested "you know, those tick-tocky things that help musicians keep a beat when they're practising", which somehow I didn't realise were metronomes. He asked me to leave the rehearsal room, so I headed back to the concourse at Charing Cross, which was now laid out with tables in a cabaret setting, and there were so many people that I couldn't get to Richard's table, and I couldn't get his attention from where I was because he was in deep and heated discussion with Janacek and Lenin...  :tick:

12
News and Current Affairs / Re: Today's Barking News Story
« on: January 19, 2017, 10:56:28 am »
Not really a barking news story, but the headline pun is brilliant...

13
News and Current Affairs / Re: Today's Barking News Story
« on: January 18, 2017, 01:22:00 pm »
Ouija de Cartes?

14
News and Current Affairs / Re: Today's Barking News Story
« on: January 18, 2017, 10:57:05 am »

15
Television / Re: Sherlock (BBC 2017)
« on: January 17, 2017, 07:20:24 pm »
I thought the first one of the series okay, the second one I thought was terrific, but oh lordy, that last one was a car-crash of a piece of television. Even accounting for a suspension of disbelief, there seemed a complete absence of narrative logic and plausibility. Oh, and the flippant way in which they wrote off the episode 2 cliff-hanger was a terrible piece of writing (dialogue AND narrative construction).

Part of me wants that last episode to be the last ever (the series has generated enough good-will with me that I can overlook one stinker for the sake of the reputation of what preceded it), but also I wouldn't mind seeing at least one more in the hope that they could actually go out on a high!

The biggest disappointment, for me was that Cumberbatch's climactic line at the end of The Abominable Bride ("Yes, Moriarty is dead. And I know exactly what he's going to do next..."), which really seemed to be a peg on which the fourth series was going to hang, didn't seem to feed into, or be resolved at any point during, this series. And indeed it didn't really appear that Sherlock knew anything of the sort!

So, for all the disappointment of the third episode (and I'm remaining sufficiently open-minded to the possibility of it opening itself up rather more on a second viewing in a few weeks time!), there was plenty to like about this series. Nice to see Una Stubbs getting a bit more to do, and ditto Louise Brealey (I suspect I've mentioned on here before that I have a bit of a thing for her, so any increase in screen-time is fine by me, especially when she gets some decent material!). And Toby Jones can do no wrong in my book - his Savile channelling was yet another remarkable performance in a long list, and I hope he gets remembered when BAFTA comes around!

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