Friday, 8 April 2011

Concerts are boring

One of the joys of becoming a grumpy old man is that you can be honest about things you couldn't possibly say when you were young. For instance, while at university and for a good number of years after, if offered sherry (yes, children, we drank sherry back then) I would go for the dry stuff. I couldn't stand it, but this was the sophisticated thing to do, so I did.

Similarly, back then, I used to go to a lot of concerts. Actually I listened to a lot of music, just sat and listened to records, which I wouldn't think of doing now. But the main point here is the concerts. Some concerts I have been to have been brilliant. I pick randomly an Al Stewart concert that was superb, and an orchestral concert at the late lamented Free Trade Hall back in the 70s, when the brass in some Shostakovitch symphony or other was so powerful it made your chest cavity resonate - that's what live music is about and it stays with me to this day.

However, I have also sat through many (many) concerts where I have spent most of the time thinking of other things, or watching the music on the players' desks to see how many pages they have left to go. ('Just one page, hurrah! What? There's a repeat to the beginning?!?') I may be the only person in the world who thinks this, but I think it's more likely that there are others out there of the same opinion, but who daren't come out of the closet. Many concerts are deadly dull. Worthy, certainly. But entertaining? Hardly.

Don't get me wrong. I like music. I love performing the right kind of music. But as something to just sit and listen to, while doing nothing else, it really doesn't work for me much of the time.

Picture from Wikipedia
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