Rochester Symphony a sign of summer |

Rochester Symphony a sign of summer

Carolyn Pope
Carolyn Pope/Vail DailyArtistic Director Eugenia Zukerman and Luc Pols.

VAIL When Christopher Seaman takes the podium in his signature red bow-tie and copper hair, lifts his baton and the Star-Spangled Banner resonates through Ford Amphitheater, one thing is abundantly clear.Summer is here.Im not saying the Teva Mountain Games, lacrosse shootout or the release of the hordes of elementary school children arent also symbolic of the warm months commencing, but theres no doubt that the opening of Bravo! signifies the opening of Vails busy summer social season.

Its not just about the air kisses, baby.Its seeing old friends return whom you havent seen in months. Its having a glass of bubbly in the Borgen Pavilion and catching up with truly wonderful people who love Vail in the summer and celebrate life like few others. Its Olivia and Rod returning from Texas, Marlene and John returning from Michigan, Donna coming back from Maryland, Rob and John from wherever in the world they have been. Its greeting John, Eugenia and Lynne from their winter homes. Its packing a picnic of fine cheese and fried chicken and lounging on the grassy lawn.

Opening night is always something to celebrate. Wednesday, the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra opened the season with some light summer fare of Verdi, Mozart and Dvorak. Pianist Jon Nakamatsu wowed the audience with his technical expertise on Mozarts Concerto in C Major for Pianoand Orchestera, K.467, and following Dvoraks celebratory and spirited Symphony No. 8 in G Major, the audience received dessert with their entre, as Seaman directed an encore of one of Dvoraks Slavonic dances.Afterward, patrons of the symphony series enjoyed the signature opening party of the season at Manor Vail.I have a great relationship with the RPO, Nakamatsu said. We spend our lives playing indoors, and Im always excited and appreciative of the audience in Vail.

It takes a certain group of musicians to tolerate the animated audience at a Bravo! concert at Ford Amphitheater. Nakamatsu said that many artists might not consider crossing the stage to perform, as they are not necessarily the entire focus of the evening. If you attend these concerts, you understand why. Its not just about the music here in Vail its the whole experience. Especially on opening night. Instead of ringing a hand bell to encourage the audience to be seated, a cattle prod might be more effective.

The sound of an empty wine bottle tumbling down the stairs isnt unusual. And a spattering of applause between movements thats right, you DONT clap between movements is the norm. Nakamatsu doesnt mind.The people who come here want to have a good time, he said. And thats all right with me.Vail, Colorado

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