Monday, May 2, 2011
The bottom half of ASO's season ending performance on Saturday, Gutav Mahler's Symphony No. 2 in C minor, demonstrated the length, breadth and depth of growth our small town symphony has seen under the deft baton of Maestro Kimbo Ishi-Eto.
While the performances of guest artists Jeanine Thames, soprano and Marietta Simpson, mezzo-soprano, were most probably quite able, Ms. Thames looked more the frumpy housewife out for a night of karaoke than a guest artist and Ms. Simpson's mouth looked as if she had a bad taste in it she couldn't wait to spit out. The evening for me would have been no less appealing had they stayed home.
The preparation and performance of the Amarillo Master Chorale and the West Texas A&M University Choirs was up to their ususal standard of excellence.
Maestro Kimbo's careful grooming of our ASO musicians becomes more evident with each succeeding concert. I would have been just as happy had there not been the vocalists or choirs. His conduction and the orchestra's performance of the Mahler piece was the "pi'ece de re'sistance" of a wonderful 86th season.
No matter what some elitist, metroplex snob might have to stay about our band of players, their fearless leader and our grand hall, remember his is one man's opinion and it's the local patrons you are aiming to please. From the reaction of those in attendance on this Saturday past, you are doing a right fine job. Keep up the good works.
I'm looking forward to an even more exciting 2011-2012 season. We can depend on the Maestro to bring to us guest artists playing a variety of unusual instruments (at least in the symphony context-- think erhu) delivering scintillating performances with our ASO players as the cherry on top.
See you at the symphony! aio