Concert Review: Rodef Shalom

So in trying to figure out what to post this week, I realized that I had forgotten to write a review of the AWCB's yearly benefit concert for a local food pantry. And thus, you have my post for the week.

For this gig, I was lacking my usual stand partner (::coughbloggingpartnertoocough::), so I got the pleasure of sharing a stand with Trombone Andy (named thus to differentiate him from the 200 other people named Andy in the band). Aside from the awkwardness that comes with having someone not understand the inside jokes written as musical annotations, it was an excellent experience to play next to him, and I would do it again! As for the performance, in all it went extremely well -- plus we managed to raise a sizable donation of canned goods for the food pantry, which is the ultimate goal. The only musical complaint that I heard was "the saxophones were too loud", but this is a pretty standard complaint when it comes to saxophones... wait, did I type that in public?

The concert was set inside a social hall in a Jewish temple in an upscale neighborhood, and even though there is no stage or traditional concert lighting, most people in the band agree that this is one of our favorite places to play. The audience sits relatively close to us, we all have amazingly cushy chairs, and the acoustics are incredible. Combine all that with free cookies after the show and you've got a bunch of happy musicians.

Musical highlights: the trumpet section nailing the opening of Shostakovich's Festive Overture as the first sounds of the concert, an incredible solo horn performance in the Rondo from one of Strauss's horn concertos, the trombone section generally not failing at playing swing style licks, and the narrator for the piece A Nation's Strength forgetting (I think) that he was supposed to narrate during the piece and not just read the poem beforehand and walk away. Oh well -- it was a nice poem, and the music could stand on its own.

Did I mention that we played Shostakovich? \o/

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