Saturday, September 18, 2010

Gershwin Concert at Meyerson Symphony Center

It had been a long long time since we went to a concert the last time. One reason was that kids were too young to sit quietly in a classical music concert. Now they are growing up, especially Justin is very into classical music, opera. He was all excited when a friend invited him to a opera. He was also very pleased to go to the classical music concert at National Centers for Performing Arts when we were in Beijing, China. Lily and I know that it is time for us to have some regular formal cultural activities for him and the whole family.

I receive ample information on DFW art/cultural events from my daily listening to classical music on WRR101. I pass on the information at dinner table. ...The Saturday on August 28th, our family went to Meyerson Symphony Center at downtown Dallas for a concert of Gershwin favorites.

We donned formal dresses. A black dress for Lily, a suit for Justin and me. White shirt and dark red tie for me; black shirt, silver tie for Justin. Nick wore a polo shirt and black long pants. We went to the Meyerson early at 6:30pm for an 8pm concert to avoid rush, and to look around the center inside and out.


Meyerson Center is located at Art District of Downtown Dallas, an elegant building in an area crowded with buildings. There is a pretty large tree covered court yard at one side of the front of the building, with a couple of sculptures. The sound of running water overflowing a wall suppress the noise from highway.

The inside is grandeur. Entrance hall is tall, open and very welcoming. Partial glass roof reveals the outside world. The concert hall itself is quite compact. A unique feature is that it has seats for audience from the back of the playing platform, and upper level decks for audience are so steep guard rails were installed.

The concert

This concert was a part of Dallas Symphony's Pops series with Marvin Hamlisch as conductor. It was well attended, the concert hall was about 80% occupied per my estimate. The audience was mostly older adults, with scattered young faces. We were the only group with youngsters in the section. The conductor was well aware of the scarce of young audience. He purposely talked to a couple of teenager audience he saw during his comments between performances.

The choice of this concert was excellent for Nick by chance. Since this was a pops series, the conductor made educational comments between the performances. His dry humor, sometimes funny comments made it interesting to him. He wrote in his weekly journal "It was dark, gloomy and all the light was focused on the stage. The first song played was Porgy and Bess. It was a wonderful selection, but some parts were incredibly loud and some parts were very soft. The next song was “Swanee” there was a sing along, and if anyone sang, all of it was drowned out by the music. The next one I remember is Rhapsody in Blue. The conductor told us about it and then for the next 20 minutes we listened them play, it was incredibly smooth and the pianist Kevin Cole helped a lot. It was light and filled with happiness and I listened excitingly."

We are used to outdoors. It was great to have a formal indoor culture event for a change. All of us enjoyed the concert.

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