Friend invited me to an open air concert of the San Francisco Symphony at Dolores Park, with the main theme of “Spain.”
It was a packed event, and people streamed into the venue long after it had all started. It was a wonderful day, with the heat of Saturday replaced by Sunday’s stream of cool fog air.
All in all a success. My hosts had packed great lunches, and wine to boot. I had brought some water, ice cream, and a tan-through swimsuit. And of course my bike, and my cycling clothes, as if to underline the recent ending of the Tour de France.
Of course, I have not seen one stage of the Tour, nor do I know who won besides hearing that Lance Armstrong was rumored to be a shoe-in long before the Tour ended. I wonder how the French felt about this American guy souring their Tour for them.
The theme of Spain didn’t quite work too well for me. While there are a number of compositions rooted in Spain, there just isn’t much variety. Manuel de Falla has written some wonderful music, and so have a number of great composers – but the highlight of it all was still Bizet’s Carmen.
Dolores Park was a great venue acustically. Aside from the bathrooms, there is nothing that reverberates, and the weather in the park is almost always perfect for such a concert. People stream into the park anyway on a hot Sunday afternoon, so you don’t have to worry about the audience.
I found the conductor uninspired. Don’t know why, but it seemed he was a hostage to his orchestra, which did whatever it pleased to do. But maybe it was just the distance and the distraction of friends.
Something to repeat soon, in any case.