I'd love to talk about why I strongly disagreed with certain aspects of Jeremy Eichler's fine review in Wednesday's New York Times, of the mostly outstanding Peter Mennin concert the Juilliard School of Music presented at Alice Tully Hall on Monday night. (To my mind, Mennin was a much more original and affecting voice than Eichler gives him credit for being -- at least in my limited experience of Mennin's output, which was largely fueled by the awe I experienced in hearing a Columbus Symphony recording of the Eighth and Ninth Symphonies on New World some years back. I still pull that CD out regularly. After this concert, I felt I'd be doing the same if I had a recording of Mennin's seriously rocking String Quartet No. 2, a rigorous neoclassical piece that the Calder Quartet rendered as breakneck athletic drama.)
I'm slightly less inclined to talk about the plodding pageantry of the Met's Aida, which I finally caught tonight. (Salvatore Licitra's Radames was certainly somewhat more alert than his soporific Cavaradossi in spring, at least. But no one seemed especially engaged, or engaging, until Lado Atanelli's dusty looking but manly sounding Amonasro popped out of the clutch of Ethiopian refugees, who otherwise looked like victims of a fairly baked fraternity-sorority Reggae Sunsplash mixer. The orchestra, at least, played beautifully for James Conlon.)
Instead, I'm still trying to figure out how to make this page look as clean and spiffy as I'd like it to. (This look is closer, but not there yet.)
Still, I'm dying to know whose job it was to clean up after the horse that relieved itself on the Met stage during the triumphal scene.
Andrew Imbrie - Requiem*; Piano Concerto No. 3** - Lisa Saffer*, New York Virtuoso Singers*, Alan Feinberg**, Riverside Symphony/George Rothman (Bridge)
George Frideric Handel - Radamisto - Il Complesso Barocco/Alan Curtis (Virgin)
Edmund Rubbra - Improvisation for Violin and Orchestra*; Improvisations on Virginal Pieces by Giles Farnaby; Concerto for Violin and Orchestra* - Krysia Osostowicz*, Ulster Orchestra/Takuo Yuasa (Naxos)