Thursday, December 3, 2009

When the stars threw down their spears

Proximity to the Wednesdays at One concert series at Alice Tully Hall is one of the biggest perks of my job. This week's concert showcased 5 amazing singers. My favorite was Benjamin Bloomfield, a Bass-Baritone, who performed three pieces that were perfectly matched to his personality and stage persona.

For me, the standout was "Tiger! Tiger!," Virgil Thomson's treatment of William Blake's The Tyger (from Songs Of Experience). The dramatic text divines the origins of an animal with an extremely contradictary existence -beautiful but dangerous. I was reminded of when we studied Blake in high school and I think I will remember this quatrain for as long as I live.

Tyger Tyger, burning bright,
In the forests of the night;
What immortal hand or eye,
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?

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