No it's not season tickets, but a group (they call it "Create Your Own Series") of four concerts for the year. I pick the four I wish to go. I have another next month on the 20th. Handel's Messiah!!! That should be great.
Great! Handel's Messiah is fantastic! Wonderful for Christmastime...that should have a full choral group, right? How nice....I have a recording I play at the holiday season.
When I was in my late teens and early twenties I was something of an audiophile. I had the overpriced receiver, pre-amp, amplifier, and turn-table with strobe. The speakers... back in the day in which we needed huge magnets to drive the "woofers"... were virtually pieces of furniture... and cost as much. The damn needle for my turntable was nearly $100!! In spite of all this, I immediately recognized the superior sound of CDs. Just the absence of any surface noise was enough to wow me. In spite of keeping my LPs in anti-static dust liners there were always some pops and scratches... to say nothing of the surface noise as the needle dragged across the vinyl surface. Tapes didn't eliminate this as the magnetic components always picked up the hiss of the tape moving... and beside... the general sound quality was far inferior to LPs... and we won't even discuss 8-track tapes... the Ford Pinto of audio equipment.
As Virgil suggests it may be an anomaly. There may be instances in which the sound quality of the LP (ignoring any scratches, pops, ticks, and other surface noise) was better than CD. I have read of instances in which such was the case due to the fact that in rushing to transfer so many recordings from LP to CD the industry did not do the best at properly mixing and balancing sound before transferring the original analog recordings to the digital format. Nevertheless... find the sound quality far superior in most instances... and decidedly so on any number of recordings that I knew very well in the original analog/LP format. Brian is right that one would need to make a side by side comparison before offering any certain judgment on each and every recording... however, I must say I'm not prepared to invest several hundred dollars into the purchase of a good turntable and needle merely to make such a comparison... any more than I'm ready to invest an even larger fortune into converting my CDs into the supposedly better-sounding high-definition CDs. Considering the limited range of sound that the human ear can hear... and the fact that this range begins to deteriorate after one's teens... I somehow doubt that the increase range of sound is something worth the money.
By the way, Virgil... Lucky you! I'm looking into whether the Cleveland Orchestra is performing Handel's Messiah this season. They often only perform highlights as part of a holiday concert. Their choral performances are magnificent, however; after all, this is the chorus founded and perfected by Robert Shaw under George Szell.
Yes Stlukes, I agree that it would be pointless to spend a lot of money merely to make the comparison. It is just that here in the UK there has been for a couple of years a fashion for buying retro-styled sterio players and they are not costly as most of them are made in China. I don't think they are comparable to the equipment that was used in the West before the advent of digital recording but I used high-quality headphones to bypass the inadequate speakers on mine.
I must admit I'm basing it on my turn table I had as youth. That's the only one i've ever had and it was cheap and crappy.
Thanks. I've been to Messiah once before a few years ago and it was great. I can't wait to see it again.
Last night I viewed Ken Branagh's film "The Magic Flute". It was quite good, sung in English; still I did not catch all of the words that were sung, but that didn't seem to matter; one just goes with the visuals and the beautiful music, the flow of the scenes, and somehow you can figure it all out. The acting was quite good, as were the set designs. This music of Mozart's is wonderful and so awe inspiring. The sound is 'huge' and 'glorious' at times, other times touched with 'pathos' and then it gets 'huge' and 'joyous' again. It was a very well done film, quite different actually, visually very sumptuous, rich and mesmerizing. The plot was a little confusing, I need to watch it again. I bought a Region 2 DVD from Amazon UK and it would not play on my Region 2 player *sad*; only had that problem once before. Anyway, I had to watch it on my computer, but that looked great. I need to read the libretto, before I watch it again. Anyone know if you can find those online?
Virgil, I have a pretty good turntable, even though now it is older. I bought all componets, when I assembled my stereo system. I liked doing it that way and you got better products, I thought. Hey, my system is truly about 15, 20 yrs old now and still plays great - think I only had to replace the reciever once and the speakers eventually. Actually my son gave me two speaker he had laying around his garage and he gets good stuff. They are bookshelf ones and sound quite good. I play all my DVD's through my computer now, into the receiver. My son connected it that way; then I get the two computer speakers added, so it sounds better.
"Messiah" is just great. I usually play a CD of it at Christmas.
I didn't know Branagh did "The Magic Flute." You might want to look up the plot of the Magic Flute. I bet if you Yahoo it you will find it.
Did someone say turntable? And here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_magic_flute#Synopsis
Yes, Branagh was asked to do a new English version by some producer; he said he was excited but found it quite difficult a challenge to take on opera; they really wanted his directoral expertise to make it more contemporary; I think he did a fine job; he did not pick actors, but opera singers and he pretty much coached them with their acting. I think there was a second director for the music although I did see some clips where Branagh is directing the singers, as well. It looked like a huge undertaking and you have to hand it to him to take on such a large project. I believe he co-produced, as well...think that is what the credits said. You can see many clips on youtub, both the film and the making of - which is quite fascinating...those always fascinate me, just how they build a movie and performances.
The film setting is updated to WWI. It actually works quite well, Stephen Fry wrote the English libretto and they said that it actually is quite true to Mozart's original text, barring some altered sayings or colloquialisms from the updated time period. As in the Bergman film, it took some liberties to become a new and fresh approach. It was intended for a broader audience, so that people who don't know a language, other than English, would understand and appreciate, and enjoy it. It is more enjoyable to me to see an opera without the subtitles. I own several on DVD and all are with subtitles and I don't think you can forgo them. After a time, I do find those anoying. I bought a region 2DVD and have a like player; but it would not work, so I viewed it on my computer. I must watch it again, because I need to pick up on all the elements, and understand the plot better. The plot is probably a pretty simplistic one...most of the operas are. In fact, Stephen Fry said when Mozart wrote it, it was purely for entertainment and the 'mass audience' of the opera of the day...they wanted to be entertained. Some of it is nonscense and silly, but Mozart intended it to be that way. If you saw "Amadeus" the film, you will recall that many of Mozart's operas were written for commercial enterprize and profit, and often they were a romp or had silly elements in them. Mostly, this one is a simplistic plot of girl meets boy, girl falls in love with boy at first site, and girl loses boy,...and so on and so on...the typical storyline. It is the setting and the music that take over and make it a good show. Of course the magic flute is magic and that is the main key of the story. I really enjoyed it...the settings and photography was very mesmerizing as was the music, singing, voices.....it flowed nicely.
Thanks Lily, that is a big help...I will copy this to my own hard-drive and print out to read.
That opera sounds pretty cool...I need to watch/listen to more. I have The Marriage of Figaro on cassette tape, too. Got it at a thrift store for 99 cents. Oh yes.