AK Child & Family was delighted to have several youth attend Opening Night with the Anchorage Symphony Orchestra. Jayson, the young man who has written extensively about his experiences attending ASO performances in the past has returned home to his family, and our friends with the ASO have made it possible for him to continue attending ASO performances. We are so thankful for the relationship they have fostered to keep us all connected. We thank the Anchorage Symphony Orchestra for their continued outreach to Jayson and to the children we serve so they too can heal through the power of music.
On September 26, I got ready to go to the symphony. I had been anxiously waiting for Saturday to come all week, and now Saturday had finally come. I put on my tie and put my shoes on, and met my friend and mentor in the garage.
My Dad wanted my friend and I to go to the talk they were supposed to do, and my friend and I also needed dinner. So we went to get dinner a little before the talk was supposed to happen. We went to the Dish, a Japanese restaurant with really great sushi. I really like sushi, and so did my friend. As I walked in, I saw a lot of awards on the wall for best sushi. “Man, they must have really good sushi.” I thought.
I really liked the sushi. It was delicious! I was full when I was almost done with dinner, so I decided to save the rest of my sushi. Then I got a genius idea to save the sushi for my Mom and Dad, and also the caviar too. I figured they would like it.
We went downtown towards where the Performing Arts Center is, and my friend and I talked on the way there. We had a lot of catching up to do, because I hadn’t had the chance to do so in about two years. It was fun just talking, but I was excited to arrive at the symphony.
We arrived downtown and found a parking spot in the Easy Parking (seriously, $1 an hour? I wish every parking garage had that kind of fee). My friend parked the car and we walked to the Performing Arts Center.
When we arrived, we went into an entrance (there are so many entrances, I don’t know which is which). There I saw some of my friends from the Anchorage Symphony Orchestra waiting with our tickets. I said hi to them and then we went to the Atwood Theater to listen to the talk.
Tickets to the Symphony
When we entered the room, I found out that the talk was about stories about the conductors, and some of them were funny to me. Most of them, however, were adult funny, and I didn’t get all of the stories. However, I will tell you my favorite one:
Okay, so there was this conductor named Ottorino Respighi, and he had to conduct a piece of music he knew the audience wouldn’t like. He was right; the audience didn’t like it. But Respighi had the last laugh.
You know how the conductor controls how high or low the music sounds? Well, Respighi made the music sound in the tune of a child’s “na-na-na-na-naaa-na!” tune. Here is what the symphonic annotator Jonathon Kramer had to say, “There was, in fact, a considerable booing and hissing at the close of first section, caused no doubt by the stridently discordant trumpets that blare forth repeatedly…the effect is like children’s ‘nyah!’ A friend of the composer had suggested a different ending but Respighi said, ‘Let them boo; what do I care?’” However, after Respighi got the last laugh, the audience became more engaged. At the end there was an enthusiastic response.
Then it was time for the music to start.
Let me just say, the music was AWSOME! I really liked it. The people who made the music was really good at making music. One of my favorite parts was when the musicians played at the very top of the theater. I knew that there was people playing on the opposite side of where I sat (on the left side, right if you are looking from the theater), but I didn’t know (I did suspect) that there was people playing on top of where I was until I saw Randall Craig Fleischer gesture to people up above me, signaling for them to play louder.
Another thing I really liked was the piano part. My favorite instrument was the piano, and I just wish I could play the piano as good as Joyce Yang. You could see, in all of the people that are good at playing music, that they kind of move along with the notes they play. In a jerky motion, it looks like. You could see that in Yo Yo Ma. He is a really good musician, and he kind of moves with the music he plays. That’s what Joyce Yang did.
At the end, Joyce played a song from where she was from. It was called “The song of the irritated cowboy”. It really did sound like one.
I really enjoyed going to the symphony. It was so fun! Thank you! Thank you Anchorage Symphony Orchestra! I really appreciate it! And I can’t wait to go to the next symphony! I really appreciate the tickets!