* Notes *
Riccardo Muti conducted the New York Philharmonic in a program of Lizst, Elgar, and Prokofiev last Thursday, and I attended a lively open rehearsal in that morning. The orchestra was in street clothes, as one would expect, and Muti himself was perfectly coiffed, looking foppish in his hot pink sweater. Lizst's Les Préludes, Symphonic Poem No. 3 began the day, and it was surprising how much stopping and starting there was, it truly was a working rehearsal. This was followed by a rather lovely performance of Elgar's In the South (Alassio), which Muti explained was a odd title for him, since Alassio is north of where he is from. The trumpets sounded beautifully clear, and the viola solo came off very nicely. After a brief intermission, we heard selections from Prokofiev's Romeo and Juliet. The orchestra played with exuberance. After one movement Muti commented "What is missing is a sense of dance, a sense of the body that moves," and it was obvious he had a fine rapport with the musicians.
* Tattling *
A hearing aid screeched a few times at the beginning of the Liszt. There was some talking from the students in attendance, and a mobile phone rang during the Prokofiev.