The Eyes Have it – Fall 2014

Barry Clegg sent along a poem from his book The Beginning of Time to accompany his interview questions. The Eyes Have It Barry Clegg In those bold days I understood almost everything. Pythagoras, the periodic table, and Sir Isaac taught me: this and this and this– thus this!   The chance to study a musical instrument arose. With its complex coils of brass, its heft, pistons, and curves, the French horn enticed me to a domain beyond the reach of Science. A demanding mistress it proved– surly if neglected, when flattered willing to pour forth flowing gold, to weep, whisper endearments, gallop along with the hunt, or brazen it out in a brass band. And fickle withal–triumph and disaster close as two sides of a coin. For a decade and a half we cavorted through the centuries up to ink-wet manuscripts of the day… till on a sideways impulse I auditioned for a first-rate concert choir.   How suddenly splendid to be splendid, performing to full houses, broadcast across the country. The horn was left behind in its dark case.   As a student once, overdosed on engineering drawing, I attempted a portrait of myself. Having no skill for likeness I angled out one stolid forthright persona. To omit the horn would be a deceit. In that portrait after fifty years I detect uncalculated depths: blocks upon blocks of inference and deduction, questioned by that mercurial instrument – and the eyes, one geared for facts and physics, one more open to doubt. Here stood then a young man poised between emotion and the laws of motion.   Untold youthful adventures on the high wire of horn playing ground my musical memories still. Should I ever try a second portrait, the edges would be softer, few lines quite so straight. The eyes are good, though, and the French horn would remain. « Previous Article
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Categories: Fall 2014.

Concert Patrons Provide Valuable Feedback – Winter 2015

Concert Patrons Provide Valuable Feedback by Anne Longmore, Director of Marketing In December, we reported on the first set of results from our Chorus America Intrinsic Impact Survey. Now that we are one quarter of the way through the data-collection for this eight-concert research project, we are working hard to compile and evaluate our results and to encourage all concert patrons to respond. If you attended our Mozart concert in October or Festival of Carols in December, you received a request via a program insert and a follow-up e-mail to complete an online survey. In fact, every patron who attends one of our four subscription concerts this season will be invited to visit an online survey and answer a series of questions – from why they attended the concert and which educational materials they accessed, to their personal feelings about the musical works and the artistic performances. We are pleased to have received 352 completed surveys to date. The patrons who responded provided us with valuable feedback on what is important to them in a concert experience and what questions the concerts raised for them. While all of the feedback we have received has been interesting, these questions, in particular, have provided lots of food for thought for us. We have received questions, for example, about how concert programming decisions are made, about artistic interpretation, and about the experience of singing in the choir – from the amount of rehearsal time needed to how the singers feel about the music. We are now considering different ways that we can share answers to these questions with patrons, so look for some answers coming your way later this year. The feedback we receive on the many facets of the concert experience will help us understand how well our concerts are meeting our audience members’ expectations and fulfilling the TMC’s mission. Survey responses are one of the ways we give voice to our patrons in our planning discussions. This research is not only a great opportunity for us to hear, in a structured way, from many of our patrons, but also an opportunity to compare the responses we receive to those of other major choirs across North America. Our research is part of the two-year 21-choir Chorus America Intrinsic Impact project that runs until 2016. We thank each of our patrons who have taken the time to complete a post-concert survey. We value your opinion on
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Categories: Winter 2015.