I reviewed Summerfest’s third program for their “An Invitation to the Dance” series for The Kansas City Star.
And I have a beef: Before beginning the concert’s third piece, one of the ensemble member’s spoke about her thoughts during preparation. She went on to say that the piece was “weird” and “wacky,” primarily in reference to the pitch bends at the ends of phrases. After biasing the audience, she then instructed us to “make up our own minds.”
Consequently, when these instances occured, the audience giggled, thusly ruining the sublimely beautiful moments created between the shifting voices.
Would the noveau sonic ground have elicted this same response without preface? Possibly. We never really know what type of response someone will have to a given stimulus*.
I love it when performers and creators discuss their art and their process and preparation. I hate it when the performer feels as though they should apologize in advance.
*The exception being the movie “Up,” in which the creators knew exactly what they were doing in the opening montage, those bastards. Oh, the tears.