Saturday, June 12, 2010

Ancerl/Boston SO, Smetana: Ma Vlast. 1969 broadcast, during a very audible thunderstorm!

I haven't posted any music for a while, and was in a quandary about what next.
The big pause (not only a lion specialty) only heightened the importance of making this selection.

For those who are interested, I've had a beautiful boy, now 2 months old in the while. He's our first. As I've been engaged with microburst volcanic eruptions and impressive blowouts of the rear chassis, thoughts of which and why and how have come up; choosing and posting has been on my mind just not on the schedule. I do have a ridiculous bunch of music on the mental cue however, and it will continue to be brought here.

[Insert Name Here] and an unnamed sonic cleanup collaborator brought this to the groups,
and I freaked out as usual. It concerns the most beloved work by Czech composer Bedrich Smetana. Here you go:

"A Tanglewood concert...soul-stirring Má vlast 
led by Karl Ancerl (the first complete performance by the BSO) ...[at] the Koussevitzky Music Shed..."

I hope you find this performance as moving as we have here.
Given the Heraclitean flow that my life has been awash in these past weeks, it seems appropriate. What with the fossil fuel-extraction disaster in the middle of the Americas' waters (which happened to white people this time, so the outrage is suddenly more newsworthy) and its possible upcoming climate change legislation effects, the evocative 'Vltava' is perfect.

Check the real thunder and lighting backing 'Bohemia's Woods and Fields' from outside the building, starting from 3:08 and onwards.
It speaks for itself.
The contributor has gotten some wonderful handed-down stories regarding this performance, especially about one of those who

"...attended this concert, and according to this person, members of the
orchestra were literally in tears at the conclusion of the work. You can tell this was a cathartic experience for all involved...", as well as other reports of folks who were, "...told by a friend that he and his wife left the concert in tears."

The sound of water sluicing gloriously at 12:43 is evidence of an all 'round aquavitae-soaked confluence of sound, emotion and nature. The Berkshire storm even enacts a curious reserve in the adagio moments.

I encourage you to look into conductor Karel Ancerl's history, which will further enrich your listening experience of this piece. It resonates still more upon remembering that when this was recorded the invasion and killings of 'Prague Spring' were still fresh in the Czech homeland.

Bedrich Smetana
Má Vlast (My Homeland)

Karel Ancerl
Boston Symphony Orchestra

August 1969
Live broadcast

1 Vyšehrad (The High Castle)
2 Vltava (The Moldau)
3 Šárka
4 Zčeských luhů a hájů (From Bohemia's Woods and Fields)
5 Tábor
6 Blaník

130.83 MB

Play it loud!!!