Grande Ronde Symphony Orchestra

Last night I enjoyed a symphony concert with one of my piano students.  The program was Schumann’s Piano Concerto in A minor and Franck’s Symphony in D minor.  Our small town symphony has a tradition of bringing some of the greatest piano concertos to the stage. 

I like to describe a concerto as a duet between a solo instrument and the orchestra.  The piano (solo instrument, could be cello, violin, oboe, etc.)  will play a melody and the flutes (horns, strings, etc.) will play it back to the piano.  There are moments when the piano plays alone and the orchestra plays alone, but mostly they weave strands of melody in and out and around the varied instruments.

Last night’s concert was an unparalleled opportunity for a music lover in a small town in Oregon to see and hear a world-class artist.  Our guest artist is from Monterrey, Mexico, and has played in Moscow, Vienna, Los Angeles, and Caracas.  We had seats in the second row, with no one in front of us.  I could feel the vibrations in my bones.  There is nothing like live music.

You can see a sample of the Grand Ronde Symphony playing (not last night’s performance, but Tchaikovsky’s wonderful piano concerto) at this site.  Scroll down to GRSO and click for the full image.  The video is twelve minutes but watching the first five minutes will give you a feel for how blessed I am to live where amateur musicians play for the love of it. If you have unlimited time, the other videos are nice.  Wallowa Lake is the gold nugget of our region (and the setting for The Shack); the video for Eagle Cap Excursion Train traces our drive to church every Sunday.

If you only have a minute, watch this video and get this lovely melody in your bloodstream today.


13 thoughts on “Grande Ronde Symphony Orchestra

  1. Oh, I’m with you!  Live music—there is just nothing like it.  Getting to see musicians perform, getting to hear the music, getting to feel it—oh, it’s one of my favorite things. It is such a blessing to be able to go to the symphony.

  2. Most lovely!I am ashamed to admit that I dont take enough advantage of the nearby opportunites.  I dont have to travel into Atlanta for good, live music, as there is a small, private, Methodist college within 15 miles where there are exquisite performances.Interesting that you mention The Shack, which I am refusing to read, but am not hesitating to share Tim Challies’s excellent review.You know… we are all dying to know what you told those young mothers about reading to their children.  I’ll bet you had a room full of converts!

  3. @hiddenart – You are so kind, Dana.  I am still working on how to share my talk.  I have 8 pages of text which is a very long blog post.  I don’t know anything about Google Documents, but that is another possibility.  I didn’t have it taped because it was a small gathering in a home and didn’t seem appropriate in that context.  The most encouraging response was from the non-readers, whose engines got revved up to read.  Several of them had never read the Little House books (or had them read to them).  Later when my friend told me that in the presence of his husband, he said, “Well I didn’t come from a reading family either, but even I read the Little House books!”  It was a funny moment.  As a man, Curt likes the Little Britches books better than the Little House books.I’m also toying with a Top 10 list of picture books and chapter books.  You know, if you read nothing else to your kids, at least read this kind of thing.  I still need to get that together. 

  4. Please DO NOT FEEL RUSHED to do this, i.e. post your talk.  We say these things to compliment you to the highest degree.  We are all so impressed, but certainly dont want to create more pressure.  I trust the Lord will provide the right time and moment for this all to *come out* :)It must be an area sensitive to me… kind of like eating dinner together every night.  Keeping the habit produces huge rewards, AND the meal can be very simple (not take lots of time to prepare).Applied to reading to our children…. it comes in many forms with many faces, and in all situations.  Growing up, we did not have a family read aloud time, but somehow we are all readers.Sorry to monopolize here 🙂

  5. Did you go on Valentine’s Day (they played at EOU Saturday, BMCC on Sunday) to hear Matt Cooper do Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto with the Inland Northwest Symphony Orchestra? Fabulous! That’s what I got to do for V-Day! Sit back and listen and just enjoy! That’s a REAL treat. I know several who play with GRSO, they seem to really enjoy the conductor, Alejandro. I’ve never had the pleasure to watch him work.

  6. I was tied up both days and missed Matt.  I miss Rachmaninoff.  You know I dream of studying with him some day.  Matt, that is. Some day….  Leandro conducted The Messiah when I sang in that.  I found his instructions a little too vague and wasn’t sure what to think.  But I’m converted!  He has taken that orchestra to places I never imagined they could go.  They are playing tough music reasonably well.  He pulls good stuff out of them.  And they obviously love to play under him.

  7. Now here’s something you didn’t know about me, Carol: my piano teacher growing up (from age 5-18) was Russian and studied under Rachmaninoff! I was just so awed when she told me that, rather nonchalantly, one time!Also, what do you think of the Betsy/Tacy books? I loved them, and read them as a young teen, and again as a young mom. Out of curiosity, how much were tickets to the concern you went to? I wonder how much a ticket to go hear Danny sing is??

  8. haahaahaa! I just reread what I’d written. Here’s a case of thinking one thing and typing something else! I meant Leandro, of course and it came out Alejandro! I wonder why? I’ve heard that vagueness from others but they do love him. I had to pass up a chance to play with them in Dec, the first clar was going off to her anual Hawaii month, and they were looking for someone to cover the second part but I was tied up with Inland Northwest, covering for her there, so had to pass, darn. Like you, some day . . . I think you have to rely on feeling rather than controlled conducting with him, that’s kind of an international style, I’ve seen other conductors from countries not the USA and it seemed vague. It’s almost a distinction between good and world class, both with the conductor and the orchestra, if you can communacte well and produce well with out being completely articulate in expressing and recieving. Studying with Rachmaninoff WOULD be (have been) pretty awesome!

  9. @LimboLady – I have to get my heartbeat back to normal before I can answer the rest of your questions.  I love Betsy/Tacy books, but didn’t come across them until I was an adult.  The tickets to the concern (giggle) were $10 and $1 for my student.  I’m not sure if the ticket was so cheap because she was a student or that she was in the Youth Symphony.  How was Midsummer?

  10. It was hilarious–loved it. Even though it’s sometimes hard to follow all that Shakespearean English, it’s easy to follow the gist of what they’re saying. The guy who played Puck was great. Chrissie enjoyed it, too.

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