3 thoughts on “Classical Driveway Moments: Our Fall Membership Campaign Highlight

  1. careyrowland says:

    I listen to WDAV for hours at a time, four or five days a week. Recently, I heard Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherezade. The recurring violin part, the crescendoing power of the ensemble moved me so much that. . .I had (not a driveway moment, but a) writing moment.
    I put Scheherezade on my laptop and listened as the Vienna Philharmonic inspired me to describe an orchestral moment in the novel I am presently writing. Here’s an excerpt from my scene. Can you guess who the conductor is?

    As if by clockwork, the great concert hall came to an absolute silence when Conductor Jeno Ormand turned his back on the audience. An almost imperceptible smile flashed as maestro established eye contact with his musicians. Then his face turned suddenly intense, with a darty side-to-side movement of his pupils that must have been a signal his players knew well, immediately followed by an instant upward glance toward heaven and a passing nod of the head as if to affirm for them that yes now we are all here and now is the time to do what we have prepared and here it is.
    Suddenly his two arms were flung high in the air and immediately into a blurring descent to both sides in two long, quick arcs. The trombones announced, with urgent chordal brilliance, a boldly solemn procession of long notes in minor key. Cellos answered deliberately their last two notes; woodwinds caressed the dirgeful tones into the beginnings of a slow, harmonic theme.
    Now out of the mists of Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov’s trained imagination, a lone violin emerged, with soulful wailing, long and vibrating, then descending in quick staccato triplets, like a caged bird would sing, and lighting gently upon the full orchestra’s introduction: a captured woman’s tuneful telling of some ancient oriental tale, now arranged for twentieth-century symphony.
    In the audience imagination, if they had read the program notes, the exotic woman Scheherazade would be spinning, through her lyrical telling of it, a nighttime yarn, a story retrieved from her memory, and designed to forestall her death.

    in Carey Rowland’s novel being written, King of Soul

  2. careyrowland says:

    Although it wasn’t in my driveway, I had another “stop the world I want to listen” moment, while listening to Mike McKay one morning, this last week. The ever-allegro Euro-centered world of Bach, Beethoven and Mozart was suddenly expanded with an andante visitation from Yoyo Ma and his Silk Road Ensemble. Perhaps my rapt attention to the piece, which I think was entitled “Distant Green Valley”, was enhanced because I live in a green valley, although it is not distant but rather near and dear to me, up here near Boone.
    Whatever it was I heard on 89.9 from Yoyo and his crew that morning, it seems I have turned a corner in the world of music appreciation. Perhaps WDAV has turned a corner as well, but it wasn’t into a driveway– more likely into a whole new realm of classical expression on our radio horizon. Thank you.

  3. Mike McKay says:

    Dear Carey,
    It’s wonderful to hear that you were so struck and enraptured by the piece you heard on WDAV…I’m grateful that you were listening, and especially so that you took time to let us know what Yo Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble meant to you that morning. “Distant Green Valley” really is beautiful, and I hope that as you continue to listen you’ll hear many more works that have a similar “Aha!” effect.
    All the best, and I hope things are terrific in your personal “distant green valley”…
    Mike McKay

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