My Blog List

People I Know

Eclectic Folks

Media Blogs

Politics, Policy Blogs

Page Rank

Check Page Rank of your Web site pages instantly:

This page rank checking tool is powered by Page Rank Checker service

Tuesday, April 08, 2008


I had the TV on last night just before 7:30 pm, when there was a scroll along the bottom of the screen indicating that an Amber alert had been called. I've seen them before and they're always a bit scary, but not as much as this one. The address listed is the school in my neighborhood; indeed, we were at that very school on Saturday, checking out the Pre-K and kindergarten programs. Fortunately, the boy and the man who allegedly took him were found not far away in Cohoes less than one hour later.
Saturday as a very busy one for us. First, we went to a pancake breakfast to benefit the FOCUS Churches food pantry, then to the school. We went to our credit union to put money into an IRA to mitigate our taxes, using some of the money we're going to get from the stimulus package. (Shhh! Don't tell President Bush!!) Then, that evening, we got a babysitter, went to the Troy Music Hall, and listened to an exquisite performance of the Brahms Requiem and other pieces by Albany Pro Musica; here is feedback from one of the singers.
My computer at work uses Microsoft Office for e-mail. Friday, and again yesterday morning, when I would click on a hyperlink within my e-mail, it would look as though I were trying to download an executable (.exe) file. Apparently, the problem was that when I downloaded an update to iTunes last week, I also downloaded Safari, and it did not play well with Microsoft Office. Eliminate Safari, reroute the e-mail - which someone else did, trust me - and I was good to go again.
The big news in the area is that Pat Riley, oh, and some other folks, got into the Basketball Hall of Fame. It's a huge local story because Riley was a high school star in Schenectady; the high school gym there is named in his honor.



Anonymous said...

Date: Monday, April 7, 2008

Albany Pro Musica scales great heights

Special to the Times Union

TROY - Besides being a ravishing and engrossing hour or so of music, the German Requiem Op. 45 of Brahms was the first piece to envision the requiem as something other than a Mass. Forgoing the judgment scenes and fiery wrath
in the traditional Latin texts, the German Requiem uses biblical texts mostly of consolation and hope and never even mentions Christ.

It's this wide and warm embrace of humanity that has contributed to the piece's beloved status. For example, in the weeks after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the New York Philharmonic mounted an almost impromptu performance. A concert of the German Requiem is actually a monumental undertaking and the performance by Albany Pro Musica Saturday night at the
Troy Savings Bank Music Hall was a genuine event. David Griggs-Janower led the chorus of more than 100 voices, two soloists and a 45-piece orchestra in a performance that was often beautiful, but that showed the accomplishment as well as the effort. While it was easy to admire the sheer heft involved
in the performance, it was impossible not to get caught up at least now and then in its deep emotional currents. From this perspective, the most persuasive passages may have been the simplest, if that word can be used for Brahms. Like a keystone in an arch, the fourth of seven movements reaches an attainment - the abode of God - and blossoms with rather unadorned writing.
During it, a woman sitting in front of me wept openly.

The fine soloists served as foils to the dark thick textures that
predominated. Soprano Alison Trainer arrived for the fifth movement like a golden angel and her voice had a divine luster. Her lung capacity was also darned impressive, as she delivered high and long lines with grace. Keith
Kibler, though a full-voiced baritone, was a spectral presence in the penultimate movement, when the trumpets sound and the dead are raised.

Kibler's communicative abilities, including lots of eye contact, came
through even more in Vaughan Williams' Five Mystical Songs, one of two works that came before intermission. Here again he was a seeker on the boundaries between heaven and earth, and his nearly flawless singing made one happy to
come along on the journey.

During the concert's first half, a reduced Pro Musica was joined by the Guilderland High School Chamber Choir. In addition to the Vaughan Williams, they performed Faure's "Cantique de Jean Racine," Op. 11, a lovely and gentle hymn in three verses.

Joseph Dalton is a local freelance writer who contributes regularly to
the Times Union.

GayProf said...

I wonder if anybody is going to actually spend those tax rebates... As for me, it's going to pay some crushing debt (a drop in the bucket, really).