Music and Vision homepage Jenna Orkin: Writer Wannabe Seeks Brush With Death - From the heights of greatness (the Juilliard School; musicians Rosalyn Tureck and Nadia Boulanger) via way-ward paths to the depths of wickedness these reminiscences will entertain and enlighten.

 

JUST TOO FUNNY

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A backstage view of the orchestra,
enjoyed by KELLY FERJUTZ

 

If you're an orchestra groupie as I am, (and have been for some 30+ years now) you'll surely enjoy this gossipy, if slight, backstage book. Certainly, Mr Locke usually remains a gentleman, and rarely names names, but the stories are funny, nonetheless. Frequently, the stories are accompanied by charming little disclaimers, such as this one on page 16: 'I wasn't there, so I can't say that this story really happened, but given my experience with professional orchestral musicians, I have no reason to disbelieve it either.' Some of them are just too funny not to have happened exactly as he reports them!

Some of these stories are part of orchestral lore; others haven't yet achieved that status, but surely will do so, soon.

Real Men Don't Rehearse. Adventures in the Secret World of Professional Orchestras. Justin Locke. © 2005 Justin Locke Productions

He is careful about explaining some of the terms frequently used by musicians, and not readily understood by outsiders -- in fact, there's a glossary of some very unusual ones! In addition to the more common copyist, tacet and score.

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Copyright © 8 August 2006 Kelly Ferjutz, Cleveland USA

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