Three weeks in Portland, Oregon restored some sanity and perspective. Through the generosity of Susan Smith at Lewis and Clark College, I practiced contentedly for my entire time there.
ICE plays Mostly Mozart this month and then goes back to Brazil–both without me–but we’re all heading to Paris next month. In Portland I learned the Webern arrangement of Schoenberg’s first Kammersymphonie for the Paris concerts, and I was astonished by the piece’s density, economy, variety, and eccentricity. Now, I’m reviewing Pierrot Lunaire–it’s been a long time since I played it–and the other scores we’ve programmed for a packed few concerts there, including Gerard Grisey’s amazing Talea.
The woods of the northwest are different than any I’ve spent time in, and different from the Adirondacks, my first love. When I was in Mount Tabor Park in Portland, where I walked most days this last week, I thought: this is the forest for this time in my life. It was meant for me for now, and not for any other year. Of course it’s meant for thousands of other people too, and for longer than I could experience it.