Finish the music, and yonder comes the Bard. Iâ€™ve loose ends to
tie up for the Southeast Alumni Symphony Orchestra, and some touting
the best theater bargain in Duxburyâ€™s cultural cycle: The Gurnet
Theatre Projectâ€™s free performances of Shakespeareâ€™s tragedy, â€œMacBethâ€
Symphony first. Founder Dan Kostreva and Conductor Robert Babb
developed the orchestra for summering young South Shore string players,
and other symphony musicians to have a chance to gather and
perform. Adults like me serve mainly to fill in the seats and
music parts unclaimed by a kid.
Flutist Annie Herchen has played for eleven years. Her first
teacher was her mom, Jennifer Herchen, a local flute and piano
teacher. Her flute solo (Concertino for Flute and Orchestra in D
major by Cecile Chaminade) for Wednesdayâ€™s concert was beautiful, a
soaring swirl of arpeggios reminiscent of Debussy. Annieâ€™s a
Music Education major at Indiana University, and a dancer as well, an
alumnus of the Pembroke School of Performing Arts. When she plays
the flute, she thinks of dance.
Annie still dances, and along those lines will be representing
Indiana University as this yearâ€™s Drum Major, a tremendous honor for
its musical, dance, and athletic demands. Spinning and tossing a
flashing mace, the drum major of a marching band runs the whole show on
the field, sometimes running the length of the band to reverse their
direction, and always drawing from them their highest spirit.
Andy Chau, last yearâ€™s concert master, rejoined the orchestra this
year to perform a Weber clarinet concerto. Andyâ€™s first teacher
was Joseph Bento at the Henry Lord Middle School in Fall River.
Andy started in the seventh grade, and is now a music education and
clarinet performance double major at U. Mass. Lowell. For Andy,
playing music is â€œlike reading out loud, expressing it in my own way,
in my own words.â€
This yearâ€™s concert master was Rachel Lewis, a sophomore at Barnard
and member of the Columbia University Orchestra. Now get ready
for the interconnections. Rachel is a classmate and pal of Liza
Kostreva (viola). Lizaâ€™s sister Amanda (cello) also goes to
Barnard, and all were friends of Paul Fortini, to whose memory and
foundation the concert was dedicated. Liza and Amanda are both
dancers, like Annie. Itâ€™s called synesthesia, the trait by which
artists often link their experiential senses: colors for musical notes
and chords, motions or gestures for melodies, a panoramic scene for a
whole piece. For me it takes a triangle part and fills it with
the sparkle of sunlight on a dew-drop, or with the Dvorak, a village
square filled with jubilant dancers.
Now MacBeth. Was Shakespeare a synesthete? I wouldnâ€™t be
surprised. His work fills us with images and sensations far
beyond the facts â€“ the words on the page that are all we truly have of
the man. Who among us can avoid a secret glance at his own hand
when he hears the Lady MacBeth cry in the night?
â€œOut, damned spot! Out I say!â€ she shrieks.
Who can stay his thumb from hopeless rubbing at the marks of secret sin, the stain of innocent blood?
The Gurnet Theatre Project returns to the Myles Standish Park (where
the monument stands) to perform the Bardâ€™s â€œMacBeth.â€
Performances are at 5 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Bring a
picnic, sit close, and keep your dogs and children close at hand.
They are welcome.
I saw the show, and Iâ€™ll be back this weekend to see it again for a
review. Iâ€™ll read it first, or at least the SparkNotes, to help
me with the language. On this troupeâ€™s tongues the words dance
and fly like souls in a dream, but I want to train my ear, and to clear
away the mist of centuries.