Day By Day

Sunday, March 09, 2008


"She Who Must Not Be Named" and I spent an interesting afternoon at the Baltimore Museum of Art. First we and some friends had brunch at "Gertrude's" cafe, then we all wandered through the exhibits. That was fascinating because our friends were both artists and had a practitioner's understanding of what we were seeing. Then we attended the latest concert in the Shriver series. It was a blast.

The first half of the concert featured a solo percussionist, Ji Hyu Jung [pictured above], playing the marimba. She was great, performing works by Eric Ewazen, John Serry, J. S. Bach, and a wonderful, evocative short piece by Olivier Messiaen titled "O Sacrum Convivium".

Percussion is probably the most physically demanding of all forms of musical expression because it involves the entire body --watching a first rate percussionist like Ji is like watching a dancer -- everything is in motion. And her marimba is a big instrument, about eight feet long, which on some pieces involves a lot of stretching for notes.

Here's a short video of one of Ji's performances at the Peabody.

After the intermission she was joined by three other percussionists. Together they performed Paul Lansky's "Threads". When I got home I went online and found a Yale Percussion Group performance of this piece here. To find the performance scroll about halfway down the page. It's in two parts. Take a few minutes to watch it, you'll be glad you did. The same site also has a few more performances by Ji. Check them out -- she's an amazing talent.