Symphony Stretch

It all started when I got a postcard advertising the Dallas Symphony Orchestra’s concert featuring The Pines of Rome, which I thought I remembered Brent mentioning. So I texted him: Isn’t “Pines of Rome” your favorite piece?

He answered right away. Yes!

I wasn’t familiar with the piece and couldn’t even pronounce the name of the composer (Respighi), let alone recognize it. Besides, the word “Rome” suggested a heavily militaristic piece about conquering the ancient world. But this was a symphony, after all, not a gladiator movie. How bad could it be?

Here we are with the Meyerson Symphony Center in background

Here we are, the Meyerson in background

For Brent, I could stretch my musical tolerance. I suggested a date.

He bought tickets AND made dinner reservations. Already, a bonus for venturing outside my comfort zone a little.

The big date was last Friday.

We had a fabulous dinner at Mesa Maya. Still drooling over the salsa and the brisket enchiladas.

I love the bare trees softening those tall buildings.

I love the bare trees softening those tall buildings.

We got downtown in time to sit and admire the city lights from the Meyerson’s courtyard, then went in for the concert.
The imposing concert hall as the orchestra began to assemble

The imposing concert hall as the orchestra began to assemble

First the orchestra played a modern piece that I couldn’t get into. Then a Beethoven, much of which sounded familiar.

At last, the centerpiece of the concert. According to the program notes, the first movement represented children playing under the pines on a sunny day, the second a funeral at a mausoleum, the third a “nocturne” (think “lullaby”) and the fourth, the army marching (told ya!) along the Appian way at dawn.

To my surprise, I enjoyed every bit of the Respighi. The first sunshiny movement especially fit its description, with lots of loud brass and twinkly chimes that almost seemed to brighten the physical light in the concert hall.

I’m not sure whether I’d yet call “Pines of Rome” my favorite, but it sure was fun getting to know Brent’s favorite. I’m glad we went.

Your turn: How have you taken a little risk to stretch your horizons? Were you glad, or sorry? Do tell in the “Leave a Reply” box below!

Thanks for reading,

About Jan C. Johnson

Welcome! If you like food, reading, laughing over life's little disasters, and maybe thinking about the bigger things of life, you have come to the right place. Besides blogging, I write humorous fiction, though real life tends to leave fictional humor in the shade. But I'm not a total goofball. No, really. I'm also working on a biography project. I live in North Texas with my husband, Brent. We enjoy bicycling, Mexican food, and traveling to visit our kids and grandkids.
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