Alpha and I went to a concert last night. We have a subscription to a series of concerts in the Konzerthaus in Vienna, performances of mostly modern works by the Klangforum, which is an ensemble founded in 1985 to perform modern music. As usual we went to the bar in the Intercontinental Hotel, which is near the Konzerthaus, for a drink and frankfurters, which we ate with our hands (the horseradish was freshly-grated and made me gasp) and joked about a group of British businesspeople, mostly men, and chatted and generally had a date. I also had a cup of coffee to make it harder to fall asleep in the concert, because it turns out dissonance makes me sleepy.
The first piece performed was by Debussy and involved harp so it was real pretty. We were reminded of Beta and her harp playing and missed her, and her harp music. Alpha noticed a lot of men with ponytails in the audience, so we steeled ourselves for something artistically significant to come. The next couple pieces were more dissonant, the third piece especially. It was interesting because the harpist was playing two harps at the same time. The composer was present, and took the stage to enthusiastic applause. A group of people near us also booed him, however, which was kind of cool. I had to wonder what that was all about.
The President of Austria was there. with his wife. He apparently has a subscription to the same series, we see him there almost every time, although his wife was there with a friend last time. He doesn’t just show up at the beginning and sneak out, either, he sits through the whole thing so apparently he has genuine cultural interests. How cool is that? It is things like this that make me appreciate living in Austria.
We went out during the intermission for some fresh air. Because we were both so tired, we decided to go home. My wife gets up at 4.30 most mornings, while I sleep in until 5, generally so by 9 pm or so we are both beat.