Here we are, retired, on fixed incomes, but hungry for music. This is what to do. Go to the Juilliard Box Office at 165 West 65th Street, between Broadway and Amsterdam. In front of you is a board with all the free concerts listed. Stand on line with other savvy New Yorkers and get your tickets for orchestral, vocal, chamber music and jazz.
We did and had the pleasure of hearing the senior Juilliard Orchestra, the equivalent of many a professional group, playing a program of Latin music from Mexico and South America. Their conductors are always top pros, in this case, Carlos Miguel Prieto, (juilliard) the leader of the Orquesta Sinfonica Nacional de Mexico and music director of the Louisiana Philharmonic, who led the musicians in a bravura performance.
The programs are inventive and adventurous, as opposed to the standard fare from the major orchestras that I admit I like. In fact, it was Rory who sent us to this, drawn by the the Ginastera harp concerto and the fiery Revueltas’ Sensamaya.
(Katherine Siochi wins 2016 USA International Harp Competition)
I loved the first piece, a premiere full of orchestral color, by Reinaldo Moya; the last piece, also a premiere by Gabriela Ortiz, tore the house down.
Because these gifted students study the music as part of their curriculum, they get to rehearse a lot and as a result reach a high level of artistic brilliance. No regular orchestra could afford to produce a festival of six different programs of Latin music without breaking the bank, but here at Juilliard, they can. Which means we the public benefit. Do not imagine you are hearing second rate stuff; this is the real thing. Go early and often to see what is on offer; don’t be surprised if you find yourself in a sold out performance of music you might not have heard otherwise.