By Jacob Stockinger
Starting this Friday night and over the next three weekends, the Bach Dancing and Dynamite Society (below top and bottom), marking its 25th anniversary season, will perform dozens of chamber music works, some familiar and some unfamiliar.
See for yourself:
Do you like to listen to the same work ahead of time before going to hear it live at a concert?
Some people urge listeners to do just that.
In fact the Madison Symphony Orchestra often has links to the same works it will perform, and conductor John DeMain has urged listeners to familiarize themselves with the music to appreciate it better.
The Madison Symphony Orchestra is not alone in taking that approach.
But The Ear disagrees.
He generally avoids listening to the same music that he is about to hear live.
He prefers to go into the live event with no preconceptions or comparisons so that it can stand on its own terms.
He prefers to let the music and the performance of it take him fresh – if they are capable of doing that.
It is more like hearing the music anew.
And he does the same with drama. He prefers to see a Shakespeare play at, say, American Players Theater in Spring Green or at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, with no preparation except perhaps some program notes. So he doesn’t read the play before going to the performance.
It seems kind of like eating the same food at home before you go to the restaurant, or watching the same movie before you go to the cinema.
Yet good cases can be made for both approaches.
So The Ear wants to know: What do you like doing and why?
Leave a comment.
The Ear wants hear.