~ There is only one journey: going inside yourself. ~
- Rainer Maria Rilke


Steampunk your mac ~ Friday, April 25, 2008

Steampunking is the process of taking modern items--things that are clearly contemporary like computers, cellphones etc. and crafting them to look as if they were made in the Victorian/Edwardian era.

Here's a fabulous website that compiles all the beautiful things that do-it-yourselfers and hobbyists are creating in the funky steampunk tradition.

This is just gorgeous.  A fellow made it for his bride as a wedding gift.  It's a mac mini, keyboard and screen.  Exquisite.  I'd never want to throw it away--even once it was totally obsolete! New tech marries old-fashioned workmanship.

::Posted by Anduril Elessar @ 6:35 PM::::



Craziest review so far! ~ Wednesday, April 23, 2008

St. John Passion on Good Friday
Likely the craziest circumstances under which I've had to write a review, bar none--so far. And hopefully, the craziest ever. I arrived a little later than usual, only to learn that the room at the back, beside Terry, the lighting guy, had been co-opted by the CBC to record the performance. I guess national media trumps local media.

BUT, it turned out the viewing room, with the t.v. monitor that they used to have set up back stage for the Record reviewer was no longer there--they'd renovated, realised no-one was using it and ditched it. A frantic call to the Record revealed that they were expecting the review and had reserved the space for it.

So, I ended up in the lobby, watching the review on tiny monitors--that didn't actually show the multi-media presentation (I had to ask someone in the lobby during the intermission about that--what were the paintings and how well they went with the text/narrative. It seemed like they were closely matched). In additon, the sound was faint, and the two women at the vending stalls were gossiping about something or another, and so I could barely hear the soloists--one or two of them sounded strong, but I was in no position to judge nuance.

As well, there was no access to the surtitles that they projected in the theatre--the monitors didn't include those, and even if they did, they likely would have been unreadable. Thank goodness, at least, I am able to get onto Terry's wireless network and from there, the internet. A quick search and I was able to track down a copy of the libretto in German, with English translations beside it. Because I couldn't hear any of it properly, only barely making out the words because the sound was so faint, the moment I lost the thread of what was being sung (i.e. the chatty refreshments servers spoke more loudly or started laughing), it was impossible to find my place. So, I just read through the libretto, and wrote from there.

Hence, the focus on thematic motifs. I felt I gave short shrift to the performance itself, alas--but there was little else I could do. But, I did speak to the editor who has followed up and ensured that we will be forewarned of the future presence of the CBC, so we can make alternate arrangements in the future. Whew!

::Posted by Anduril Elessar @ 12:17 PM::::



Recent reviews ~ Tuesday, April 22, 2008

A couple of my most recent reviews for any who might be interested!

A symphonic adaptation of Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon

This one was rather interesting to write:  I was in the room at the back of the auditorium, watching the show through the glass and hearing it over the speakers as usual (rather than live--not nearly as good, but the only way possible, given the constraints).  

Also as usual, I had slightly less than two hours in which to write it:  the show starts at 8 pm and the filing deadline is 10 pm.  The extra challenge was that the visual artist was also in the room, controlling the multi-media presentation--as was the guy who organized the show and the general manager of the the KWS--plus, of course, Ron, the projector guy (who's pretty quiet).  Terry the lighting guy was in the adjacent room, as well as his daughter--but he was kept busy with the complex light show that was part of the concert.  So it was mainly the other three guys who were all chatting and it was like a private box with a party going on--they were commenting on the show and so on.  It was rather nice to see how really and truly excited they were by it--justly so, as it was excellent.  But, it was also extraordinarily difficult to write a coherent 550+ word review in two hours with all that going on!  I ended up filing four minutes late (yes, at 10:04), so it only made about half of the print editions of the paper.  *sigh* 

But I do actually enjoy the challenges, and usually I'm on time.  I'd say, because of the amount going on, this was a bit of an exception.  

The Wellington Winds' latest concert: Soft Vocalise & Mystic Spaces

This was more straightforward.  I had until 3 the next afternoon to write this one, and it wasn't in a venue where I could have whipped out the laptop and clicked away at the keyboard--it would have disturbed the other viewers.  So, I just took notes and then wrote it up the next day.  Yesterday, that is. I wasn't as inspired as I like to be--it was a good concert, but review-wise, I like it best if I can manage to present some kind of unified thematic motif... something I can start with and then return to at the end. There's a nice symmetry then, I feel. But yesterday, this was somehow the best I could manage!

::Posted by Anduril Elessar @ 11:56 AM::::


P r o f i l e

Anduril Elessar
Susan Deefholts

::my complete profile::

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"O for a Muse of fire, that would ascend the brightest heaven of invention..."

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YouTube Symphony Orchestra @ Carnegie Hall
The Rise of the e-PODs
A Muse, a Genius, a Daemon
Death of the Professional Writer Greatly Exaggerat...
House of Spirits: The New Musical?
Schroeder's Beethoven
You Tube Symphony Orchestra

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