As I mentioned in my writeup of the Philadelphia Orchestra concert the other day, the fellow sitting next to me was from LA. Apparently he enjoys traveling around to hear concerts in different halls to compare and contrast the various orchestras and the acoustics of the halls.
This was his first time in Verizon Hall in the Kimmel Center, and his verdict was that the acoustics are the third best of any hall he’s been in. Not bad. The winner is the Royal Concertgebouw in Amsterdam and the runner up is Walt Disney Hall in LA (that was about the only good thing he had to say about LA).
But he also mentioned that one of the things he likes to do is find performances of his favorite piano concerto, which he mentioned and which I heard as the “Brahms organ concerto”.
Well, I have a bit of a hearing problem, have all my life. I wear hearing aids now but they don’t solve all the problems. For one thing I have difficulty in distinguishing between the “V” and “D” sounds. According to the audiologist this is because I have nerve damage.
I may have had this nerve damage all my life. Apparently when I was but a wee tyke, there were commercials on television for Motorola TVs that included a jingle, and according to my parents I would go around the house singing “Motorola Tee-Dee”.
Anyway, there is no Brahms organ concerto, certainly neither of his piano concertos are known as organ concertos, but I didn’t ask the fellow to repeat. I’ve found that very often if I just think about what I’ve heard, I can figure out what was actually said. Not always.
So was it the First Piano Concerto in D minor Opus 15? Or the Concerto Number 2 in B-flat major Opus 83? I ran them through my head and couldn’t figure it out, and by then the moment had passed. So whatever his favorite piano concerto is will remain a mystery.