As for the concert – terrific – in particular soloist James Ehnes, who seemed to be very much in control, and made it all look pretty easy. The program listed him as both soloist and conductor, and he did in fact conduct the Elgar piece (Serenade for Strings), as he wasn’t required to play. However, for Vivaldi and Beethoven (two of his romances rounded out the program) the orchestra were pretty much left to their own devices, and the performance (especially that of the concertmaster) did them a great deal of credit.
So just to prove that every cloud has a silver lining, if it weren’t the unending horror of the Australian XI’s on-field performance we’d have missed this concert, and that would have been a pity.
* this concert scored just 1.5 on the repertoire safety index.
** Q. When the English cricket team tours South Africa, where do they stay? A. At home.