21 June 2009

Nothing new under the sun

Last night (Saturday the 20th of June) was our second concert of the year. I thought it went pretty well, considering. Our music was:

  • Mozart, overture to "The Abduction from the Seraglio" (just five minutes of fun, lovely music)
  • Weber clarinet concertino - University 3rd year clarinet student Natalie Harris - she was really good, though she weaved and danced too much, and had a treble clef sign tattooed on her back :-)
  • Brand new piano concerto by Dunedin composer Anthony Ritchie. I always hate contemporary music when we start it and end up - if not loving it, at least loving playing it. Emma somebody-or-other was the really amazing pianist
  • After the interval we did Dvorak 9 - very well known, very moving and dramatic - and a terror to horn players. It was that one concerning which I wrote 'considering' above :-)

Susan always comes, loyally, to our concerts. Last night, even although she had pretty severe back pain, she came. And when she comes, we always do the same thing. She shows up about 6:30PM, after the rehearsal, having bought food from Burger Fuel - they, and only they amongst fast-food places, have gluten-free hamburgers. And we eat in the car.

Last night I told Susan this reminded me of when we were kids and our parents used to take us to drive-in theatres. This was pre-television (for us, and for many families). My parents would bring the three of us to the outdoor theatre. There was a sand-pit and playground up front. The sound was from a little hang-on speaker that you stuck on the side window. There was a marvellous place called the 'snack bar' up front where you bought popcorn, cokes, etc.

That was the 1950's. In fact, for me it was the early 1950's. To the best of my recollection we never went to a drive-in after we moved to Oroville in June, 1954; Peter may correct me, but I don't think we did.

All gone now - or so I thought. Television, and then video tape and DVDs, had driven them out of business. Apparently there has been a mini-revival in the States. And according to Wikipedia there are still some functioning in Australia.

I don't think there are any in New Zealand. I would be interested to know whether there ever were any. As a child I loved going to the drive-in. We wore pyjamas. Kind of being at home but not.

Drive-in restaurants are another matter - some other time, perhaps.

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