Discussion in 'Orchestra' started by Thomas W. Bethel, Sep 10, 2007.
It had to come, either that or they should be wearing earplugs. Just one more way they can kill off the symphony orchestra. Bit down at the moment, I am reading Norman Lebrecht's new book on the "shameful death of the classical recording industry".
Still, this sort of initiative will allow me to sue all the movie theatres I have been to in the last 3 years for wildly excessive noise levels. I watched a new Bollywood film two nights ago, with my fingers in my ears for nearly the whole thing. Like I did for Hot Fuzz a few months ago.
This news item, as is usual, is technically suspect ....
Is that dB(A) or dB Linear? If its dB(A) which it should be when talking noise exposure, then its unlikely Tubas would be as loud as trumpets.
so also sprach becomes also wispered???
I think it all comes down to common sense, and knowing what's going on around you. Turn it down or get away from it, if it's that's bad. If you can't get away from it, then wear protection. I think symphony orchestras all over the world will do just fine after everyone calms down.
I was setting up mics last night for a five piece brass enemble, during their rehearsal. It got painful (and perhaps dangerous) while I was placing some mics in front of one of the trombones & saxes. I kept my ears off-axis for the worst of it, and got out of the "blast-zone" fast!
I can only imagine constant exposure to that if you're sitting in FRONT of the brass section, perhaps as a cellist or viola player. (Apologies to all brass players; no offense intended!) Same with percussion. Some kind of hearing protection should be in place if it's going to get excessively loud and dangerous.
We all slowly go deaf over time anyway, partly due to age. There's no reason to help the process along by ignoring the man-made dangers out there.
I think this is a bit of a no-brainer. When I'm performing and in front of trumpets or certain percussion, I wear ear-plugs. It's still possible to hear your section mates and play accurately with them in. In fact, it often helps to diagnose tonguing problems and intonation issues!
Although, well placed risers or an appropriately tiered stage also helps alleviate these issues as well. I'm sure some people will get all up at arms about it (usually the uppity violinists or oboe players) but we are used to dealing with sh*t from those people anyway, why should this be any different? (Like the time the violinist set his violin on top of my recording gear and walked away not to return until 5 minutes before downbeat. I had asked his stand partner to move his violin for me and when he came back, he gave me a ration of crap for touching his $15,000 instrument. I informed him that his "$15,000 instrument" was sitting on my $30,000 worth of instruments and I needed to do my work.)
not only that, but it's a POS if it's only worth $15k. My client's BOW was worth more than that, last Saturday night. :twisted:
LeBrecht is Hilarious and so is this directive.
Govt. is supervising my loudness and my sex habits?
Sorry, they'll just do a disregard on this one.
David--I won a pair of fantastic RM Williams boots made in AUS.
You guys rock with the footwear--I had no idea.
Plushy, you always make me laugh. Yes the RM Williams are still being well made, did you get the kangaroo hide ones, they are so light and strong, beautiful! They really do put spring in your step.
A few years ago I was recording a live performance of the Eroica Trio. They were in the middle of a fantastic piece of music, I cannot remember which one, but it involved a lot of repetitive tapping the strings with the bows, rather than bowing them, and it was building up to a wonderful climax. Just before it got there, one of the players broke her bow. The performance stopped, of course, and she turned to the audience almost apologetically and said something like, "Dammit, there's goes another one. You know, I could buy an in-ground swimming pool for the cost of one of those"...
The ones I won are brown suede. Beautiful very supportive to my aging ankles. These boots from South Australia outdo anything we have here in the States. I won them on the internet. I never win anything, so this was a pleasant surprise.
Maybe the decline of classical music is because no one can afford the ridiculously priced instruments anymore, and in comparison, they can furnish a very nice project home studio for a lot less, and can afford to make all other styles of music.
I think it's a myth that classical music is "in decline". It's just too difficult for most button-pusher "musicians' today to figure out.
There's plenty of evidence that things have already started to turn around. There's certainly less big label recording contracts out there, but it's the same across the board for the entire industry. The ratio of classical vs. other music has always been low, but in most cities and regions, it's still going strong. No one is getting rich like rock stars used to, certainly, but as an art form and as an industry, it's alive and well.
The price of a good instrument speaks for itself; it's worth every penny. If you want and deserve the best, say a 300 yr old Strad., you have to pay dearly for it. Some of the better players actually inherit their instruments from their teachers, when the baton is passed, so to speak. There's plenty of other mid-priced instruments that the rank and file players all use. There are also many instrument makers out there creating very fine instruments for affordable prices. There are synthetic bows as well as wooden bows as well, though many say they're never as good as the wood.
It depends on what you can afford and what it's worth to you. I know plenty of professional fiddle players who have a "Workaday" instrument for all the so-so gigs (including outddoor stuff, etc.) and their "Recital" instrument.
Recording in one's bedroom is great, it's a wonderful place to learn and get started. It's also a lot easier than being in a conservatory practice room 6-10 hrs a day, suffering for one's art, with no guarantee of ever really "making it", much less making a living.
And, it'll be a long time before a 1960 "Strat" (even if it's one of Hendrix's old LH ones) grows to the value of a 1690 "Strad".
From the web:
Stradivarius violins are known for being extremely famous and expensive as well. A Stradivarius violin made during the time period in which Antonio Stradivari lived is believed to be the most famous and expensive violins. If the violin was produced in the 1680’s, it could be worth more than hundreds of thousands of dollars today, if it were to be sold. If a violin was produced during the period between the early 1700’s up until 1720, otherwise known as the “golden period,” and the violin is in good condition, it is sold at very high prices. A violin produced during this period can be priced at over millions of dollars. Not many Stradivarius violins are sold however, for many of them are owned today by either musicians, or organizations and foundations such as the Stradivari Society. The highest price that a Stradivarius was sold for was $3,544,000, but this was merely the highest price bought at a public auction. The bidder’s was reported to be anonymous. This violin was called the Hammer, and was produced during the golden period, in the year 1707. Before it was sold at over three million dollars, the violin’s price was estimated to be no less than 1.5 million, and no more than 2.5 million dollars. But on May 16, 2006, the bidder bought the violin, and the bid was recorded into history as the highest price an individual has ever paid for the Stradivarius violin at a public auction. Private sales of Stradivarius violins have exceeded this price, however, so the Hammer remains merely the highest priced violin sold at a public sale. [/i]
i had to giggle at the mention of expensive bows... i remember seeing on pbs... one of those antuque roadshows... anyhow this guy's father hda bought a fiddle as an investment ... and the son now wanted to know how much it had appreciated in the 30 some years hence.... the fiddle was appraised as $150 ... dad had gotten himself screwed.... but the bow was now worth $30k.... evedently they had put "just the right bow" in the deal to make it seem like it belonged with this expensive axe....
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