Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment

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Lynda’s Tour Diary pt. 3

Mon Feb 29 2016

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It’s concert day in South Korea.


Sunday 28th February

Today was our only Korean concert of the tour, in the Daejeon Arts Centre. Our bus took us to the venue as it was raining quite heavily, and rather cold. The outside of the building didn’t look terribly appealing in the bad weather:

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Luckily for us it was MUCH better inside:

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There’s a really beautiful large hall here with a fantastic acoustic, comfy chairs, even some folding music stands (important for lute players, as the normal orchestral stands are too high for the audience to see or hear the theorbo, and put a solid sheet of steel or plastic between me and them) and very nice backstage facilities. The refreshments tray backstage was an intriguing international mix:

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No-one seemed very keen to try what looks like a sweetcorn teabag…

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The backstage area also housed some rather more exotic percussion than we normally find in the back of a European concert hall: I’d love to hear these gorgeously decorated drums!

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The concert was at 3pm, and we were impressed to find a quite young and very enthusiastic audience. It was especially pleasing to see a lot of young children in the audience. All went well and it was lovely to play this super programme in such a wonderful space. Ian’s impassioned performance of ‘Scherza Infida’ went down particularly well, accompanied by muted strings and Andy’s plangent solo bassoon. After the concert our bus was waiting for us again, but its interior decor gets more outrageous with every journey!

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It was snowing when we left the hall, and very cold. We split into various small groups to find dinner in town, then back to the hotel to pack for tomorrow’s flight. By the time we left our restaurant the snow had stopped and the temperature had plummeted, so the bit of the snow on the ground was freezing hard and the sky was clear, making a very beautiful scene at the illuminated Expo bridge, just a block from our hotel.

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We leave tomorrow at 8am, returning to Seoul airport by bus then flying to Shanghai. Many of us spent some of this evening anxiously downloading apps, trying to set up some means of communication which will work in China, where Google, Facebook, etc, are blocked. We’ll find out tomorrow if they work!

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