JoAnn Falletta went to the Proms over the weekend.
The Proms are England's most prominent classical music festival. Falletta, besides being the music director of the Buffalo Philharmonic, recently became the principal conductor of the Ulster Orchestra in northern Ireland. At London's Royal Albert Hall, she conducted Ulster musicians in Stravinsky, Chabrier, Mozart and a premiere by Elaine Agnew.
That is the Royal Albert Hall pictured above. The BBC is generous with letting us listen in on Proms proceedings and Falletta's appearance is at your fingertips.
It is fun to listen to! The hostess announces Falletta as "the first American and the first female director of the Ulster Orchestra." Introducing Chabrier's "Espana" -- a tribute to Spain -- she also says that one of the youth musicians said that at first, they were just playing the notes, but when JoAnn Falletta began to conduct them, they really felt as if they were going to Spain. That is high praise!
Galway also speaks well of Falletta.
"I have a very good rapport with JoAnn," he says.
Then you hear from Falletta herself, talking about how vividly Galway plays the concerto.
Anyway, enjoy! So much to listen to, so little time.
-- Mary Kunz Goldman