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BPO packs Bidwell Parkway

2013-6-16 fantasy island 002

By Mary Kunz Goldman

What a wonderful concert the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra gave Tuesday night on Bidwell Parkway. (Masterful photo above taken by The Author.)

There were people as far as the eye could see! And no parking within miles.

At the end of the concert everyone was yelling for an encore, and so the Associate Conductor Matthew Kraemer and the orchestra launched into Sousa's "The Stars and Stripes Forever." Kraemer turned toward the crowd, clapping. He abandoned the podium. The orchestra was going solo. Everyone in the huge crowd was clapping and that is quite a feeling, as if you are turning the calendar back 100 years.

Other highlights included a brassy "Hoe Down," the Aaron Copland masterpiece made into a crossover hit by Emerson, Lake and Palmer. And Copland's "Simple Gifts." And John Williams' music for "Superman." 

Kraemer was entertaining and free with his opinions, pointing out that the music to the new "Superman" is nothing next to the music in the old movie. Tell 'em, Maestro! 

However he could have pointed out that the old "Superman" theme was totally ripped off from Richard Strauss' "Death and Transfiguration." I keep waiting for someone to call John Williams on that and nobody does. 

Young scholarship-winning trumpeter Aaron Schuman stepped into the spotlight as soloist in the Trumpet Concerto of Alexander Arutunian. Schuman, who hails from Kenmore West High School, is a marvelous young player of that difficult instrument. He exhibited no nerves, up there on stage in front of hundreds and hundreds of people. That is more than half the battle. That is 90 percent of the battle, being comfortable in front of a crowd.

View a gallery here.

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