Think back to the symphony orchestra of yesteryear, as seen in Disney’s 1940 film “Fantasia”: all male, but for two female harpists.
Now take a good look at the orchestra of today: In the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, women players outnumber the men. The numbers were 50-50 in 2011-12; women outnumbered men for the first time in 2012-13, with 46 women out of 97 musicians; and this season the breakdown is 45 men and 51 women.
Things have changed at orchestras all over the country, if not always to the extent found here. The numbers are largely due to a combination of so-called blind auditions and changing societal attitudes...
In a world increasingly ruled by cynics knowingly offering the lowest quality goods and services secure in the knowledge the masses will meekly grumble and pay up, I've had the opportunity this week to experience 2 art realms of near human perfection.
The first, a capital A art, is live theatre. Certainly, bad theatre and bad art exist, but never is shlock the artist's goal. Live theatre is transcendent. Transforming empty space to somewhere deep within your soul, via a gesture and a few lines of dialogue is one of life's eternal mysteries. Each performance, repeated however many times during its run, is unique. Human perfection, while never achieved is the objective, the target not often missed. The second sphere of performance art lies in the world of fine dining. Mrs. T and I had perhaps the finest meal of our lives at chef John Besh's Restaurant August last Friday. We arrived early in the evening to have an opportunity to talk with our waiter before the evening performance.
Imagine making the same dish many times each day, knowing each must taste exactly alike the last not only today but forever. Sounds boring until you try it. The cutting, chopping, plating, presentation were exquisite. The front of the house true professionals. I'd return in a heartbeat.
A Tasting Of Farmers Market Vegetables
apple and parsnip soup
salad of charred broccoli
Landrem citrus, shallot, cotija cheese
spring pea yard egg raviolo
carrot and brown butter
medallions of blackened beets
fresh cheese, charred tomatillo and jalapeno
Meyer lemon souffle tart
lemon curd and gingersnap ice cream
market vegetable chop salad
with petite herbs and champagne vinaigrette
Gulf snapper "courtbouillon"
shrimp, blue crab, and jasmin rice
Soon our local farmer's markets will reopen. Until then....