For all of its libations (Bulgari aperitivo in the garden all to yourself) and indulgences (summer sales at Prada), surviving Milan's summers can be undignified -- sweating all over your Prada in Bulgari's garden, spilling to your Negroni (the mixed drink, kids) as you swat blood-lust mosquitoes from your cheeks -- although in today's Corriere, such a hot, white-noise summer after a long, wet, surround-sound spring will jackpot an epic fall grape bounty last sipped 30-40 years ago. So while we're waiting for that final whimper of summer to usher-in the historic grape crop (even utilitarian franciacortia), we've headed to northern exposures for intimate, humble, camel through the eye of the needle chamber music.
So where are we at? A half hour car ride from Dresden (which only seems like fifteen minutes if you're in good company), Moritzburg, where the city’s half-way through a two week annual chamber music festival of concerts, open recitals and lectures with a cast of young soloists and musicians who we just learned -- after an open recital at the Evangelische Kirche -- all look amaaaazing in t-shirts and jeans.
Apse as stage and god on scenography with dusky triptych oils, tonight's open rehearsal packed dark wooden pews with a preview of what's to come over the next two nights at Schloss Moritzburg -- Jan Vogler, cellist, one of the festival's founders and current artistic director, kicked off the rehearsal with Jean-Baptiste Barriere's Sonate fur 2 violoncelli, sparring partner Christian Poltera.
We're looking forward to composer-in-residence Wolfgang Rihm's Musik fur drei Streicher; anything with cello's answer to Jonas Kaufmann (in looks, not voice, a broodier prototype) Nicolas Altstaedt; Astor Piazzolla's beat-ripping rhymes; and Messiaen's Quatuor pour la fin du temps with Daniel Ottensamer on clarinet (him of hot brethren), Mira Wang on violin, Christian Poltera on viola and Alice Sara Ott on piano (with her sweet sister Mona Asuka scrolling the score).
What else are we looking forward to? Right now? Three magic letters: bed.