August 5, 2014 Article by Dave Read
The 2014 Tanglewood on Parade Gala Concert featured Gov. Duval Patrick reciting This Difficult Song: The Star-Spangled Banner at 200, and Maestros Stephane Deneve, Keith Lockhart, Andris Poga, Leonard Slatkin, and John Williams conducting the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Boston Pops, Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra and students from the Boston University Tanglewood Institute performing a program of music by Aaron Copland, Shostokovitch, George Gershwin, John Williams, Dave Brubeck, and Tchaikovsky, whose 1812 Overture was the grand finale.
Following an afternoon of student ricitals in Ozawa Hall and elsewhere on the vast Tanglewood campus and the gradual accretion of music patrons and fancy picnic fanatics assembling on the Lawn, a delightful Berkshires summer afternoon quickly morphed into a dark and story night! Lawn patrons were evacuated from their water-logged encampments, invited to shelter in the Koussevitsky Music Shed, where they crammed the rear colonnade and side aisles. Perhaps to allow time for blanket-wringing-out and candelabra-wiping-off, the concert was delayed until 8:55, although the Fanfares by TMC Fellows were performed on time at 8.
Blue Rondo a la Turk in new symphonic arrangement
One highlight on today’s concert was the Boston Pops performance of Dave Brubeck’s brilliant Blue Rondo a la Turk, in a new arrangement that they commissioned from son Chris Brubeck. Pops conductor Lockhart introduced the number by telling the audience that Brubeck was rather quizzical when first asked about a symphonic arrangement for his father’s singular jazz classic. But then he got to work and the result, judging from tonight’s scintillating performance by Lockhart and the Pops, is a piece bound to only broaden the audience for the original.
Intermission was shortened and a few pieces were deleted from the program, and one added – William’s Theme from Raiders of the Lost Ark, which was received with an extra round of applause. The truncated program caused no diminution at all in its entertainment value, though; rather the audience seemed to have loved the concert and then were happily surprised and thrilled by the fireworks that followed. Proceeds from this concert go to support the Tanglewood Music Center.