Thursday, November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving - Allegro - New York Philharmonic

Thursday==>It is a gray, overcast and cold Thanksgiving Day here in The Big Apple, The Greatest City In The World. At 8:00am the temperature was 37º, with wind chill it was down to 33º and there is a steady wind. 

But, this is so much better than yesterday, which was really ugly and nasty, with cold rain and the first snow of the season, that lasted all of the day and most of the evening. Totally yucky.

Of course, your favorite blogger was out and about in the elements because he had an entertainment doubleheader, one event downtown and the other uptown.

The TOTALLY INSANE thing about yesterday was that when the day was finally over Billi Pod had recorded ... gasp ...  5.05 miles on his WeightWatchers Pedometer.

TOTALLY INSANE ... but then ... it is Billi Pod here in The Big Apple, so what did you expect?

OK ... enough about the weather ... let’s move on ...

As I write this posting The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is underway and ... no ... I didn’t even consider going outside to watch it - been there, done that. In fact, Billi Pod isn’t even watching it on his 42” flat screen TV, instead, he is listening to one of his favorite oldies radio stations, Q104.3, as they are doing their annual countdown of 1,043 No. 1 songs, from A to Z.

The morning papers reported the possibility of Ferguson protesters attempting to disrupt the parade. That would certainly suck.

Oh well ...

After I post this for you loyal and faithful readers and followers I will get all cleaned up and head out to the Upper Westside, 72nd Street and Broadway to be precise, for Thanksgiving Dinner with some of my AA buddies. This is the 6th consecutive year we have been together for this event that always turns festive.

As I have previously reported ... we have developed a kinda unique tradition. What is it, you newbies are no doubt breathlessly asking? 

Well ... newbies ... here it is ... by agreement, when you arrive at the posh Upper Westside apartment you must, repeat MUST turn off your cell phone - not turn it to vibrate, but TURN IT OFF.

It is then placed in a drawer that is then locked and remains locked until we all get ready to leave the apartment. There is no running out to check for messages etc. Nothing. Total 100% disconnect.

As might be expected this is harder on some than on others, but since it is now an express condition of being one of the “group” and has now become a “tradition,” it is somewhat easier to deal with.

This means that Billi Pod will be unreachable from approximately 12:30pm to 5:00pm.

Yes, it will be food, friendship, fellowship and lots of football. Folks, it doesn’t get any better than this.

At the moment I am not sure what, if anything, I will do for the evening. Right now my gut tells me that I will just come on back to the warm and cozy confines of PHC and watch some more football. Time will tell, as “they” say ...

So ... now ... let’s move on to Billi Pod’s report cards on yesterday’s entertainment doubleheader, starting with ...

The Off Broadway musical ... 

ALLEGRO, this revival of the little known 1947 Rodgers and Hammerstein musical follows the story of Joe Taylor, Jr. from cradle to early manhood in this loving and wise exploration of America’s coming of age, as seen through the eyes of a young physician learning about the mysteries of life and death==>B

There is a lot to like about this show ... but ... having each of the actors also playing and carrying instruments majorly distracts from an otherwise interesting and involving story line.

Now, don’t get me wrong, the individual cast members do excellent jobs playing their instruments and some of them play multiple ones ... it just has a mega-contrived feeling and it interferes with the physical relationship(s) between the characters.

In the name of full disclosure I must tell you that Billi Pod was less than enamored with the Broadway show ONCE, that also uses the same actors-with-instruments bit.

The stellar multi-talented cast is headed by Malcolm Gets as Dr. Joseph Taylor, Sr. and Claybourne Elder as Dr. Joseph Taylor, Jr.

The house was 95% full and seemed to be very much into the show.

Billi Pod says==>yes, it is worth seeing.

It is playing at the Classic Stage Company on East 13th Street in the Union Square area, has a running time of 1:30, without intermission, and has been extended to December 14th.

When the show was over I braved the elements again and subwayed back to the warm and cozy confines of PHC where I had time to change clothes, have a quick snack, and then brave the elements again to head up to the Upper Westside for my second event ...

A classical music concert at Lincoln Center ...

NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA @ Avery Fisher Hall. The program was:

Wagenaar - Cyrano de Bergerac Overture;
Korngold - Violin Concerto (performed by Hilary Hahn); and,
Beethoven - Symphony No. 7

It was another excellent concert by the NY Phil, this time conducted by guest conductor Jaap van Zweden. Zweeden has been music director of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra since 2008 and music director of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra since 2012.

Hilary Hahn did an outstanding job in performing Korngold’s (not one of Billi Pod’s favorite composers) Concerto.

The highlight of the evening was Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7, which earned a roaring standing ovation.

Yep, despite having to brave the elements this was an entertainment event that was definitely worth it.

OK, my loyal and faithful readers and followers, it is time to post this and then get ready to head uptown.


Yesterday’s Pedometer mileage==>5.05 miles (or, 11,055 steps)

Total mileage for 2014==>1,332.89 miles (average 4.04 miles per day)


Billi Pod
“Don’t pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he’ll just kill you.”

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