After a relaxing break for a couple of weeks in the summer it would be nice to gradually ease myself back into work with something low pressure and easy. Of course in the music business this simply doesn’t happen and so this week we were thrown straight back into the whirlwind of Valery and the Proms. The Scriabin Symphony No 1 was unknown to most people unlike the Firebird. The orchestra gave its all and even managed to set fire to one of the television monitors placed behind us narrowly avoiding the combustible LSO chorus. It was all put out by the time the Firebird started in the second half and it was left to a well rested orchestra to burn the house down for the first time this season. Judging by the roar of approval at the end, which made half the orchestra jump, I think the prommers enjoyed it as did most of the critics.
Fairly shortly afterwards we got on a plane. There was no strike and no volcano although we were still delayed at Gatwick of course and so a quick lunch in Ljubljana was followed by the first of two concerts. After the Prom in which I was pretty busy as it goes, I was lucky enough to be playing second piccolo in Mahler 5 and I wasn’t in the first half at all. This felt like a fairly relaxed concert as I got to sit next to Sharon, who makes my piccolo playing sound better, and Adam