卒業旅行(3)/Graduation travel(3)


I left Germany for Austria. It was about 30 years ago, so my memory is a bit hazy, but I didn’t seem to be surprised by the scenery from the train windows anymore. I do remember that when we crossed the border, an official with a pistol came to check my passport. I don’t remember exactly which border it was.


In Austria, I went to Salzburg first. It was the birthplace of Mozart, and the melody of Eine Kleine Nachtmusik ran through my head. Just thinking that Mozart spent his younger days here made me happy. Nowadays, Japanese actress Miki Nakatani lives in Salzburg. Recently, I saw that she introduced Salzburg on TV, still a good place.


After there, I went to Vienna. As a lover of classical music, I had a special feeling about going to Vienna. At dusk on a Saturday, a female music student was playing her violin on the street, and I was really, really moved by her performance. I remember thinking, “This is the capital of music,” and throwing some money from my meager possessions into the instrument case. I went back to Vienna in 2013, but I found the Vienna I visited in 1992 to be much nicer than the one where many touts in musician’s wigs were looking for tourists.


In Vienna, I met a couple of women from the same university and I invited them for dinner. I did not have enough money, so I spent very little money on food, but that day was special, we had a nice dinner at a restaurant and a great time talking about trip.


The guidebooks were full of information about the troubles that can occur when traveling abroad. It was my first time to travel abroad, and I was a solo traveler. I remember feeling nervous about many things. I traveled from Vienna to Venice by night train. Of course, I did not have enough money to travel in a first-class or second-class carriage with beds, but in a compartment. I looked for Japanese travelers at the train station, and Japanese travelers occupied the compartment. I had the impression that Italy was particularly scary.


Venice is a city of water, but I didn’t have the money for a gondola ride, so I wandered around St. Mark’s Square on foot. Luckily, there were many people in costumes, and I was impressed by the scenery that I often see on TV. I brought a limited amount of film with me, so I didn’t take any pictures, which was a shame. Nowadays, I would have taken a video with my smartphone.

まだまだ続く。To be continued


クラシックコンサート/Classical Concert


I often go to classical music concerts when I travel abroad, especially when I go to Europe or the United States. The price of a concert in Japan would be outrageous, but in Europe or US, we can listen to a concert at a reasonable price. I think it would be great if the Japanese could more easily go to foreign orchestra concerts in Japan. And of course, I would like to visit Japanese orchestra concerts as well.


In Japan, Beethoven Symphony No.9 is always performed in December. I used to go often and enjoyed it. I hope that the orchestra will take root in the local community just as soccer has taken root in the local community and fans have taken root.


The Musikverein in Vienna is, in my opinion, the most famous concert hall in the world. I have been there at least twice. Unfortunately, I have never had the opportunity to hear the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra in the Musikverein. I would like to experience it at least once.

さて、クラシックのコンサートで最も思い出に残っている演奏を一つ挙げるとするならば、2013年5月、ウイーン楽友協会ホールで聴いた、ロリーン・マゼール指揮 ミュンヘン・フィルハーモニック管弦楽団のコンサートが一番に印象に残っています。特にブラームス交響曲第2番は素晴らしい演奏でした。Youtubeなどでも同じ曲の他の演奏を聴くのですが、私がウィーンで聴いた演奏には叶わないように思います。多分、Liveで聴いた印象が強く残っているからなんでしょうね。

If I had to pick one of my most memorable classical concert performances, I would have to say the concert I attended in May 2013 at the Musikverein Vienna with the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Lorin Maazel. Especially performance of Brahms Symphony No. 2 was excellent. I tried other performances of the same piece on Youtube, etc., but I don’t think they are as good as the one I heard in Vienna. Most probably because I have a strong impression of what I heard live.


Unlike rock or pop music, classical concerts have different impressions depending on the program. For example, Rimsky-Korsakov : Scheherazade is a great piece of music to listen to, fun to watch, and makes me want to go to concert for the piece.