RLPO – Czech Tour 2015 Day Two – Prague Spring Festival – Opening Concert

The view from my hotel room. One of the many stunning buildings  in the area.

The view from my hotel room. One of the many stunning buildings in the area.

The sun is out and shining bright on day two of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic tour. I think I’ll walk in to work today!

Public transport in Prague

Public transport in Prague

The Hotel Mozartava is just by Mozart Villa. The villa is now a museum dedicated to the visits of Mozart to the Dusek family and is now a popular tourist attraction. unnamed-3The walk over the Vltava/Moldau River into the Old Town takes about thirty minutes and in this glorious sunshine is a real pleasure.unnamed-2

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The river itself is also a joy on such a nice day, the subject of many spectacular picture post cards.

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Vsysehrad

Vsysehrad – The old castle

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In the distance, Prague Castle and St. Vitus’ Cathedral always stands proud.

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The Charles Bridge is so busy during the daytime.

IMG_6789It seems that all tourists need to flock here during their day of sightseeing.IMG_6793What a way to go to work! My leisurely stroll continued from the Charles Bridge through the beautiful Old Town, on my way to the orchestra’s first rehearsal on Czech soil during this tour.

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unnamed-8unnamed-4unnamed-3unnamed-2As stated on previous posts, our first performance was also today and consisted of a fine programme…

Janacek – Orchestral Suite ‘From The House of the Dead’

Berg – Seven Early Songs plus three others newly orchestrated by Chris Gordon

Linda Larsson – Soprano Soloist

Interval

Elgar – Symphony no. 1 in A flat major

A 'Starsky & Hutch' themed restaurant, or is that the police station!

A ‘Starsky & Hutch’ themed restaurant, or is that the police station!

 It was getting on for midday now so I had plenty of time for a look around, before the 3pm rehearsal, through the old city and get something nice to eat. There were plenty of sightings of other groups form the orchestra around town.

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Members of the RLPO Horn Section enjoying the ambience of Old Prague.

IMG_6813I headed to u Medvidku, the famous restaurant and bar we had visited yesterday evening, to meet some of the other musicians for something really nice to eat.

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Starting left, clockwise: Dave Pigott (horn), Paul Marsden (Trumpet), Dave Hooper (Trumpet) & Anthony Williams (Bass) – enjoying traditional Czech Fayre at u Medvidku

You certainly get well fed at these traditional restaurants. unnamed-10Most had pork dishes but I chose duck, for a change!unnamed-11unnamed-12

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Having eaten, I headed towards the Smetana Hall for our rehearsal.

The Smetana Hall

The Smetana Hall

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Principal Percussion Graham Johns is ‘playing’ a set of chains in From The House of the Dead by Janacek! It’s a living…

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Principal Trombone Simon Cowen is also the conductor of Besses o'th Barn Brass Band and is seen here proudly sporting their logo on his t-shirt. Besses are the oldest continuously playing Brass Band in the world.

Principal Trombone Simon Cowen is also the conductor of Besses o’th Barn Brass Band and is seen here proudly sporting their logo on his t-shirt. Besses are the oldest continuously playing Brass Band in the world.

RLPO Trumpet Section for the tour: Brendan Ball, Paul Marsden, Dave Hooper & Rory Cartmel (bass trumpet)

RLPO Trumpet Section for the tour: Brendan Ball, Paul Marsden, Dave Hooper & Rory Cartmel (bass trumpet)

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Th'orns of the RLPO

Th’orns of the RLPO – (anticlockwise) Tim Jackson, Chris Morley, Dave Pigott and Simon Griffiths. Pianistv and celeste player, Ian Buckle is to the far right.

Vasily puts the RLPO through it's paces in Elgar 1

Vasily Petrenko puts the RLPO through it’s paces in Elgar 1

Chris Morley ( French Horn) plays tenor horn for Greenhalls Brass Band. Here he is proudly showing their logo in the Czech Republic

Chris Morley ( French Horn) plays tenor horn for Greenhalls Brass Band. Here he is proudly showing their logo in the Czech Republic

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RLPO Trombone & Tuba Section. Simon Cowen, Simon Powell, Simon Chappell & Robin Haggart

RLPO Trombone & Tuba Section. Simon Cowen, Simon Powell, Simon Chappell & Robin Haggart

After the rehearsal, we headed off for a spot of pre concert dinner and refreshment. The first port of call was downstairs at the front of house in The Smetana Hall. We had a swift drink in this beautiful room. Fabulous!

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There is an excellent class of busker in Prague!!!IMG_6880 (2)We went across the road from the hall for a bite to eat next. The choice of pickled sausages etc was excellent and just the job for a pre-performance filler.

The restaurant over the the road from Smetana Hall provided excellent Czech Fayre.

The restaurant over the the road from Smetana Hall provided excellent Czech Fayre.

The 8pm concert had been sold out for months and got of to a great start. The Czech people really enjoy their music and the enthusiastic applause for the Janacek continued right through the programme. At the end of the Elgar symphony, the audience erupted into cheers and demands for more. Vasily and the RLPO treated them to ‘At Twilight’ by Fidich. Seemingly a particular favourite. Once the hustle of post concert activity backstage had subsided, the trumpet section went for a quick beer before walking back across town, across the river and back to the hotel for a relatively quiet night. Touring does take it out of you!

Paul Marsden, Principal Second Trumpet enjoying a spot of refreshment in Prague

Paul Marsden, Principal Second Trumpet enjoying a spot of refreshment in Prague

Tomorrow

CLICK HERE – The RLPO perform the closing concert in the Prague Spring Festival.

Programme

Brahms – Piano Concerto in D minor

Soloist – Paul Lewis

Dvorak – Symphony no. 7

YESTERDAY

CLICK HERE – THE RLPO ARRIVE  FOR THE SPRING FESTIVAL – A FREE  EVENING IN PRAGUE

Click here to see the previous trip to Prague in 2010

About brendanball

Professional Trumpeter: Soloist, Orchestra Player, Chamber Music, Contemporary Music & Education.
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2 Responses to RLPO – Czech Tour 2015 Day Two – Prague Spring Festival – Opening Concert

  1. Pingback: RLPO – Czech Republic Tour 2015 Day Three – Prague Spring Festival Closing Concert | Brendan Ball's Blog

  2. Pingback: RLPO – Czech Republic 2015 Day One – Prague Spring Festival- A Free Evening! | Brendan Ball's Blog

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