March 1, 2007 at 10:38 AMIt's the new concert black.
(Maybe this would work in LA, but what about AK?)
From Ben ClaptonHmm... well I'm all up for it! hehe
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 10:39 AM
Though somehow, I think that there are some performers I wouldn't like to see naked, and there are probably thousands, nay billions, of audience members who wouldn't want to see me naked.
From Emily GrossmanIf that's all it takes to get attention in the music world, then what's stopping us? I want to know.
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 10:46 AM
From Tom HolzmanEmily - have you ever tried playing nude sitting down? If so, please tell us whether that worked out at all. I would think that whatever the advantages it would have in terms of attracting patrons, it would be much more difficult for the musicians and on balance not help your cause.
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 1:47 PM
From Ihnsouk GuimWhy do female soloists dress so differently from the orchestra? Male soloists do not.
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 2:24 PM
If we want to distinguish ourselves musically, shouldn't we try to keep the attention away from looks as much as possible by being dressed as plainly as possible?
From Terez MertesIs it the Alaska winters that does this to you?
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 2:34 PM
From Elizabeth SmithWell, there've been nude ice-cello performances here and there for the past 35 years. In Alaska you could probably put together a whole nude ice orchestra.
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 5:06 PM
From Terez MertesElizabeth! That was the most bizarre story I've ever read! How on earth did you hunt THAT one down? Just hilarious. (A rather bizarre writing style as well, like something experimental you'd find in a literary journal that's entirely in 2nd person present tense.) Thanks for posting this, er, chilling story. ((Oh har har...))
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 5:54 PM
From Kelsey Z.Ihnsouk, I've actually seen a lot of male soloists perform and dress VERY differently from the orchestra. They don't always wear a tux and tie. :)
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 6:12 PM
From Elizabeth SmithTerez, I remember seeing a photograph of a nude woman playing the "ice cello" in Time magazine when I was a girl. It's always stuck in my mind and I've looked it up from time to time. This is the first time I found this weird letter, though. I hope others read it-- it's worth a look.
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 6:50 PM
From Karen AllendoerferI looked it up and read the article. If you google "ice cello" you can see what one looks like:
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 7:07 PM
But what would it sound like?
And why a cello? Would an ice violin or ice viola just melt too fast?
From Terez MertesOh, this ice cello business is just cracking me up. Good point, Karen, on sound. I mean, really - HOW could it produce sound? What a funny, funny mental image, having a nude woman snuggle up to this thing and play it.
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 7:32 PM
I love this site. I'm learning so much more about music and musicians than I would have though possible. : /
From Emily GrossmanSince the cellist is required to play until the instrument melts, we'd end up with a concerto that lasted six months. I doubt she'd make it. The people in the town would make bets as to the exact time she would thaw out in the spring.
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 7:44 PM
From Jim W. MillerNude ice cello would kill me if you have to hold a cello closer than about nine inches.
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 8:32 PM
From Stephen Brivatithere's nothing worse than a frozen end pin.
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 8:48 PM
From Ihnsouk GuimThanks, Kelsey. Allow me rephrase my question then; Why do soloists dress so differently? Shouldn't the music distinguish soloists, not what they wear?
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 10:06 PM
We've just been to a chamber concert. They played Piazzolla pieces among others. Female members try to bring Tango in by wearing something red. I appreciated their efforts, but compared to the music itself what they were wearing seemed rather insignificant(?). I am sure I am the strange one. To me the first note already spoke Tango loud and clear. The dresses were distracting since they didn't seem red enough compared to the music.
From Elizabeth SmithWhich orchestra was it, Ihnsouk?
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 10:29 PM
From Elizabeth Smithice cello
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 10:32 PM
From Ihnsouk GuimElizabeth - Chamber series at Perelman Theater by the Philadelphia Orchestra.
Posted on March 1, 2007 at 10:33 PM
From Kelsey Z.Ihnshouk, music really should be the distinguishing feature. I guess people just want to stand out from the orchestra. I personally like doing solo recitals and concertos where I get to put on a different outfit than the usual black pants and blouse. Some people do take it over the top though. For me, it's comfort and class with a bit of glam (like the dress in my most recent blog posting) but hopefully not enough of any of those to distract from my playing. I think it's fine as a soloist to dress up and dress different from the orchestra but I do agree that sometimes it's a little over the top. I saw one pianist once play in what looking like a shiny, wrinkled house coat and another time in this mustard snake like dress thing with red stilletos and the dress verging on the point of falling off... those people I guess made up for their poor playing in their fashion sense....or matched it with their lack of it?
Posted on March 2, 2007 at 12:10 AM
From Ihnsouk GuimKelsey - Thanks for the well thought-out reply. I agree your dress looks fantastic and very appropriate.
Posted on March 2, 2007 at 12:55 AM
From Maura GeretyIhnsouk, that's the FUN of being a female musician, getting to wear all sorts of fancy dresses. (yes, I'm a girly girl when it comes to concert attire, i can't help it.)
Posted on March 2, 2007 at 1:44 AM
As for playing nude, I've never tried it myself but I've heard stories about conservatories in hot climates where the practice rooms have locks on the doors...
From Maura Gerety...on the other hand, regarding unfortunate fashion choices, I once played an orchestra concert where we had a female violin soloist who was wearing a very pretty strapless gown. Unfortunately it didn't fit very well. Thankfully a major catastrophe never occured, but according to some audience members it looked a bit precarious there for a while. And that was from the front, just trust me about what it looked like from the back...
Posted on March 2, 2007 at 1:46 AM
This entry has been archived and is no longer accepting comments.
Violinist.com Editor Laurie Niles went to Austin, Texas to cover the Menuhin Competition 2014, watching some of the world's top young violinists. Read her ongoing coverage.
Emily Grossman is from Soldotna, Alaska. Biography
Please consider supporting Violinist.com by becoming a sponsor, and reaching our dedicated community of violin professionals, students and fans!