The Academy in action. Home Run Derby #2.

Yesterday was “the day off” … hardly, for nearly all of us, but the idea of it looked good on paper, at least. Some did enjoy a little extra sleep in the morning, perhaps attended to some laundry, got in some extra practice time, maybe even got to stay at home for the great part of the day. One of our Participants celebrated his birthday at a local aquarium, and I headed down to KDFC to prepare for next Sunday morning’s broadcasts of “The Sacred Concert” and “Baroque By The Bay.” But many used the day to polish up the pieces they’d be presenting later in the evening as part of the first of three Academy-In-Action concerts.

Before heading over to hear the first musical smorgasbord of the works that our Participants began to rehearse just a week ago, I stopped back at Dobbs Ferry Restaurant and ordered that sensational Chicken Scarpariello that I wrote about last week. When it was served to the Opening NIght Dinner guests, a plateful satisfied three of four. So, much to my surprise, when the same huge portion arrived at my table for just me, I was delighted to consider how lucky I was to have that entirely to myself! Even better than the first time I tasted it last week, it set me out in a very good mood, perhaps also because in the restaurant I was watching the 2013 All-Star Home Run Derby. Yoenis Cespedes nailed the first-place prize, hitting homer after homer. What fun that must be!

Having arrived in the concert hall, it was the Home Run Derby all over again. Our Academy Participants hit home run after home run in music that included Monteverdi, Telemann, Boismortier, Hotteterre, Monteclair, Quantz, Rameau, Bach, and Handel. I can’t single out any one of the performers without singling out them all — and that, by usage, wouldn’t really be singling, anyway — they were all terrific. Now we just have to figure out how we can keep them all here in San Francisco!

Tanya Tomkins presents her first of two lecture/demos on the Bach ‘Cello Suites today (the second one is tomorrow at noon), and today brings the first of five installments of public (meaning “open to the public”) master classes and lectures. They’re all going to be enlightening and inspiring. Those who have attended in previous years can attest to that. Then it’s on to Academy-In-Action II tonight at 8.

More tomorrow…