The Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts has organized a month of presentations of the visual and performing arts.  It features 1500 artists at over 135 events from street fairs to gardens to circus arts to orchestras to dancers to…

The Kimmel Center has been instrumental in making it all happen, and they’ve created Paris in their plaza  as a highlight and centerpoint for the month.

Well, I found out that some of my best buds, Iggie, Maurie, and Claude were going to be at the Kimmel last night so I went to enjoy them.  That’s Igor Stravinsky, Maurice Ravel, and Claude Debussy.  The splendid performance was by the National Orchestra of France and it was a delightful evening.

(Image taken handheld, boys and girls, at ISO 2000, f/9, 1/30th, and IS)

The Eiffel Tower mock-up offers a dynamic light show with music at 7:00 PM and 10:00 PM.  It’s worth seeing and there’s no admission.  There are various Parisian food stands on the perimeter of the plaza including a wine store.


The sky around the tower is spotted with moving silhouettes of a dirigible, biplanes, and a couple of locomotives (?? – artistic license?)

All in all, a nice, colorful, musical evening.


Last night’s program was near perfection for me: ravelpic

Ravel’s Piano Concerto For The Left Hand,

his La Valse, Rachmaninoff’s Symphonic Dances

(which I hadn’t heard before but enjoyed as I do most of his work)

and Liszt’s Totentanz.

For those of you who can spare the four minutes for a lift here’s a video of  the concluding section of the Piano Concerto. 

It was written in 1930 as a commission from pianist Paul Wittgenstein who had lost his right arm in World War I.

Another well-known favorite by Ravel is his Pavane For A Dead Princess, which can be heard here:

I was struck by this video because the 1889 painting _MG_0704 300of White Face Mountain is the same vista seen in some of my Lake Placid images.  (There.  I’ve gotten a picture of mine into my photo journal!)  More Lake Placid scenes here.

An overwhelming feeling I had during the concert is that there is still such beauty and magnificence in a world in which we are too often confronted with brutality and evil.  There is hope.