I Like To Be In America!
Solveig Steinhardt is ready for ten days of American groove.
Music is certainly one of the US's best products – along with the Grand Canyon and Lucky Charms, if you ask me. From jazz, blues, and Broadway musicals to rock'n'roll and film music, the US has been feeding the world rhythm and poetry for more than a century. This month, Konzerthaus Berlin will be presenting ten days of American sounds with a vast program touching all of the most important milestones in American musical culture.
The busy New York City streets of the early 1900s are probably the most iconic image of the American melting pot, and nobody has captured the city's soundscapes better than George Gershwin. With his combination of jazz and classical, Gershwin was able to represent the raucous streets of Manhattan in sound form. From 16 to 18 February, pianist and conductor Wayne Marshall and the Konzerthausorchester will be performing some of the composer's most popular pieces
along with songs by another American master, Leonard Bernstein, who used the Broadway musical to depict the America of the 1950s. Be prepared for tunes such as I Got Rhythm, The Man I Love, New York Rhapsody, and Some Other Time.
Those who just can't get enough of New York should also pick one of the Rush Hour Concerts, held every day at 6pm. Taking place in a more informal setting with a café-style table arrangement, the concert series offers a lively musical break from your sightseeing, and features more of Gershwin's fabulous New World music.
And what would America be without animation? As special effects get more and more impressive every year, we should not forget the importance of these films' soundtracks, often Oscar- or Grammy-winning. On 19 February, take your kids to the PIXAR concert for a couple of hours of popular songs from animated pictures such as Finding Nemo, Robots, Ratatouille, and more. Lovers of Frank Zappa, the self-taught genius of American rock, should not miss the Ensemble Modern's orchestra interpretation of songs from his two albums The Yellow Shark and Greggery Peccary and Other Persuasions, on 22 February. But the festival's real highlight is without a doubt Dee Dee Bridgewater, queen of jazz and soul since the 1960s. The Grammy winner will be at Konzerthaus on 25 February only, with a program of popular songs for all to enjoy.