Monday, 23 August 2010

Music at the Royal Albert Hall

My humans (well Andrew at least) enjoy classical music. What I mean is he used to listen a lot but that was before Mikki and I came along and made sure Disney music was heard most in our house. Well, in the last few weeks Andrew has been re-introducing classical music by turning on the BBC Proms concerts on the television.

For those of you unfamialiar with the "Proms", they are something of a British tradition in summer. They are a major series of classical concerts centred around the Royal Albert Hall. The hall may not have the finest acoustics but it is magnificent. The word "Prom" is short for "Promenade" - which is used because for the season they take the seats out of the ground floor level and the audience stands ("promenades").

Andrew has been listening to some serious music, including two Mahler symphonies and a series of Beethoven's piano concertos. But the concert that got me to watch was one of works by Bach that had been arranged by others for a large orchestra. The opening piece was the Toccata and Fugue in D minor. As you know, this is the piece which also opens Disney's original "concert feature", Fantasia! And yes, the arrangement they played was the one written by Leopold Stokowski for Fantasia. So I allowed Andrew to record this concert and to listen to this part of it lots. The television picture is very good but you know how difficult it is to take photos from the television.
The Royal Albert Hall also features in one of my humans' most magical Disney moments: the time they went to the premiere of "Fantasia 2000" there. The premiere featured a screening of the musical segments with a live orchestra (conducted by James Levine, who conducts on the film). They didn't show the link pieces, so the humans didn't see an animated Mickey Mouse come to shake the conductor's hand at the end of "The Sorcerer's Apprentice". Instead, he came out live on stage to do it. They also had the thrill of Roy E. Disney introducing the film and a performance of Pomp and Circumstance No. 1 - which is also a highlight of the last night of the "Proms" concerts.
Well, that's enough serious stuff. Next time, I may tell you about Mikki's trip to Disneyland Paris or about the humans most recent visit to a cinema (Toy Story 3 in 3D).

Tuesday, 3 August 2010


Yes, I've been away a long time and I apologise. Of course, it's not my fault but we needn't go into how my humans have been messing about with computers and working on a Village Fete and looking after Andrew's mother and arranging themselves even more holidays . . . and what other excuses do they have?

Here is the one other picture I wanted to show you from my cruise in April. I am in Vienna. The sign behind me says, "Mozarthaus Vienna" but the Guide said it is known by most people as the "Figaro House" so I had to get my humans to take me there. The guide also said Mozart lived in lots of places in Vienna but this is the one they have turned into a museum. This is the house where Mozart is believed to have composed "The Marriage of Figaro". I don't know much about that - and my humans didn't take me inside to find out. Mozart lived a very long time ago so I don't know how he knew about me and I don't have any plans for getting married but I don't complain if someone wants to name a house after me.

I hope to post a little more frequently now. I have some catching up to do. Thank you for your patience.

Figaro the Toy Cat