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Monthly Archives: May 2017

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Alpine Adventure at the Magnificent Mondavi Center
Posted by admin on May, 31, 2017

On Mothers’ Day 2017, Concertmaster Richard Altenbach and the Auburn Symphony presented Richard Strauss‘s monumental An Alpine Symphony at the Mondavi Center, Davis CA, one of Northern California’s greatest concert halls.  I use the term “monumental” quite intentionally.  The term in the obvious sense well connotes the shear scale of technical difficulty as well as the gigantic instrumental forces required (125-piece orchestra including heckelphone, organ, wind-machine and a “Samuel’s Aerophon” – some kind of monstrous perpetual pre-circular breathing flute!)  The “-mental” in the adjective “monumental” could also apply to the fact that Strauss had originally entitled the opus “Der Antichrist “.  But that discussion is for another BlogSpot…

When young, Strauss had experienced an Alpine adventure similar to the one described in his An Alpine Symphony: he and a group of climbers lost their way heading up a mountain and were caught in a storm and soaked on the way down.

Solos for the Concertmaster are alternately gratifyingly beautiful and downright horrifying…

Richard in the News… Front Page!
Posted by admin on May, 12, 2017

Ok, any publicity is GOOD publicity, right?

So, that photo of me conducting a Hollywood Studio Orchestra in the recording of my movie cue In the Winners’ Circle is from 20th Century Fox’s Newman Scoring StageEndre Granat, Concertmaster; the inimitable Armin Steiner Engineer/Mixer (and one-time violin protégé of Jascha Heifetz!)

From the local Sacramento’s Fox40 Community Calendar:

Community Calendar

First violinist Richard Altenbach also is concertmaster for InConcert Sierra, in Grass Valley. He calls Strauss’ pinnacle work “cinematic… a herculean effort” that ranges from musically depicting “shards of light coming out into the valley at dawn” to the “disciplined chaos” of dissonant chords evoking the anxiety of being lost in the brush.

From the Grass Valley The Union Newspaper:

Alpine musical performance set with assist from performer with Grass Valley ties