Poseur. Totally faking it...

It’s not bad enough that the Mexicans (including los Romney’s) are trying to take all the good jobs in America but now, as Kidist Paulos Asrat explains, we have to worry about the insidious influence The Yellow Peril is having upon our classical music experience:

During my recent trip to NYC in December, my aunt invited me to the Lincoln Center to a concert. She knows I love music, and especially classical music, so it was in honor of me that she bought these expensive tickets.

But, as I read the program (pdf file), I realized that the performance of Handel’s Messiah was to be performed by a “Korean-American” concert choir called Peniel Choir.

What the kimchi is that all about?

As the concert progressed, I began to realize a certain “prettiness” in the performance, a lack of force, drive and even drama. I don’t think this is simply a cultural phenomenon (as in misunderstanding the Messiah’s content, message, meaning, etc…). I think it is a physio/cerebral problem. I’ve seen it happen in art and design, and even in science – a friend of mine was a Korean PhD student. At some level, I think Asians demonstrate some ability (i.e. memorization, or fast, scale-like exercises). But there seems to be an inability to create a synthesized beauty, which is what much of art (and order in Science) is about.


Not only are Asians dispersed around the orchestra, they are also given lead positions in certain sections. But they are notably absent in the brass and percussion sections. Although that could just be a matter of time, these instruments (brass and percussion) might actually be too physically demanding for them.

I have attended Handel’s Messiah performed by the TSO, and it was the same effect of expecting (wishing for) more drama, or oomph!.

Well, these delicate lotuses of the Orient are no Stomp! but they seem to have a bit of oomph:

You know, someone should write a book about how Asians lack the emotional intelligence and physical attributes required to adequately perform classical music composed by 17th to 19th century European composers. They could call it The Berlioz Curve.

I’m sure Andrew Sullivan would find it provocative and worthy of consideration…

(Photo credit: World Economic Forum (www.weforum.org) swiss-image.ch/Photo by Andy Mettler)