Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Kleinhans in Winter

A popular view of the reflecting pool - with a snowy twist
Kleinhans Music Hall is a treasure that I feel lucky to be able to enjoy. I think Kleinhans is a great option during unpleasant weather especially, because of music's ability to lift your spirits. The Buffalo Chamber Music Society, whether for that reason or another, schedules their free-of-charge "Gift to the Community" series during the colder months. See the details HERE.

If you didn't get this already from browsing the Excels on this blog, I am all about enjoying Buffalo on a minimal budget. Sponsored concerts are a great way to increase access to good art and to a cultural treasure - much like Dollar Days and First Fridays do at other institutions across the city.

The Gift to the Community series is held in the Mary Seaton room - a smaller music hall within the larger building. It is probably most famous for it's outer design that projects into the reflecting pool in the warm months. As you can see below, it's a gorgeous space well designed for sound and sight.

The architect's vision for Kleinhans Music Hall "was to create 'an architectural atmosphere…so as to tune the performers and the public alike into a proper mood of performance and receptiveness, respectively.'" (from the Kleinhans website) The whole building shows a lovely attention to detail and interesting spaces.

Kleinhans Lobby
I had never been inside the main hall, so a considerate employee let me in to see it. He didn't have any reason to say yes when I asked, but he did and I appreciate his kindness so much. At the time of writing I haven't attended a concert in the main music hall, but I hope to go back soon to see how different it looks with the lights on.

For your next affordable opportunity to visit, look no further than THIS EVENT coming up on April 3rd. "Music in Buffalo's Historic Places" is an incredible series that for some reason is pretty hard to track down (it's on my Excels if you need to find the main site later). The Kleinhans iteration is only $15 and involves all guests sitting up on stage with the musicians. It will be a unique experience and I highly recommend going!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

First snow, last snow

We've had our moments with this winter, for sure. We've made some history with the Polar Vortex, and today we made history again by having two official blizzards in one season for the first time in 40+ years.

As I hope that today means the worst of winter is passed, I want to send it a little love note to wish it well on its way. You stay too long, winter, but you are breathtaking.

Here's some pictures I've been meaning to post from our first big snow this season, back in November. It was hard to choose my favorites, so I'm considering setting up an online gallery. Not today, though...not today. 

I had a little trouble with my point-and-shoot camera to get the light setting right, but I think they still show how mythical everything looked.This snowfall helped set the tone of wonder that never really went away for me this winter. I especially loved seeing familiar sights like the Rose Garden and Hoyt Lake looking completely different than I'm used to seeing them.

Sculpture on Bidwell Parkway
Looking down Lincoln Parkway
This is the Rose Garden, but not as you're used to seeing it!
Hoyt Lake, which can never look less than gorgeous
I've been a winter-hater my whole life and that was the main reason I originally didn't want to relocate to Buffalo. I still am much crabbier during the winter, but I also can't help thinking, we've got it all! Nothing in our environment stays the same for very long, and it helps me to appreciate each season more. Hopefully these pictures help get you through the final few weeks before those first flowers start poking up through the snow.

I couldn't get enough of these festive-looking berries on Elmwood near the Lexington Co Op.