by Mike Telin
Long before the pianists arrive and each session begins, a whole group of people arrive to begin work backstage at Gartner Auditorium — making sure that microphones and cameras are properly placed and focused, that the audio and video feeds are working, that pianos are tuned, that radio broadcasts are announced, and that ushers are ready to take tickets, seat the audience, and deal with latecomers.
When I arrived in the lobby one hour prior to the 7:00 start time for the chamber music segment of the finals on Tuesday, the ushers were busy preparing to receive the audience, and volunteers were stocking the competition gift shop with program books, CDs and other CIPC items.
When audio engineer Alan Bise meets me and takes me backstage, the piano technician is busy tuning the Hamburg Steinway that both Georgy Tchaidze and Nikita Mndoyants had chosen for their performances with the Escher String Quartet. [Read more…]