Which number did he say Gareth?
A disappointing, somewhat staccato, not to say atonal performance at Newcastle where some members barely got tuned up. In the first movement the high spot was a solo, awarded by the conductor after some hesitation, to Adebayor. Rafael Van Der Vaart, who knows the score well took it(edit) on with some distinction. This raised the hopes of the traveling cognoscenti just before the interval.
In the second movement the tempo improved but too many players remained out of tune and apparently under the impression that this was a (edit) recital rather than than a symphony. Some made little contribution to the ensemble. All of us need to sing from the same hymn sheet in future.
Only Younis Kaboul was outstanding, particularly when the Leader, Ledley King, was forced to retire and perhaps Luka Modric in the second half when he finally grasped the melody and improvised upon it.
But rarely can so many of the band have been off key at once: Gareth Bale, Rafael Van der Vaart, Scott Parker, Emanuel Adebayor, and young Jake Livermore all failed to hit the high notes at times.
However in front of a hostile audience playing a traditionally difficult piece we managed to complete the venue without lasting damage to our reputation or falling off a clef.
Maestro Sir Harold Redknapp interviewed immediately after the performance said that after an hour he was confident of a triumphant outcome but conceded that finally he was pleased to emerge without too much damage to our growing esteem.
The absence of our young Brazilian Sandro probably contributed to our failure to maintain the rhythm in the central movements. Some players seemed tired after traveling to Europe for International guest appearances during the week.
The playing was most uneven in the first movement but improved after the interval. Luka Modric, who was to attack the piece with some virtuosity later, fluffed his initial entry with the movement barely begun. There was some confusion with young Kyle Walker as to whose turn it was to undertake the next passage in the libretto.They clearly misread the script or dropped the hymn book
Part time soloist Defoe made an important contribution as soon as he was introduced but later failed to engage with his fellow players and allow them equal prominence as they moved towards the final movement.
The piece proceeded well until the finale approached when once again the music became ragged and harmony broke down. The final reception was muted but our stature was just about maintained.We didn't play well but under the circumstances didn't entirely lose the plot.The hallmark of a successful combo I understand.
We embark now on a series of less demanding appearances until we welcome the famous Chelsea All Stars Ensemble in December. By then we should have re-established ourselves as a Premier force both at home and abroad with trips to Ireland and Russian on the itinerary of our Europa Tour.
Other Musical notes:
The THFC quoir has again been reprimanded for its failure to maintain high standards in its choral performances at WHL and Sir Harold has again quite rightly admonished the members for their lack of judgment and taste in their selection of outdated and offensive lyrics.
Members are requested to reflect on the negative impact which these performances have on our reputation for integrity built up over many years. Some of the events referred to are more anciant history than current controversy.
May harmony be restored at the earliest opportunity.
And now for our Brazilian contingent, currently not playing, something to cheer them up.
The Stan Getz Quintet playing 'Desfinado' ('Out of tune' in Portuguese).
An ironic title if you like jazz: a bit like Spurs on Sunday if you don't