My year at the CSO

In mid-August, arriving back home after my dad’s memorial, I felt worn-out and weary. No big surprise, considering I’d just spent the last 2+ months worried, in constant prayer, and traveling to Cleveland 5 out of 6 weekends! I just wanted to do something for myself that I would enjoy and would be relaxing.


So, without too much thought, I subscribed to 10 concerts with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. By buying 10, I got a ticket to the Yo-Yo Ma concert for free. I also added in 1 more, for an even dozen. Now, for your reference, prior to this, I had attended 2 CSO concerts in 3 years. Though I’ve long enjoyed classical, I have never been enough of a fan to go a lot. But, at that time, it appealed to me andwas cheapest of numerous other options I considered (including moving to Hawaii!).


Out of the 12 I bought, I only attended 7. Why? Because all but 2 were on Friday nights and I would decide I was too tired, or the fact that the roads were about to ice over worried me, or…. I also rationalized that since I bought the super-cheap seats ($10, right in the front row) and parking is $5 and I’d spend about $5 on dinner, I wasn’t truly losing out on money (since I was saving the extra $10 I would’ve had to spend). I decided it came out as a wash (which is true).


But, out of the 7 I attended, I learned that I like classical even better when it’s live. There’s something about watching the musicians play (or at least the ones in the front as that’s all I could see) and the conductor that’s simply mesmerizing. I heard newer, modern pieces (including 5 world premieres) alongside classical ones. I definitely prefer the older styles!


I learned to make sure I had a change of clothes since I came right from work. I don’t care what the info I received said, jeans got you snubbed at by others! I also learned that the couple next to you who seem to be uppity, will be quite nice once they’s seen you 3 or so times. Basically, sitting mainly amongst long-time subscribers–you have to prove yourself as faithful in attendance! I kinda gave myself a kick after realizing I had judged others a bit to quickly.


It was an interesting, enlightening, and enjoyable year. I have renewed for next season, but only for 5 concerts (and there’s 1 more I plan to add). We’ll see if I make ’em all!

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