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  Cornell University

Cornell in Rome

College of Architecture, Art and Planning

Concert in Sala Santa Cecilia


Photo Courtesy of Abram Colette

This week Professor Blanchard took the art and architect students to a concert at Renzo Piano’s Sala Santa Cecilia concert hall to see the world renowned pianist Martha Argerich. Although she planned to perform a concerto by Chopin, she opted for Liszt’s  Piano Concerto n.1. After, the entire orchestra performed Schumann’s Symphony n.2.


I honestly had not attended the orchestra since middle school, when my parents often dragged me along with them. In high school I was able to beg the excuse of homework or social obligations. I forgot, or perhaps never fully realized what a wonderful experience attending the orchestra can be. However, the prospect of seeing the beautiful concert hall and a performance in Rome enticed me to return. The venue itself is absolutely stunning– located in Rome’s ‘Parco della Musica’– the theater is situated amongst two other concert halls and an outdoor theater park. Though we arrived in the pouring rain (November is Rome’s rainy month), when we left we could appreciate the fresh beauty of the space under the glow of lamplight. Inside, the high ceilings were adorned with floating wooden panels, and the seats were covered in rich red velvet. It truly felt like the perfect, luxurious venue for the nights performance. Luckily, Martha Argerich did not disappoint either, her fingers flying across the keyboard with an energy which seems astonishing for a 78 year old pianist. When the concerto finished, the applause would not cease until we hear an encore!

All in all, it was truly a fantastic opportunity, and one I would not have sought out for myself without the Professor Blanchard’s guidance.

Ciao for now!


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