Sunday, March 13, 2011

Succumbing to New Technology

I have to confess that I have taken one more step down the road to the perdition of new technology.  I have now brought a Blu-ray player into the house.  The motivation was a bit strange, but still good enough for rationalization.  The reason goes back to December of 2008, when my wife and I saw a rather extraordinary projection of a high-definition video recording of a performance of The Nutcracker at the Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg, made on January 2, 2007.  At the time the impression was deep enough to write an extended blog post about this highly unorthodox production, but then my wife decided that we should add it to our private collection.

When we searched for it on Amazon, we discovered that it had only be released in its high-definition form on Blu-ray.  For several years we procrastinated on getting the equipment.  However, by the time we had the appropriate monitor, the prices had dropped to a point where it was only a matter of procrastination.  That procrastination ended in the form of an anniversary present.  The box arrived last week, followed shortly by the Nutcracker disc.

Given the extent to which this feels like a concession, I am happy to report that this production was as impressive the second time as it was the first.  Does this mean that we shall upgrade our library?  Hardly, but, if the Met ever releases a Blu-ray of their HD broadcast of Richard Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde, which may still be the most innovative and informative use of this technology I have yet encountered, I doubt that it will take much to persuade me to buy it!

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