Chile looks below the surface for music(Read article summary)
The unique acoustics of a tunnel slicing through the Chilean mountains made it an alluringly unusual place for a classical music concert.
â€˘ A local, slice-of-life story from a Monitor correspondent.
Virginia Vargas had never seen anything like it â€“ actually, no one had. Set atop an improbable stage a mile inside the belly of a mountain, Santiagoâ€™s Philharmonic Orchestra swelled a cement cave with the sounds of Mendelssohnâ€™s â€śWedding March.â€ť
For one day, the San CristĂłbal Tunnel was shut down to allow the Municipal Theater of Santiago and the Philharmonic Orchestra to transform the cavernous surroundings into a concert hall. Minister of Public Works HernĂˇn de Solminihac called it an opportunity to â€śtake art and culture from its traditional spaces and occupy public infrastructure beyond the every day.â€ť
Ms. Vargas, who had won her ticket in an online lottery, described the concert as simply â€śamazing.â€ť
Bathed in the orange glow of the tunnelâ€™s emergency lighting, the orchestra treated an audience of 1,500 to Rossini and Mendelssohn. For Vargas, it was her first classical music concert.
Citric-toned perfume blended with an undercurrent of diesel, and as the lights dimmed the tunnel felt uniquely suited for a concert. The finale was met with thunderous applause. And then came a mile-long exodus to the surface.