Anyone flirting with utterly falling in love with Buffalo, and all its summertime musical offerings, may have gone head over heels Thursday night during the free Canalside Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra concert. With a temperate evening, a salmon-colored sun hanging in the sky over the lake, and happy dance music on stage, it was a jubilant party.
The crowd, largely seated in Canalside’s iconic Adirondack chairs, and chairs brought from home, vied for real estate on the lawn. Others stood on the cobblestone from in front of the stage to the rear of the venue near the food vendor area replete with food trucks serving classic Buffalo fare and other finger foods. The place was packed.
Hitting the stage were members of the BPO under the baton of Matthew Kraemer, outgoing associate conductor after five years in the city: Kraemer is off to two orchestral gigs in Pennsylvania. The ever-smiling Kraemer, dressed in casual black attire, clearly enjoyed his time on the Canalside stage and in front of Canadian band Jeans ’n Classics of London, Ont. The set featured hits by both Earth, Wind & Fire and later-career Michael Jackson, divided fairly evenly with songs familiar to anyone who has been within a mile of a dance floor since the 1970s. Read more.