Band: Leonard Nimoy with the Reno Chamber Orchestra
Title: A Soldier’s Tale / Incidental Music from “Egmont” Op. 84
Year: 2003 / 2005
Notes: Twice, I’ve recorded Mr. Nimoy and his wonderful voice! First time was when he was doing Stavinsky’s “A Soldier’s Tale,” in 2003. It was a great piece with just an octet and narrator. It was the story of Faust, a story re-written by Charlie Daniels in “The Devil Went Down to Georgia.” It’s a tricky piece with a lot of odd time meters and changes. Rehearsal was interesting, to say the least.
Before he came in for rehearsal, I had to set up his vocal mic and improvise a split between the PA and the recording console. I nearly didn’t pull that off with what was available at the hall at the time. The next time I recorded him there, I was far more prepared with a splitter.
I had to set up his mic and asked him if he’d be willing to talk into it at a certain angle to avoid feedback. He asked why and I explained the acoustics behind it. Turning to him afterwards to see if I had perhaps blinded him with science, his reply was, “Fascinating!”
The last line of “Soldiers” is now one of my favorite quotes. Picture, if you will, Mr. Nimoy saying at the end of a very sad story of a man who got greedy and lost everything to the Devil when he should have been content with what he had:
“One happy thing is every happy thing. No one can have it all. It is forbidden!”
Second time was in 2005 when he was doing the Beethoven piece, “Egmont.” It’s a larger piece, with a larger ensemble, but nowhere near as cool as the Stravinsky. Some good moments though. He says “Riding” about a thousand times in it.
This time I was with my dear friend, Ray Silva, who assisted on the recording setup, took the photos and was able to tell Mr. Nimoy that he works on the same sound stage where Star Trek was shot. That was very nice. During a break, Mr. Nimoy signed some autographs for members of the ensemble which was also very nice of him. This is where I got my copy of the Spock album signed.
Since he lives in Tahoe, I’m considering hiring him to do my answering machine outgoing message. That’s probably all I’ll be able to afford. Perhaps a V.O. for a solo album one day! That would be brilliant!