Wednesday , January 24 2018

Nancy Ives



Poetic and pre-eminent cellist at home with the classics and new music who elevates the lofty concert stages of Portland

Born: Colorado

Arrived: 1997

Favorite Place: Shemanski Park

Why? Shemanski Park is a true microcosm of my Portland. It hosts gatherings from farmer’s markets to protests, and provides an entry point to the South Park blocks for everyone from tenants of subsidized housing to members of the Arlington Club. On concert nights during the Oregon Symphony season, I walk towards the warmly glowing peachy brick walls across the park alongside audience members streaming towards the Schnitz and to theaters in the Antoinette Hatfield Hall. There’s a sense of anticipation in the air. Sometimes, people call out works of encouragement — “Play pretty!” — or ask questions — “How’s the program tonight?” or even share a compliment — “Loved your solo last week!” For those moments, I am still out in the regular world with them, before entering the special and ritualized time and place we’re about to share, where the alchemy between performers and audience creates artistic gold.

“Portland is…where I always thought I’d end up, even when I hadn’t even visited yet! Portland has changed… When I first arrived, I found that people who had grown up here and not gone anywhere else didn’t really “get” how special it is here Now, thanks to national attention — “Portlandia,” “best of” articles and the New York Times’ love affair with our restaurant scene — there’s a sense of pride in the special qualities of both our natural beauty and our cultural richness.”

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