Clown School convenes at midnight sur la plage — a maverick constellation of old sea-dogs and post-humous grands personnages. Chateaubriand has on a red nose and does the rope trick to a tee. Degas draws his Dead Fox in the air but wobbles and the ears go askew. Cue a snicker from Corneille that triggers in the mind of Berlioz the need to leap up and instantly pom-pom his way through an entire rendition (plus chromatic modulations to accommodate the gulls) of Ouverture to Le Corsaire, an abrupt and sprightly fantasy he put together as a precursor to — nothing (which, coincidentally, is the kind of pre -cursor Clown School can really get behind).