Classical Music

  • Most Topular Stories

  • Most cultured city in the USA?

    Slipped Disc
    norman lebrecht
    27 Aug 2014 | 10:22 am
    Property Shark has drawn up a list of 20 cities that have the most cultural amenities* for head of population. The highest has to be New York, right? Wrong. New York City comes 13th. Los Angeles, then? Wrong again. LA checks in at #17. Chicago? Forget it. Number 20. So where then, where? Check here.   * defined as ‘museums, libraries, theaters, parks, stadiums’
  • Gramophone Awards - for blokes

    27 Aug 2014 | 8:28 am
    Wonderful list of winners for this year's Gramophone Awards. All top-quality stuff, including such luminaries as Jonas Kaufmann, Mahan Esfahani, Jean-Efflam Bavouzet, Arcadi Volodos, Iestyn Davies, Riccardo Chailly...Oh, and, er, all the composers and conductors and instrumentalists are blokes. Great guys. Amazing musicians. Phenomenal talents, the very best in the business. But still, all blokes.Plus ça change.Now, there are some fabulous women involved in the line-up. George Benjamin's opera Written on Skin features the soprano Barbara Hannigan and director Katie Mitchell; there are female…
  • Tired Of The Ice Bucket Challenge?

    Drew McManus
    27 Aug 2014 | 12:00 am
    Composer/keyboardist Jordan Rudess is sick of ice bucket challenge videos (h/t Ed Goldstein) but unlike most of us who just gripe about it, he did something creative by coming up with his own variation: playing an uber-cool, not-so-easy, chromatic riff in 13/8 while talking about his day. Post by Jordan Rudess. Just in case you need the notes…
  • The ice-bucket comes to opera...

    25 Aug 2014 | 5:35 am
    My latest interviewee tried to sing his way out of the ALS ice-bucket challenge - did his pals agree? The Times of Malta (clue to identity there) has the story and video here. Our tenorial hero's three next nominees include Bryn Terfel...With all of this going on, don't be too surprised if there's a sudden spurt of opera singers succumbing to chills.
  • Assuming the audience knows best is always questionable

    On An Overgrown Path
    27 Aug 2014 | 3:22 am
    The assumption that the audience knows best what it wants is always questionable. The blurring of the distinctions between the giving and receiving of art can be tragic. Everywhere in the West one notices this frightful descent into homogeneity, blurring distinctions obliterating the idiosyncratic, dragging the leaders down and the led up onto some middle ground of fulcrumed banality. Both communism and democracy are systems dedicated to smoothing out differences between men. Of course you can make a congenital dunce into a prime minister but this is no guarantee of improvement in the state.
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  • Enigmatic Endings: A Farewell To Summer Quiz

    Tom Huizenga
    26 Aug 2014 | 5:37 am
    The end of summer has a tendency to sneak up on us — or come to an unsettling halt. Try a quiz filled with fantastic finales and tremulous terminations.» E-Mail This
  • Bruce Hornsby's Modern Classical Moment

    NPR Staff
    23 Aug 2014 | 2:12 pm
    The pianist who spent 25 years writing pop hits says he's long been interested in the work of Charles Ives, Arnold Schoenberg and others. Now he's sharing that interest with his audience.» E-Mail This
  • A Perfectly Cromulent Classical Guide To 'The Simpsons' Marathon

    Mark Mobley
    21 Aug 2014 | 4:21 am
    For a family initially derided as crude, it sure spends a lot of time at the opera. Here's a sampling of embiggened classical music during The Simpsons marathon, which starts today on FXX.» E-Mail This
  • Masters And Disasters: The Met Opera Quiz

    Tom Huizenga
    20 Aug 2014 | 1:19 pm
    To mark the apparent end of the Metropolitan Opera's labor crisis, try a nerdworthy quiz — and learn a few quirky things about America's largest performing arts organization.» E-Mail This
  • Met Opera Tentatively Settles With 2 Major Unions

    Jeff Lunden
    18 Aug 2014 | 2:11 pm
    While agreements with 10 more unions need to be reached by Tuesday night, the deal struck with two of the Met's major unions represents a major turning point in a bitter dispute.» E-Mail This
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    Slipped Disc

  • Nike Wagner: Why do all summer festivals have to be the same?

    norman lebrecht
    28 Aug 2014 | 2:48 am
    The Bayreuth exile, now running the Beethoven Festival in Bonn, has been sounding off about the problem with festivals. Much of what she says can be applied equally to the Met, or to any other large cultural institution in the early 21st century. Here’s the quote:   All festivals today are striving desperately for a USP. This might be a composer, a musical genre, a landscape, a building, a location. At the same time, no festival organizer can escape the levelling effect of the cultural industry on the one hand and public austerity policies on the other. Without Celebrity Artists…
  • Go, Jamie! Cardiff winner gets unexpected role

    norman lebrecht
    28 Aug 2014 | 1:35 am
    Mezzo Jamie Barton, popular winner of BBC’s Cardiff Singer of the World, is a late jump-in for San Francisco’s Norma. Daveda Karanas has withdrawn in mid-rehearsals ‘for personal reasons’. Jamie will sing Adalgisa from September 5 opposite Sondra Radvanovsky’s Norma.  
  • Most cultured city in the USA?

    norman lebrecht
    27 Aug 2014 | 10:22 am
    Property Shark has drawn up a list of 20 cities that have the most cultural amenities* for head of population. The highest has to be New York, right? Wrong. New York City comes 13th. Los Angeles, then? Wrong again. LA checks in at #17. Chicago? Forget it. Number 20. So where then, where? Check here.   * defined as ‘museums, libraries, theaters, parks, stadiums’
  • Just in: Composer assaulted, opera cancelled in St Petersburg

    norman lebrecht
    27 Aug 2014 | 10:00 am
    Ilya Demutsky, whose opera on the Pussy Riot protesters won an award in Italy last year, has been physically attacked in St Petersburg after being lured to a public location for a supposed television interview. Dumtsky claims his latest opera, about a paedophile hunter who resembles a Russian nationalist, has been cancelled by several venues and threats have been made against his life. Read here (in English).  
  • What did this German composer get up to in Paris?

    norman lebrecht
    27 Aug 2014 | 9:47 am
    In an eight-month stay in Paris in 1737-8, Georg Philipp Telemann changed his style, his mood, the very character of his music. What on earth was going on in his life? A selection of Telemann’s Paris music is my Album of the Week on  
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  • Was Your Group Late To The Domain Name Party?

    Drew McManus
    28 Aug 2014 | 12:00 am
    In case you missed it, .com, .org, and .net extensions aren’t the only options for top level domain extensions and the current transition period isn’t unlike the switch from three primary network television providers to the hundreds that came into existence once cable entered the scene. If your organization was slow on the domain name registration draw ( belongs to Boston, not Baltimore, Bakersfield, Broward, Baton Rouge, Bangor, Bloomington, or Billings) or haven’t come up with a clever way to recapture part of the acronym (like BSOmusic, which belongs to Baltimore)…
  • Tired Of The Ice Bucket Challenge?

    Drew McManus
    27 Aug 2014 | 12:00 am
    Composer/keyboardist Jordan Rudess is sick of ice bucket challenge videos (h/t Ed Goldstein) but unlike most of us who just gripe about it, he did something creative by coming up with his own variation: playing an uber-cool, not-so-easy, chromatic riff in 13/8 while talking about his day. Post by Jordan Rudess. Just in case you need the notes…
  • Atlanta Again? Still.

    Drew McManus
    26 Aug 2014 | 12:00 am
    Well it looks like the news is now official although there have been rumblings about it throughout the usual channels for weeks now: the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (ASO) is headed toward another ugly labor dispute. Anyone who kept a close eye on the 2012 dispute likely understood that the settlement was anything but a resolution. If you missed that work stoppage you can catch up on the details via Adaptistration’s Atlanta Symphony article index and then head over to the 8/25/14 edition of ArtsATL which published a good overview of impending doom via an article by Jenny Jarvie. In a…
  • Self-Inflicted Wounds

    Drew McManus
    25 Aug 2014 | 12:00 am
    There’s a fascinating blog post by John Pavlovitz from 8/15/2014 that’s worth your time. If you’re wondering who John Pavlovitz is, join the club. I have no idea beyond what’s available at his about page, but his post caught my eye because a great deal of it applies to the orchestra field; so much so that you can practically swap out a few keys words from his topic (church/religion) with those from our field (i.e. orchestra/classical music) without diluting the impact. Edited Title: Church Orchestra, Here’s Why People Are Leaving You. Edited Opening: Being on…
  • Sick Day

    Drew McManus
    22 Aug 2014 | 12:00 am
    <sarcasm>Hooray for summer colds!</sarcasm> I’m under the weather today but fortunately, there’s no shortage of great content out there and one article in particular tackles the very touchy subject of what to do with employees that toe the Return on Investment line and how some groups just keep borderline employees around “just because.” Don’t think this applies to middle or entry level managers, in fact, I witness this phenomenon far more often in the executive ranks but don’t stick around here and risk catching my cold, head over to Joe…
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  • Style Points

    Matthew Guerrieri
    27 Aug 2014 | 8:27 am
    Looking around, listening around, culture is as stylistically non-hegemonic as I’ve ever experienced. But parallel to that is a kind of greater semiotic compartmentalization: the vast majority of cultural artifacts I encounter keenly announce their stylistic allegiance early and often.
  • Dying From Exposure

    Isaac Schankler
    26 Aug 2014 | 7:31 am
    What is not problematic on an individual level can become catastrophic on a larger level, and I worry that we are rapidly ruling out pretty much every scenario that would allow a typical musician to make a living.
  • What Are We Afraid Of?

    R. Andrew Lee
    25 Aug 2014 | 7:32 am
    It's important to put your best face forward professionally. We're all hustling for gigs, and it doesn't make sense to do anything but make yourself look as appealing as possible. But perhaps there is another layer to it.
  • The Media and the Message

    Dean C. Minderman
    21 Aug 2014 | 7:44 am
    Knowing the specifics about each media outlet in your area can help you to target your communications more effectively. And there’s no real reason one has to choose between traditional and social media; a comprehensive communications plan should include both.
  • Robert Honstein: Oblique Strategies

    Frank J. Oteri
    20 Aug 2014 | 7:08 am
    One of the themes Robert Honstein frequently comes back to in his pieces is technology and how it impacts on our lives, yet ironically his music thus far has been anything but high-tech. Aside from the occasional electric guitar or electric bass, Honstein's timbral palette consists predominantly of acoustic instruments. If that somehow seems contradictory, it’s more a by-product of his being attuned to the world we currently live in but not feeling straitjacketed by it.
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    Alex Ross: The Rest Is Noise

  • Art and politics, Strauss and Pound

    Alex Ross
    20 Aug 2014 | 10:29 am
    As If Music Could Do No Harm. New Yorker website.
  • The L.A. Phil at the Hollywood Bowl

    Alex Ross
    19 Aug 2014 | 11:10 am
    Under the Stars. The New Yorker, Aug. 25, 2014.
  • Schubert in brief

    Alex Ross
    7 Aug 2014 | 6:40 pm
    Unfinished Symphony. The New Yorker, Aug. 11, 2014.
  • A Fine moment

    Alex Ross
    2 Aug 2014 | 7:47 pm
    A Kyle Gann list of American symphonies got me thinking about my own favorites in the genre. Certainly, I'd second many of Kyle's choices. Two additions: William Levi Dawson's Negro Folk Symphony, a neglected delight, and the piercing Symphony (1962) of Irving Fine, whose centenary will arrive at the end of the year. (Contrary to the caption in the YouTube upload above, Fine himself is the conductor.)
  • Wagnerism alert: Penny Dreadful

    Alex Ross
    25 Jul 2014 | 12:45 pm
    My thoughtful husband alerted me to the fact that on a recent episode of the Victorian-Gothic series Penny Dreadful the Wild West character played by Josh Hartnett is so overcome by the strains of Tristan und Isolde, not to mention several glasses of absinthe, that he is inspired to begin making out with none other than Dorian Gray (portrayed by Reeve Carney, previously a singing Spider-Man). "I'd ask if you had heard of Wagner," Gray asks, "but you'd pretend you hadn't." Opera Fresh has more coverage of the show's saucy operatic goings-on.
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  • Birthdays and Commemoration at the Proms–Birtwistle, Davies, Rands, and others

    Rodney Lister
    28 Aug 2014 | 1:15 am
    The birthdays of Harrison Birtwistle and Peter Maxwell Davies, both of whom turn 80 in 2014, is one of the major focuses of this year’s Proms. Each has a complete Proms Portrait matinee concerts in Cadogan Hall dedicated to their music on August 30 (Davies) and September 6 (Birtwistle), and Davies’s birthday, on September 8, is marked with a late night Prom in the Albert Hall. Unfortunately I will not be around for any of those concerts, but I have heard other concerts marking the birthdays. On August 9, in Cadogan Hall on a Saturday matinee concert combined the birthday strand with…
  • Benedict Mason at the Proms

    Rodney Lister
    20 Aug 2014 | 12:38 am
    Not only is it hard to describe Benedict Mason’s Meld, which was given it’s first performance on the late night Prom given by the Aurora Orchestra and the choral group Chantage, conducted by Nicholas Collon, on August 16, it’s hard even beginning to think about how to describe it. All of the advance notices of the concert were particularly, and unusually, vague about the details of the work, and even the program claimed to be not at liberty to divulge much information about it. In the concert itself, which began with the Mozart 40th Symphony (played from memory) and also included…
  • Inpire and Jane Manning and some Proms

    Rodney Lister
    14 Aug 2014 | 3:06 am
    For sixteen years now the BBC, as one of its many activities connected with the Proms, has run a program which it calls Inspire, comprising of a competition and several workshops for composers between the ages of 12 and 18. On this last Sunday, composer Fraser Trainer, who chaired the committee of judges for the competition, led a workshop for about two dozen young composers whose activities were related to the works on that night’s Prom, which was presented by the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain. Trainer was joined by six artist instrumentalists, violinist Anna Smith,…
  • Peter Schulthorpe’s Earth Cry

    Jerry Bowles
    9 Aug 2014 | 10:45 am
    A reminder of the muscular, haunting style of Peter Schulthorpe, who passed away a couple of days ago.
  • A belated response to David Byrne

    Anthony Cornicello
    30 Jul 2014 | 7:21 am
    I’m happy to be returning to posting here at Sequenza21.  It has been a while. Recently, a quote from David Byrne was brought to my attention by Joe Benzola in a Facebook post. (The original Byrne post may be found here.)  Although the quote is from 2008, it’s new to me; besides, Byrne was responding to “modern music” written in 1957 as if it was new, so I feel okay with my discussion here. Essentially, Byrne’s comments amount to “why don’t these composers act normal?”  I’ve heard comments like this from my undergraduates, usually…
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    Classical Performance Podcast

  • Kirill Gerstein Plays Weber

    WGBH Educational Foundation
    18 Aug 2014 | 10:00 pm
    Kiril Gerstein plays Weber in the Fraser Performance Studio *** Carl Maria von Weber: Invitation to the Dance, Op. 65 Kiril Gerstein, piano +++ Recorded at WGBH’s Fraser Performance Studio on March 26, 2012 2014 WGBH Educational Foundation
  • Hadelich Plays Ysaÿe and Kreisler

    WGBH Educational Foundation
    29 Jul 2014 | 10:00 pm
    Augustin Hadelich plays Ysaye and Kreisler in our WGBH Studios *** Eugene Ysaye: Sonata No. 4 in E minor, “Kreisler” Augustin Hadelich, violin Fritz Kreisler: Caprice Viennois Augustin Hadelich, violin; Philip Fisher, piano +++ Recorded at WGBH’s Fraser Performance Studio on November 16, 2012 and April 12, 2007 © 2014 WGBH Educational Foundation
  • The Calder Quartet Plays Haydn

    WGBH Educational Foundation
    15 Jul 2014 | 10:00 pm
    The Calder Quartet plays Haydn in WGBH’s Studio One *** Franz Joseph Haydn: String Quartet in G Major, Op. 76, No. I Benjamin Jacobson and Andrew Bulbrook, violins; Jonathan Moerschel, viola; Eric Byers, cello +++ Recorded at WGBH’s Fraser Performance Studio on February 22, 2005 © 2014 WGBH Educational Foundation (photo of Calder Quartet by Autumn de Wilde)
  • Guitarist Eliot Fisk

    WGBH Educational Foundation
    21 Jun 2014 | 10:00 pm
    Turina - Fantasia Sevillanas Ponce - Porti mi Corazon Villa Lobos - Prelude No. 2 Eliot Fisk, guitar © 2014 WGBH Educational Foundation. e-mail: (photo of Eliot Fisk by Keitaro Yoshioka)
  • Strauss's Piano Quartet

    WGBH Educational Foundation
    2 Jun 2014 | 10:00 pm
    Musicians from the Rockport Chamber Music Festival play music by Richard Strauss, in WCRB's Fraser Performance Studio *** Richard Strauss: Piano Quartet in C minor, Op.13 David Deveau, piano; Irina Muresanu, violin; Yinzi Kong, viola; Emmanuel Feldman, cello +++ Recorded at WGBH’s Fraser Performance Studio on June 4, 2008 © 2014 WGBH Educational Foundation. e-mail: (portrait of Richard Strauss by Max Liebermann, via Wikimedia Commons)
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  • A Singular Star

    21 Aug 2014 | 3:00 pm
    The iconic Wendy Whelan bids farewell to New York City Ballet.
  • Glamour and the Tramp

    16 Aug 2014 | 3:00 pm
    This September the NY Philharmonic performs two contrasting programs that feature film music: one of Italian glamour, the other celebrating Charlie Chaplin's most enduring creation.
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  • Undersung heroines: a way to sing them

    28 Aug 2014 | 1:44 am
    After yesterday's little bit of awardish news, a few of us tweeps are starting a #fantasticfemales hashtag to help keep great female achievers in our sights, and yours. We're aiming to tweet about five fantastic females per day each. Please retweet us or tweet your own contributions. And the more men who join in, the better! It's about celebration, after all. Nothing more, nothing less.Here are my first five: 1. SaintHildegard, medieval musician extraordinaire2. Fanny Mendelssohn: the composer who never gave up, despite brother's best efforts3. Claudia Muzio (1889-1936), one of the…
  • Gramophone Awards - for blokes

    27 Aug 2014 | 8:28 am
    Wonderful list of winners for this year's Gramophone Awards. All top-quality stuff, including such luminaries as Jonas Kaufmann, Mahan Esfahani, Jean-Efflam Bavouzet, Arcadi Volodos, Iestyn Davies, Riccardo Chailly...Oh, and, er, all the composers and conductors and instrumentalists are blokes. Great guys. Amazing musicians. Phenomenal talents, the very best in the business. But still, all blokes.Plus ça change.Now, there are some fabulous women involved in the line-up. George Benjamin's opera Written on Skin features the soprano Barbara Hannigan and director Katie Mitchell; there are female…
  • Budapest Festival Orchestra - more!

    27 Aug 2014 | 3:28 am
    I've reviewed the second of the Budapest Festival Orchestra/Iván Fischer Proms for The Arts Desk. Two Brahms symphonies, five stars.About 10 minutes into the Brahms Third Symphony I wanted to check a name in the Budapest Festival Orchestra’s programme. I dared to turn a page. Bad idea. Such preternatural stillness had settled over the sold-out Royal Albert Hall that the gesture could probably have been spotted from the balcony. A motionless, virtually breathless audience is a rarity even at the Proms, where quality of listening is venerated; still, to hold around 6000 people quite so rapt…
  • Must great conductors be control freaks?

    26 Aug 2014 | 1:41 am
    After the first of two Proms by the Budapest Festival Orchestra, last night at the RAH, I'm pondering about what a great conductor can teach us about how to run things. Because running things, in general, is not the strong point of the planet right now. As you know, institutions of all kinds are mired in hesitation, disagreement, argument, ideology, trumped-up fears re political correctness, and so forth - a situation that puts our ideals and long-established triumphs (like the NHS and the BBC) in jeopardy. We need some life lessons from music: when it works as wonderfully as this, why does…
  • The ice-bucket comes to opera...

    25 Aug 2014 | 5:35 am
    My latest interviewee tried to sing his way out of the ALS ice-bucket challenge - did his pals agree? The Times of Malta (clue to identity there) has the story and video here. Our tenorial hero's three next nominees include Bryn Terfel...With all of this going on, don't be too surprised if there's a sudden spurt of opera singers succumbing to chills.
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  • New Culture Minister in France

    Charles T. Downey
    27 Aug 2014 | 9:19 pm
    In France over the weekend, the government of prime minister Manuel Valls, formed only four months ago, resigned. That meant that all of the ministers had to be replaced, including Culture Minister Aurélie Filippetti, who got on the wrong side of the intermittents du spectacle this summer. President François Hollande raised some eyebrows by appointing Filippetti's historic rival, Fleur Pellerin,
  • Briefly Noted: New Michael Haydn Oratorio

    Charles T. Downey
    26 Aug 2014 | 9:01 am
    Johann Michael Haydn, Der Kampf der Buße und Bekehrung (Part II), E. Scholl, T. Szaboky, Z. Varadi, Purcell Choir, Orfeo Orchestra, G. Vashegyi (released on July 8, 2014) Carus 83.351 | 79'55" Der Kampf der Buße und Bekehrung was an oratorio premiered early in 1768, composed by three different composers in the service of the Archbishop of Salzburg. The first part was by court composer Anton
  • Briefly Noted: Chordae Freybergensis

    Charles T. Downey
    25 Aug 2014 | 6:01 am
    Te Deum laudamus: Freiberg Cathedral Angel Instruments, Ensemble Freiberger Dom-Music, Chordae Freybergensis, A. Koch (released on August 12, 2014) cpo 777928-2 | 55'45" At the end of the 16th century, a set of thirty historical instruments, or very accurate copies of them, was installed in Freiberg Cathedral, placed in the hands of sculpted golden angels. The group Chordae Freybergensis is part
  • Perchance to Stream: Back to School Edition

    Charles T. Downey
    24 Aug 2014 | 7:48 am
    Here is your regular Sunday selection of links to online audio and online video from the week gone by. After clicking to an audio or video stream, press the "Play" button to start the broadcast. Some of these streams become unavailable after a few days. Watch the production of Strauss's Der Rosenkavalier from the Salzburg Festival, directed by Harry Kupfer and conducted by Franz Welser-Möst,
  • Notes from the 2014 Salzburg Festival ( 12 ) Salzburg contemporary • Dalbavie • Anton Bruckner Cycle • Bruckner I

    23 Aug 2014 | 3:00 am
    Salzburg contemporary • Dalbavie • Jaroussky • ORF RSO Dalbavie Beauties, Bruckner Woes ABOVE AND BELOW PICTURES (DETAILS) COURTESY SALZBURG FESTIVAL, © SILVIA LELLI. CLICK FOR THE WHOLE PICTURE. The low lesser-prestige orchestras at the Salzburg Festival get to play in the Felsenreitschule, which is where the ORF Radio Symphony Orchestra performed the least attractive (or least prestigious, at
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    The Rambler

  • Jones-Bulley – Living Symphonies

    Tim Rutherford-Johnson
    18 Aug 2014 | 8:33 am
    Last month I visited the studio of James Bulley and Daniel Jones in southeast London. I’d heard about their Living Symphonies project and James had invited me to come and have a look behind the scenes. Living Symphonies is an elaborate piece of acoustic ecology/data art/environmental installation that has been presented in three UK forests this … Continue reading →
  • Andriessen’s De Staat coming to Peckham

    Tim Rutherford-Johnson
    28 Jul 2014 | 8:58 am
    Too much work, school holidays, home building work going on, don’t think I’m going to get time to do a proper Secret Music for August. But it would be remiss of me if I didn’t draw your attention at least to the return of the Multi-Story Orchestra to Peckham Car Park on 7 and 8 … Continue reading →
  • Digital classicism

    Tim Rutherford-Johnson
    25 Jul 2014 | 4:37 am
    Theory (no doubt not original): 1. We have entered a new classical era, in which the pervasive use and influence of metrics, best practices, interoperability, regulation and so on (consequences of our particular technological-economic-legal moment) have defined standards of formal “perfection” to which practitioners currently find themselves beholden. I’m thinking particularly in terms of architecture … Continue reading →
  • Contemporary Notation Project: Michael Baldwin

    Tim Rutherford-Johnson
    18 Jul 2014 | 8:06 am
    It gives me great pleasure to welcome Michael Baldwin as the Rambler’s first ever guest poster. Michael is an American artist currently living in Huddersfield, who works around the medium of sound, specifically in contemporary concert-hall music performance contexts. In his words, he is ‘primarily invested in examining the margins of musical performance practice through … Continue reading →
  • Bryn Harrison: Vessels (Recent releases from another timbre, part 3)

    Tim Rutherford-Johnson
    11 Jul 2014 | 4:26 am
    (This post is part of a series looking at recent releases by Sheffield’s another timbre label. See here for the introduction.) Bryn Harrison | Vessels | Philip Thomas, piano | another timbre (at69) Of the current batch of another timbre CDs that I’m reviewing, this one seems the most problematic. I’ve raved about Bryn Harrison’s music … Continue reading →
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    Opera Today

  • Dolora Zajick Premieres Composition
    25 Aug 2014 | 5:42 pm
    At a concert in the Cathedral of Saint Joseph in San Jose, California, on August 22, 2014, a few selections preceded the piece the audience had been waiting for: the world premiere of Dolora Zajick’s brand new composition, an opera scene entitled Roads to Zion.
  • Gluck: Orfeo ed Euridice
    25 Aug 2014 | 9:14 am
    This elegant, smartly-paced film turns Gluck’s Orfeo into a Dostoevskian study of a guilt-wracked misanthrope, portrayed by American countertenor Bejun Mehta.
  • Aureliano in Palmira in Pesaro
    23 Aug 2014 | 6:17 am
    Ossia Il barbiere di Siviglia. Why waste a good tune.
  • Santa Fe Opera Presents Huang Ruo's Sun Yat-sen
    22 Aug 2014 | 3:15 pm
    By emphasizing the love between Sun Yat-sen and Soong Ching-ling, Ruo showed us the human side of this universally revered modern Chinese leader. Writer Lindsley Miyoshi has quoted the composer as saying that the opera is “about four kinds of love.” It speaks of affection between friends, between parents and children, between lovers, and between patriots and their country.
  • Britten War Requiem - Andris Nelsons, CBSO, BBC Prom 47
    22 Aug 2014 | 10:20 am
    In light of the 2012 half-centenary of the premiere in the newly re-built Coventry Cathedral of Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem, the 2013 centennial celebrations of the composer’s own birth, and this year’s commemorations of the commencement of WW1, it is perhaps not surprising that the War Requiem - a work which was long in gestation and which might be seen as a summation of the composer’s musical, political and personal concerns - has been fairly frequently programmed of late. And, given the large, multifarious forces required, the potent juxtaposition of searing English poetry and…
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    aworks :: "new" american classical music

  • aworks album log :: august 27, 2014 #shadow #inc #fourtet

    27 Aug 2014 | 9:02 pm
    American classical: Bang on a Can All-Stars - In C A denser, less vibrant recording of the canonical minimal work by Terry Riley. AllMusic said it may be the "most innovative version of the work thus far." Great, I'm a traditionalist when it comes to minimalism. [Cantaloupe] Xenia Pestova - Shadow Piano Works for keyboards and electronics from composers new to me, American and British. There's a companion book of photography, obviously not part of the release on rdio. [Innova Recordings] Beyond: Four Tet - Beautiful Rewind Parallel Jalebi and Our Navigation were interesting but I was…
  • aworks album log :: august 25, 2014 #victory #uncovered

    25 Aug 2014 | 10:45 pm
    American classical: Erich Kunzel, Cincinnati Pops Orchestra - Victory at Sea and Other Favorites [Telarc]. I'm reading several books about the Pacific Ocean battles in World War II so it was time to listen to this old Richard Rodgers chestnut from an old TV series, albeit in a newer recording. Wikipedia says it was a favorite of Richard Nixon and played at his funeral. The album also has Colonel Bogey March etc. Jan Boland, John Dowdall - Red Cedar Collection - American Music for Flute & Guitar [Red Cedar Chamber Music]. A nice respite after War in the Pacific, particularly Caprice by…
  • Wild Arc (2013). Lee Weisert #electro-acoustic #timpani

    8 Aug 2014 | 9:42 pm
    Lee Weisert is a professor at the University of North Carolina. Wild Arc is from a fresh sounding album of what I assume to be electro-acoustic music. In the work Wild Arc, it's "electronically manipulated timpani recordings and the acoustic source is not obvious, even if the end result is pleasing.
  • Electrikaleidoscope (1972). George Rochbert #listeninglog #rock #nostalgia

    14 Jul 2014 | 8:12 pm
    George Rochberg's Electrikaleidoscope, with its amplified ensemble of flute, clarinet, cello, piano and electronic piano, is an artifact of the Seventies. From a Village Voice review: Though this piece has its amusing moments and seems tongue-in-cheek for a while, it leaves one with the impression that a serious statement has been made. Throughout the work the composer never stands above the traditions he is referring to, taking potshots at them, but relates to each one on a sincere level, employing his own astute craftsmanship to make his own kind of Beethoven and his own kind of rock……
  • Henry Jacobs. Sonata for Loudspeaker (1953-54) #listeninglog #kpfa

    13 Jul 2014 | 4:28 pm
    Henry Jacobs is a name new to me. He is an American sound artist who presented taped recordings at KPFA in Berkeley in the 1950s. As of 2005, he was living somewhere on the coast of Northern California. So far, the music is only of historical interest. listening log: Henry Jacobs. Sonata for Loudspeaker. Radio Programm no.1: Henry Jacobs' Music and Folklore Henry Jacobs. Loop 2-Channel Rhythms. Radio Programm no.1: Henry Jacobs' Music and Folklore James P. Johnson. Felicity Rag. William Albright - Ragtime James P. Johnson. Eccentricity-Syncopated Waltz. William Albright - Ragtime James P.
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    The Collaborative Piano Blog

  • Time for Three Takes on Bullying with Stronger

    Chris Foley
    21 Aug 2014 | 11:37 am
    Time for Three is a string trio originally from the Curtis Institute but now in residence with the Indianapolis Symphony. Their unique style blends first-rate playing with some imaginative arrangements and video concepts. Their video for Stronger looks at the important issues of music education and bullying in the schools: You can check out the backstory for Stronger here. Time for Three are:Zach De Pue, violinNick Kendall, violinRanaan Meyer, double bassBTW one can't mention bullying and classical music in the same sentence without this famous Bizarro comic coming to mind.
  • Ask the Readers: Which Collaborative Piano Programs Are Best for a Student from China?

    Chris Foley
    19 Aug 2014 | 5:39 am
    eugenephoen / ccA few days ago, a reader posed this question on the long-running discussion of the Degree and Diplomas in Collaborative Piano post:I'm helping a Chinese friend search for the best US university for an MM in Collaborative Piano. If you could offer some advice that'd be great. Thanks for the comment and important question! That's one of the central issues for the increasingly large influx of pianists coming from China looking for collaborative piano degrees at the Master of Music level. The choices of these pianists won't just be about choosing the most famous teacher, but…
  • What I've Been Up To Lately

    Chris Foley
    17 Aug 2014 | 7:41 pm
    The exam room in Calgary SW last week. How appropriate!This summer is one of those times where so many projects are in development and coming up to completion that it can be difficult to take stock of exactly how things fit in perspective. Here's a short list of my current and recent projects:Finishing up a tour of duty examining in southern Alberta this month, after previous trips to Vancouver, Surrey, Trail, and Nelson in BC this June. Working as Artistic Consultant alongside producer Anton Kwiatkowski for the recordings for the upcoming 2015 Piano Syllabus of the Royal Conservatory.
  • Uncovering a Hidden Gem: Joseph Szulc's Clair de Lune

    Chris Foley
    6 May 2014 | 7:33 am
    One of the most beautiful things about exploring the art song tradition is that every so often you uncover a song by an unknown composer that speaks with such elegance and beauty that you're astonished not to have heard it before.While preparing for a Vocal Lit class at the Glenn Gould School last week I found just one of those buried treasures: a 1907 setting of Verlaine's Clair de lune by Polish/French composer and conductor Joseph Szulc. Although the Fauré and Debussy settings are far more well known, Szulc's setting has an undoubtedly French intimacy and sensuality that stands up to the…
  • Class Piano/Collaborative Pianist Position at the University of Arkansas

    Chris Foley
    28 Apr 2014 | 3:37 am
    In addition to the previous position mentioned at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, here is another listing for their Fayetteville campus:Description: The University of Arkansas Department of Music is seeking a nine-month, non-tenure track Instructor of Class Piano to teach class piano courses for music and non-music majors with secondary duties as a collaborative pianist. Candidates currently in temporary or non-tenured positions will be considered. Starting date is August 18, 2014. A Master’s degree in CP is the minimum requirement, DMA preferred. Full information on the…
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    parterre box

  • The virgin Einspring

    La Cieca
    27 Aug 2014 | 4:20 pm
    Jamie Barton will make her San Francisco Opera debut as Adalgisa in Norma for five of the opera’s seven performances on September 5, 10, 14, 27 and 30. Ms. Barton replaces Daveda Karanas, who has withdrawn from the production for personal reasons. [San Francisco Opera]
  • Ships in the night

    La Cieca
    27 Aug 2014 | 9:27 am
    As dear Rosalind Russell once said, “Politics makes strange bedclothes,” and none surely are stranger than the juxtaposition of the Metropolitan Opera and political blog Wonkette, which today offers a stinging takedown of the wingnuttery behind the movement to remove The Death of Klinghoffer from the Met’s fall schedule.
  • Past perfect

    Patrick Mack
    26 Aug 2014 | 5:20 am
    With much laying-on of fanfares and gift boxes our friends at Decca Classics have unleashed Luciano Pavarotti Edition 1: The First Decade on a weary and satiated public. This is the inaugural offering of a planned troika of box sets commemorating the business dealings of the Modenese tenor to that British label. There was no holier alliance in all of classical recording (save Karajan and whatever label he deemed worthy) since, unlike the vast majority of classical artists, Luciano Pavarotti sold enough records to not only underwrite the projects he participated in but to keep Decca flush…
  • Coeurs amoureux

    La Cieca
    25 Aug 2014 | 6:40 am
    La Cieca hears that the opening night of the Met’s 2018-2019 season will be a new production of Samson et Dalila featuring Bryan Hymel and Elina Garanca.
  • Brooklyn Queen Express

    La Cieca
    25 Aug 2014 | 3:04 am
    Our own Jungfer Marianne Leitmetzerin delves back into those days when there was another opera company in New York, and (what’s more) the opera done there was worth hearing. Gaetano Donizetti: Roberto Devereux New York City Opera Julius Rudel, conductor 24 October 1970 In-house recording Elisabetta I – Beverly Sills Roberto Devereux – Plácido Domingo Sara, duchessa di Nottingham – Susanne Marsee Duca di Nottingham – Louis Quilico Lord Cecil – John Lankston Sir Gualtiero Raleigh – David Rae Smith Un servo di Nottingham – Don Yule Un paggio – Jack Bittner Dedicated to the…
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    The Wagnerian

  • Richard Wagner presents Lohengrin

    28 Aug 2014 | 12:29 am
    Richard Wagner presents Lohengrin 3rd September 2014 to 5th September 2014.18:30 to 20:00 Rhodes University. South AfricaJamie has now very kindly uploaded all of his Dutchman performance - with music and media to his website. You can watch it by following this link. Following the dramatised readings of The Flying Dutchman and Tannhäuser last year, Jamie McGregor again reprises the role of Richard Wagner reading the text of his opera Lohengrin. The reading has been designed to introduce and complement an original audio-visual presentation of the opera itself, subdivided into…
  • Want to take part in some Wagner research?

    21 Aug 2014 | 5:08 am
    Text and request below is from the research team - not "The Wagnerian"Listening for Leitmotives in Wagner It's hard to hear anything mentioned about the music of Richard Wagner without also hearing someone mention the word 'leitmotif'. Leitmotifs, if you are unfamiliar with the term, are small, dynamic musical ideas that are associated with a person, place, idea, or feeling. These leitmotifs undergo many different transformations throughout Wagner's operas and most importantly, contribute to the dramatic narrative. While this may be common knowledge to most musicologists, how different groups…
  • Bernd Weikl: Why Richard Wagner needs to be banned in Germany

    21 Aug 2014 | 4:46 am
    Bernd Weikl, yes the baritone well known for his Wagner roles, argues that Wagner's work not only should but must be banned in Germany. Why? Well, it seems that after a very, financially, successful career performing Wagner, he has just discovered that Wagner was anti-Semitic [must have come as a surprise that, after all these years - Ed]. And not only was Wagner anti-Semitic but, according to Weikl, so are his dramas and operas [One hopes certain Wagner specialists - and the odd second rate Wagner conductor and opera director - are proud of themselves - Ed]. Indeed, so convinced is he of his…
  • Listen Now: When Tolkien Stole Wagner's Ring

    20 Aug 2014 | 4:07 pm
    Tolkien always vehemently denied any connection between his Lord of the Rings and Wagner's Ring Cycle. He once said: 'Both rings were round, and there the resemblance ceased'.But there is almost certainly more to it than that. Tolkien used the same Norse legends as Wagner for inspiration in 'Lord of the Rings', but it also seems likely that he took the original idea of an all-powerful and corrupting ring directly from Wagner. So why did he deny it? Perhaps Tolkien felt the taint of the Nazi associations that surrounded Wagner's music at the time he was writing. Perhaps he simply found…
  • Das Rhinegold: Malicious Dwarfs, Fair Nymphs & Heroic Gods

    20 Aug 2014 | 3:49 pm
    Malicious Dwarfs, Fair Nymphs, Heroic Gods. Application and Transformation of Germanic Mythology in Richard Wagner’s libretto The Rhinegold Martin Blawid According to Joachim Heinzle, the Nibelungensage represents the «most German among all German issues». The following essay seeks to analyze in how far the German composer Richard Wagner resorts either to a more traditional or to a more innovative representation of the Germanic influences in his libretto The Rhinegold, which is the opening part of his operatic tetralogy The Ring of the Nibelungen. Moving from an epistemological…
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    Naxos AudioBooks New Releases

  • TROLLOPE, A.: Dr. Thorne (Unabridged) (NA0158)

    31 Jul 2014 | 5:00 pm
  • HEYER, G.: Faro's Daughter (Unabridged) (NA0184)

    31 Jul 2014 | 5:00 pm
    Fiery, strong-willed Deb Grantham, who presides over a gaming house with her aunt, is hardly the perfect wife for the young and naive Lord Mablethorpe. His lordship’s family are scandalised that he proposes to marry one of ‘faro’s daughters’, and his cousin—the proud, wealthy Max Ravenscar—decides to take the matter in hand. Ravenscar always gets his way, but as he and Miss Grantham lock horns, they become increasingly drawn to each other. Amidst all the misunderstandings and entanglements, has Ravenscar finally met his match?
  • WALPOLE, H.: Castle of Otranto (The) (NA0186)

    31 Jul 2014 | 5:00 pm
    The Castle of Otranto is regarded as the first Gothic novel. The son of Manfred, Prince of Otranto, is mysteriously killed on his wedding day by a huge helmet. The event leads to a fast-paced story of jealous passion, intrigue, murder and supernatural phenomena unfolding in an atmosphere of thunderclaps, moonlight and dark castle walls—mirroring the inner turmoils of the characters themselves. Horace Walpole’s tale, an immediate success when it first appeared in 1764, is a classic of its genre.
  • BRONTE, C.: Shirley (Unabridged) (NA0171)

    31 Jul 2014 | 5:00 pm
    Following the tremendous success of Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë returned to pen a novel every bit as romantic and compelling as her first, but with deeper, heartier themes as she captured the social and political currents of the newly industrialised United Kingdom of 1812. Set in a chaotic time in England, during the height of the Napoleonic Wars, Caroline Helstone’s world is turned upside down when she meets the vivacious Shirley Keeldar. Shirley becomes a beacon of light for Caroline as the two become close friends. However, Caroline is soon shocked to discover that Shirley has…
  • COLLINS, W.: Moonstone (The) (Unabridged) (NA0162)

    30 Jun 2014 | 5:00 pm
    Upon inheriting the Moonstone, a huge and priceless diamond, Rachel Verinder’s delight turns to dismay when the gem suddenly disappears. But this is no ordinary theft. Sergeant Cuff of Scotland Yard is called in and immediately suspects an intricate plot. However, not even his powers of detection can penetrate fully the mysteries surrounding the diamond. And as we listen to each character’s version of the events, layer upon layer of drama and suspense build to the final and astonishing denouement of this magnificent, classic English detective novel.
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    Kenneth Woods- conductor

  • CD Review- Music and Vision Daily on Philip Sawyers- Orchestral Music

    Kenneth Woods
    19 Aug 2014 | 9:54 am
    A new review from Music and Vision Daily for Philip Sawyers’ Cello Concerto, Second Symphony and Concertante for Violin, Piano and Strings on Nimbus Records. Click here to read the whole thing (subscription required). A short sample follows: Philip Sawyers- Symphony no. 2, Cello Concerto, Concertante for Violin, Piano and Strings £12.00 Add to cart “….And now here is Philip Sawyers with an effortless demonstration that the history of music can proceed in an unbroken line and that music of yesterday can easily accommodate the best products of today. As an…
  • Explore the Score- Brahms, Serenade No. 1 in D major (reconstruction of original version for nonet)

    Kenneth Woods
    17 Aug 2014 | 3:40 pm
    Schoenberg- Verklärte Nacht, Brahms Serenade no. 1- Original Chamber Versions £12.00 Add to cart [Click here to Explore the Score of the companion work on this CD, Schoenberg's Verklarte Nacht] The Brahms-Wagner rivalry was largely an affair of the press, whipped up by critics like the Brahmsian Eduard Hanslick and his pro-Wagnerian rivals. Brahms actually professed great admiration for Wagner’s music on many occasions. Nonetheless, there was a time when the two men were perceived as embodying irreconcilable aesthetic approaches. In the end, it was Arnold Schönberg who succeeded in…
  • CD Review- Classical Source on Philip Sawyers, Orchestral Music

    Kenneth Woods
    12 Aug 2014 | 11:10 am
    A new review from Robert Matthew-Walker at Classical Source. Read the whole thing here   Philip Sawyers- Symphony no. 2, Cello Concerto, Concertante for Violin, Piano and Strings £12.00 Add to cart     A short sample follows with regard to Sawyers’s compositions: they speak naturally, seriously, but by no means doggedly; his music is emotionally direct and always involving the intelligent listener. This is the kind of music for which many people have been secretly hoping for years. The First Symphony (commissioned by the Grand Rapids Symphony for its 75th-anniversary)…
  • Facebook ate my blog

    Kenneth Woods
    5 Aug 2014 | 10:37 am
    We’ve been hearing for a few years about the death of blogs. Certainly, blogs are not dead. When I started Vftp I could find no other active conductor blogs- none.  A number of wise heads warned me that conductors should keep quiet- the more you go on record with your beliefs, the more people will disagree with you and the more jobs you’ll be locked out of.  Now there are hundreds of conductor blogs, although many performers never get much beyond their “Hi and welcome to my blog- I’m really looking to sharing all sorts of stories and insights from my fascinating life as a jetsetting…
  • CD Review- Fiona Maddocks, The Observer on Brahms and Schoenberg with Epomeo and Swan

    Kenneth Woods
    3 Aug 2014 | 8:37 am
    “Few, though, will have heard this nonet version of the Serenade, reconstructed by Alan Boustead in the 1980s, for strings, flute, two clarinets, bassoon and horn. In this live recording a slightly chubby ugly duckling in its orchestral format suddenly achieves lightness and clarity. Thanks to this aptly named Stratford-based ensemble, it has turned into a swan.”        
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    Iron Tongue of Midnight

  • Cast Change Announcement: Jamie Barton to Make SF Opera Debut

    27 Aug 2014 | 3:11 pm
    Whoa: nine days before opening night, Daveda Karanas withdraws from singing Adalgisa in the Norma production, "for personal reasons." Jamie Barton steps in for the September 5, 10, 14, 27 and 30 performances. The press release says that a further announcement will be made for the September 19 and 23 performances.Okay, that's decent payback for losing Barton for last year's Verdi Requiem, when she was singing Adalgisa at the Met.
  • Finale

    26 Aug 2014 | 7:18 pm
    Courtesy of Boosey & Hawkes From his web page at Boosey & Hawkes: Elliott Carter’s final world premiere will take place at Carnegie Hall during the 2014–15 season; the work, The American Sublime, will be performed by the MET Chamber Ensemble under the baton of James Levine.  It is on a great program that the man himself would have liked a lot:STRAVINSKY OctetIVES From the Steeples and the MountainsIVES Scherzo: Over the PavementsCARTER The American Sublime (Word Premiere)CAGE Atlas Eclipticalis CHARLES WUORINEN It Happens Like ThisThe MET Chamber EnsembleJames Levine,…
  • Stagehands Union and Met Reach Settlement

    20 Aug 2014 | 10:33 am
    IATSE Local One, representing the stagehands, and the Met have reached a settlement. Several unions still do not have new contracts, but evidently the Met won't lock them out. From different locations in the press release:Final negotiations will take place tomorrow with eight smaller unions representing behind-the-scenes Met personnel. All are expected to reach agreements, preventing a potential labor crisis at the nation’s largest performing arts organization.The remaining unions with unsettled contracts include six unions represented by IATSE: Local 751 (box office treasurers), Local 764…
  • Received in the Email, or, How to Pitch

    19 Aug 2014 | 5:13 pm
    I got an email a day or so ago about what sounds like an interesting project. However, upon careful examination of said email, I can say unequivocally that the writer took the wrong approach.First, it started by saying the writer "loves my blog" and "what I do for the music community." Okay, fine.But then the writer told me how much she'd like to write a posting for my blog. Well, phooey: if you think I'm going to publish a guest post, you're not reading me very carefully, even if you love my blog. In 2,661 postings, I have published no, zip, zero, nada guest postings. I mean, as far as I can…
  • Concessions on Both Sides

    18 Aug 2014 | 5:37 pm
    According to Michael Cooper's report, both management and labor made some concessions in the Met's negotiations. What I find most interesting is that the apparent actual wage cuts for labor were much lower than either the labor allegation that the Met wanted 25% or the Met statement that the Met wanted 17%.In fact, the cuts, which have some unusual features, are so low that one wanders whether all the sabre-rattling and threats were necessary.
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    Musical Assumptions

  • My Mother's Art

    23 Aug 2014 | 9:58 am
    My mother started to paint seriously around the time that she lost the ability to play the flute, and she stopped doing artwork when she lost the ability to see (I wrote a post about it in 2006). Rather than have it sit in her closets for nobody to see, my brother and I thought it best to bring our mother's paintings and drawings to Memphis (where he lived) so that they could remain safe within our family. The car my brother was driving on August 7th was carrying our mother's artwork. Michael and I brought the paintings and other family items along with Marshall's laptop computer back from…
  • A Beautiful Tribute to my Brother Marshall

    22 Aug 2014 | 12:34 pm
    The Memphis Commercial Appeal newspaper ran a beautiful obituary for Marshall today.
  • Regarding Grief and Regarding Marshall

    20 Aug 2014 | 11:21 am
    The modern way of computer-assisted grief is surreal. Because so many of my brother's friends communicate by way of Facebook, I found (and still find) myself in a state of having to deal with something that is deeply personal and deeply complicated in a public way. The constant stream of kind thoughts and carefully worded messages of condolence have helped me to feel very far from alone, so some of the attention has been most welcome.I have also been stung by the occasional unintentional violation of boundaries by people I do not know. Everyone's family has its specific ways of relating to…
  • Marshall Fine (1956-2014)

    19 Aug 2014 | 7:02 am
    This a very sad time for our family and for Marshall's many friends, colleagues, and students. Memories of Marshall (which are ALWAYS interesting and colorful) are welcome in the comments.
  • A Prayer for Marshall in the form of Bach

    14 Aug 2014 | 10:20 am
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    eighth blackbird » Blog

  • New Digs!

    18 Aug 2014 | 4:34 pm
    Windows!! A view of our rehearsal setup. The meeting room/lounge. Eeek! Building those mega-shelves took several people and multiple props. Ahhhh. Everything up on shelves and organized. Plenty of room for dancing now. Matthew's organized chaos. More organized chaos.   It’s finally happened. After years of talking and searching, we officially moved into our new studio space last week and spent the better part of the week getting it organized and functioning. We’re not that far from our former Ravenswood studio, but we’ve traded our former concrete box with nail salon…
  • Sila at Lincoln Center Out of Doors

    28 Jul 2014 | 11:20 am
    Photo by Benjamin Norman for the New York Times   We took a break last weekend from our regularly scheduled vacation to descend upon Lincoln Center Plaza for the world premiere of John Luther Adams’ Sila.  The experience of tuning in (literally) not just to faraway pitches, but to my breath and the breath of so many other people, both restless and rapt, and to the surprising presence of nature in middle of New York City (bird poop on my music, spiders on my bow, and a dragonfly parked on my stand) was truly soul-broadening. It was an extraordinary journey for all the…
  • Guest Post: Katrina Leshan

    25 Jun 2014 | 11:44 am
      My first memory of new music comes from age 19. I was in Caruth Auditorium at my alma mater Southern Methodist University, and a group of six musicians I had never heard of had won the Meadows Prize: a $10,000 year-long residency at the Meadows School of the Arts. The first of their visits included a concert, during which Steve Reich’s Double Sextet was performed. As I sat in the back of the hall and listened to eighth blackbird and my peers perform this Pulitzer Prize-winning composition, I experienced actual awe. The sounds coming from that stage were unlike anything I had ever…
  • 8bb plays the sidewalk with David Lee Csicsko and Michael Ward-Bergeman

    17 Jun 2014 | 6:29 pm
    David in the lee of the Hanig Cow Peter staging a lie-in the final effect Nick getting cozy with his doppelgänger David adding some color Michael Tim by the steps of the Chicago Cultural Center Lisa accompanying herself Yvonne Matthew Michael Ward-Bergeman The accordion that swallowed a fly rehearsing with Michael Ward-Bergeman   Today we had a long rehearsal with Michael Ward-Bergeman on our rep for our Millennium Park concert this Thursday at 6:30. In between Michael’s entertaining stories about his Gig365 project, we got a little education on the Big Easy and the tradition of…
  • The Unexpected: 2014

    20 May 2014 | 3:49 pm
    Tomorrow we join forces with the other two companies of our Creative Partners team, Lucky Plush Productions and Blair Thomas & Co., at the Dance Center of Columbia College. It’ll be a one-of-a-kind event celebrating the second year of our exciting development partnership, with all three companies performing. A three-fer, if you will. Join us for some great performances and a reception afterwards! Here are the deets: DATE: Wednesday, May 21 TIME: 7:00 pm LOCATION: Dance Center of Columbia College, 1306 S. Michigan Avenue TICKETS: Reserve tickets (use discount code 8BB for $5 off!),…
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    On An Overgrown Path

  • Assuming the audience knows best is always questionable

    27 Aug 2014 | 3:22 am
    The assumption that the audience knows best what it wants is always questionable. The blurring of the distinctions between the giving and receiving of art can be tragic. Everywhere in the West one notices this frightful descent into homogeneity, blurring distinctions obliterating the idiosyncratic, dragging the leaders down and the led up onto some middle ground of fulcrumed banality. Both communism and democracy are systems dedicated to smoothing out differences between men. Of course you can make a congenital dunce into a prime minister but this is no guarantee of improvement in the state.
  • Conservatories have produced a glut of fifth-rate composers

    23 Aug 2014 | 10:24 pm
    Dear Bob, I am a freelance pianist-composer from the smallest state in the USA, and I have a personal stake in some themes you have blogged about recently, to wit, the difficulty faced by new composers in getting heard, and the low income of composers at large. Regarding the first of these themes - Liberty resides in the rights of the music you find most odious - naturally I completely agree with John Stuart Mill's dictum, which is identical in substance to Voltaire's much more famous statement on freedom of speech. I also think that in the particular case you spoke of, where the BBC paid for…
  • The paradox of the Dalai Lama

    20 Aug 2014 | 11:03 pm
    The Paradox of Our Age, a short but powerful essay credited to the present Dalai Lama, is widely available in Ladakh in northern India, a region known as 'Little Tibet'. The text ends with the observation that: 'These are times of fast foods but slow digestion/Tall men but short characters/Steep profits but shallow relationships/It’s a time when there is much in the window but nothing in the room'. Tibetan Buddhism is widely viewed as an appealing alternative to materialistic Western society, so, not surprisingly, The Paradox of Our Age is widely circulated on the internet and Twitter - see…
  • Why are composers paid so little and other paid so much?

    19 Aug 2014 | 3:42 am
    There is quite rightly much indignation about the findings of a survey of fees paid to composers for new music. This report by Sound and Music, the UK agency for new music, reveals that the average fee per commission in 2013 was £1,392. Many people are asking why are composers paid so little? But very few people are asking why are composers paid so little when others in the classical music supply chain are paid so much? For instance, the fee for a single concert by a celebrity conductor - in all probability conducting a tour programme of a Mahler symphony and other works he/she has conducted…
  • Listening to music, and I mean listening hard, alters the music

    18 Aug 2014 | 5:38 am
    The guy who writes the music-themed blog On An Overgrown Path is a bit of an obsessive, but I like that. The entry for 14 August happily happens to chime with a number of my own obsessions. Listening to music, and I mean listening hard, alters the music, and preparing to listen makes it twice as strange. And wonderful.That post by Brian Connor on his blog From a far place appealed to me, because not only does it sum up nicely what I have been saying On An Overgrown Path over the last ten years, but it also hints at the huge untapped potential of the lost art of listening. My own recent…
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    Naxos New Releases

  • PANN, C.: Piano's 12 Sides (The) / The Bills / The Cheese Grater (Hastings) (8.559751)

    31 Jul 2014 | 5:00 pm
    Award-winning composer and pianist Carter Pann is a genuine “musician’s musician”, writing for and working with internationally acclaimed orchestras and ensembles. Composed especially for Joel Hastings, The Piano’s 12 Sides is a remarkable cycle which takes us through song-like introspection, fearless virtuosity, timeless impressions of cosmic realms and dances both ebullient and macabre. The Bills owes its ragtime influence to Scott Joplin while acknowledging two great exponents of the genre. The composer describes The Cheese Grater as “an adrenaline-driven,…
  • Guitar Recital: Buono, Emanuele - MILANO, F. da / AGUADO, D. / RODRIGO, J. / CASTELNUOVO-TEDESCO, M. / JOSÉ, A. (8.573362)

    31 Jul 2014 | 5:00 pm
    Emanuele Buono has established himself as one of the most highly regarded and active guitarists of his generation. His numerous achievements include winning the prestigious Pittaluga competition in 2013. This fascinating programme brings together music from Renaissance Italy, the golden age of the guitar in early 19th-century Europe, and modern classical sounds from 20th-century Spain.
  • BLOCH, E.: Israel / Suite for Viola and Orchestra (Gandelsman, Atlas Camerata Orchestra, Slovak Radio Symphony, Atlas) (8.573283)

    31 Jul 2014 | 5:00 pm
    Bloch’s so-called Jewish Cycle—the Israel Symphony, Schelomo, Trois Poèmes Juifs and the String Quartet—earned the composer the kind of esteem in America that had been lacking in Europe. The Israel Symphony, premièred in Carnegie Hall in 1917, is the cycle’s centrepiece and originally intended as a gigantic three-part work, but later reduced in size. Powerful and evocative, it also fuses pastoral and sensuous elements in a rich tapestry. The award-winning Suite for Viola and orchestra or piano is a rhapsodic but cyclical tour de force, a ‘vision of…
  • EL-KHOURY, B.: Violin Concerto No. 1 / Horn Concerto / Clarinet Concerto (Nemtanu, Guerrier, Messina, Masur, J.-C. Casadesus, Elts) (8.572773)

    31 Jul 2014 | 5:00 pm
    This fifth Naxos release of the music of the Franco-Lebanese composer Bechara El-Khoury features three concertos two of which, for wind instruments, are inspired by specific associations with the natural world of the composer’s native Lebanon. The First Violin Concerto contains allusions to Alban Berg, its outer movements divided by a virtuoso cadenza for the soloist. The composer describes his powerful Horn Concerto as ‘mountains at night… reaching up into the sky and melting into mist and space’, and the Clarinet Concerto as ‘impressions and recollections in…
  • BOWEN, Y.: String Quartets Nos. 2 and 3 / Phantasy-Quintet (Lines, Archaeus String Quartet) (8.571366)

    31 Jul 2014 | 5:00 pm
    Described by Saint-Saëns as ‘the most remarkable of the young British composers’, York Bowen was widely known as a pianist and as a composer, his fame reaching its zenith in the years immediately preceding the First World War. The writer and composer Thomas Dunhill described Bowen’s chamber music as ‘an essentially healthy and breezy phase in modern art’. This is especially true of the 1922 Carnegie Trust Award-winning Second Quartet, and while both quartets are based on clear-cut classical models the Third is more elusive and intimate in feeling, revealing…
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    The Naxos Blog

  • Taking turns

    21 Aug 2014 | 9:00 am
    Like those used on Christmas trees, ornaments in music make melodies more attractive, injecting a bit of zip and sparkle into an otherwise mundane note. Some of them carry technical names that students struggle to remember but, on paper, a simple shorthand sign is used to tell the performer how to execute rhythmic and melodic alterations to those plain notes. Lots of time and ink is spared in the process, since these alterations are often quite complicated to write down. An ‘acciaccatura’, for example, injects a bit of cheeky flippancy by adding a single, quick note in front of…
  • Podcast: Skoryk scores

    14 Aug 2014 | 9:00 am
    Myroslav Skoryk holds the title of People’s Artist of Ukraine and is one of his country’s outstanding composers. Anyone encountering his music for the first time becomes instantly hooked. Raymond Bisha introduces the release of a new disc that presents a varied and highly colourful programme of Skoryk’s works, reaffirming his status both as a national artist and an internationally acclaimed musical voice for his country. Album Details… Cat. No.: 8.573333
  • Taking a toll. Mid-festival at the BBC Proms.

    7 Aug 2014 | 9:00 am
    Next week the BBC Promenade Concerts arrive at their mid-festival point. A number of programmes for the concerts being held during 15-21 August are assembled around themes; unsurprisingly, the centenary of the outbreak of the first world war is marked on 17 August by music written around that dark period in history. Familiar works by Butterworth and Vaughan Williams are paired with less well-known pieces by Rudi Stephan (Music for Orchestra) and Frederick Kelly (Elegy for Strings). We read that the latter was an Olympic rower as well as a deft composer, and that Butterworth was equally…
  • The tingle factor

    31 Jul 2014 | 9:00 am
    Have you ever had that experience – listening to a piece of music, when all of a sudden something uber-beautiful happens and your brain tingles, your scalp takes on a life of its own and you feel waves of electricity pulse over your skin? This is a variety of autonomous sensory meridian response, or ASMR. It doesn’t have to be connected to music, but it is often associated with sounds.  Not everyone experiences this, and it can be hard to convince those who don’t that such sensations are really connected to the intangibilities of music or sound. To point out a more familiar sensation,…
  • Scoring ten

    17 Jul 2014 | 9:29 pm
    Most people know about the curse of the ninth, but if you don’t, here’s a quick explanation. Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, Choral (8.550181) laid down a few benchmarks. Its influence was felt most recently, perhaps, during the dawn of the age of the compact disc. Consideration had to be given to how many minutes of music a standard CD should be able to accommodate. It was decided that the capacity must be long enough to take a complete performance of Beethoven’s last symphony, without spilling over to a second disc. Back to the nineteenth century: Beethoven was already…
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  • An Arresting Release: Anthony Davis “Notes from the Underground”

    Thomas Dempster
    27 Aug 2014 | 5:00 am
    Practically every work by composer Anthony Davis could have been composed today. Long, overlapping rhythmic patterns and formulas that pit portions of the orchestra against each other, as harmonically rich and textured as the doleful tapestries of inequalities in the United States, is a central component of Davis’ oeuvre. What Davis calls his “clones,” cyclical [...] Visit I CARE IF YOU LISTEN's Blog to read more!
  • Submit a Track For Our Fall 2014 Mixtape!

    Thomas Deneuville
    26 Aug 2014 | 3:00 am
    Summer is not over but it is now time to think about Fall and our next mixtape! Do you have a track you’d like to share with our readers? Take a minute to fill out this form. We will listen to every single piece and curate the next mixtape. We will stop accepting submissions after Sept. 18. [...] Visit I CARE IF YOU LISTEN's Blog to read more!
  • This week: concerts in New York (August 25 – August 31, 2014)

    Sam Reising
    25 Aug 2014 | 5:00 am
    Taka Kigawa Pianist Taka Kigawa performs Pierre Boulez’s complete solo piano music. Sunday, August 25 at 7:30 PM Tickets $20-$30 Le Poisson Rouge, 158 Bleecker Street, New York, NY ..:: Website LA CHAMBRE DES JEUX SONORES: Graphic scores for electric guitar CD release concert for guitarist Alessandra Novaga’s album LA CHAMBRE DES JEUX SONORES. Tuesday, [...] Visit I CARE IF YOU LISTEN's Blog to read more!
  • No punches pulled in Size Zero Opera’s Women Box in London

    Paul Kilbey
    21 Aug 2014 | 5:00 am
    Opera’s tough. You can’t just stand there and sing. The minimum requirement for an opera singer is the ability to both sing and act—and that’s plenty, for most. The number of opera singers who would also be prepared to undergo an intensive training program with an ex-pro boxer, solely in order to be able to [...] Visit I CARE IF YOU LISTEN's Blog to read more!
  • Kettle Corn New Music Satisfies Audience’s Sweet Tooth

    Sam Reising
    20 Aug 2014 | 5:00 am
    On Saturday, June 14, 2014, I made the journey over to The DiMenna Center for Classical Music to hear Kettle Corn New Music’s concert featuring the piano trio Typical Music. Typical Music—consisting of Todd Reynolds (violin), Ashley Bathgate (cello), and Vicky Chow (piano)—played a wonderful and diverse program featuring the music of co-founder of Kettle [...] Visit I CARE IF YOU LISTEN's Blog to read more!
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  • How to Make Music So That People Want to Listen

    Grace Miles
    19 Aug 2014 | 10:11 am
    Do you believe in Steinways– legendary hand-made pianos? Whatever type of instrument you love, there’s a way to make music so that people want to listen. This summer, I am taking intensive ballet classes. During a break, I step into a Tom Lee music store in downtown Vancouver. I ask the saleslady to tell me about the grand pianos–because, […]
  • Creating Systems to Get More Done (Better)

    Grace Miles
    12 Aug 2014 | 6:00 am
    I’m going to share one strategy I’ve used to get more done in music, and different areas of life. This is especially effective when you’re working on a new piece of music, or teaching. I started keeping a timesheet recently– I spend a lot of time producing blog posts that never get published. Last week, on a mild summer’s […]
  • 6 Tips for Enjoying a Shakespeare Play (Summer Musician Edition)

    Grace Miles
    2 Aug 2014 | 7:14 am
    I’m not an experienced play-goer. But I have a hunch that the Shakespearean society might be reinventing itself, like German opera. In Vancouver, the classic way to see Shakespeare is by Bard on the Beach. Meeting the producer, Christopher Gaze, was the moment it clicked that I was in for Shakespeare. The charming gentleman speaks like an actor onstage and […]
  • Ann Makosinski & Grace Miles on Public Speaking Tips

    Grace Miles
    1 Aug 2014 | 4:07 pm
    “This girl is unbelievable.” That’s what I first thought when I discovered Ann Makosinski and her work. Plus, she can rock a stage. As an introverted girl (and naturally on the shy side), these are skills I wish I had when starting out, before the dealing with music students’ parents and design pitches. Today, I’m THRILLED to share this […]
  • How You Can Give Better Music Feedback

    Grace Miles
    29 Jul 2014 | 7:26 pm
     We’re kind of obsessed with the “best.” We train in the “best” schools. Chefs cook the “best” meals. We debate about the “best” music technique. You might recall a typical music lesson where the teacher describes the “best” way to play a phrase– light here, mezzoforte there. And the feedback is taken badly. Or, in a music […]
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    Classical Commentary: Barry Lenson's Classical Music Blog

  • Toscanini Genius: The 1954 Ballo Broadcast

    Barry Lenson
    19 Aug 2014 | 6:11 am
    I grew up listening to recordings of Toscanini performances on LP. Mostly, I played a boxed set of Wagner orchestral excerpts so often that the LPs were practically playing both sides at once. I also spent a lot of time listening to the 1947 Toscanini recording of Otello with Ramon Vinay, Herva Nelli and Giuseppe Valdengo. They were great recordings, but I now realize that they lacked punch. Perhaps the engineering and analog vinyl format submerged the immediacy of the actual performances.  That could be why I find a YouTube audio of Un Ballo in Maschera to be so extraordinary and…
  • What Is the Right Way to Play Chopin?

    Barry Lenson
    8 Aug 2014 | 8:07 am
    Over the years, the question of how to play Chopin “correctly” has become a riddle wrapped within an enigma. The usual charge leveled at pianists who play it “wrong” is that they are playing too sentimentally, wallowing in ritardandos and bending rhythms in self-indulgent ways. The One Sure Thing . . . Arthur RubinsteinMost listeners, pianists, and piano pedagogues seem to agree that Arthur Rubinstein’s way of playing Chopin was right. But what does that mean exactly? Fortunately for us, we have his extraordinary recordings and videos, like this one of a mixed group of Chopin…
  • Remembering Carlo Bergonzi

    Barry Lenson
    28 Jul 2014 | 7:08 am
    Carlo Bergonzi, one of the greatest Italian tenors of the last 100 years, just died at age 90. There are a lot of obituaries for him all over the Internet today. If you want to know the story of his extraordinary life, I’d encourage you to read a few of them.On my blog today, I just want to say how lucky I was to hear him sing in a performance of Aida at the Metropolitan Opera back in the 1970s.  It was a performance that I will never forget – impassioned, cultivated, vocally beautiful and secure, and stylistically impeccable too. He was in every way an aristocratic Italian tenor –…
  • Nikolai Medtner and Other Magnificent Anachronisms

    Barry Lenson
    25 Jul 2014 | 9:19 am
    "Afternoon at Cape Cod" by my father Michael Lenson (1903-1971)Note the influence - not dominance- of cubism and abstractionI love artists who are a little behind the times. Perhaps that is because my father Michael Lenson was one of them. He was a fine realist painter who simply refused to paint purely abstract paintings, even during the 1950s when most of his fellow realists were doing just that so they could get their works into juried exhibitions and galleries. Not my dad. He wasn’t about to toss aside his hard-won ability to paint the human figure. He went into his studio every day and…
  • Coming Soon, Carol Oja’s Explosive New Book Reveals Leonard Bernstein’s Role as Civil Rights Champion

    Barry Lenson
    18 Jul 2014 | 2:10 pm
    A few months ago my wife and I went to hear a lecture given by Prof. Carol J. Oja about her upcoming book, Bernstein Meets Broadway: Collaborative Art in a Time of War. Because the lecture was sponsored by the New York Philharmonic, I expected one more evening of adoration directed at Leonard Bernstein by his still-faithful New York Public.I was unprepared for what I heard from Prof. Oja, who is William Powell Mason Professor at Harvard University.  In her quiet and straightforward presentation, she laid out the astonishing story of Bernstein’s fearless support of African-American and…
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    Stars & Catz » Classical Music & Opera Buzz

  • 'Opera Olympics' returns to Los Angeles + MORE

    Oliver Braithwaite
    27 Aug 2014 | 6:53 am
      Today’s News & Buzz   Steve Reich soundtracks Rick Rubin's Ice Bucket Challenge – Minimalist composer Steve Reich hasn’t yet taken the Ice Bucket Challenge, but in a sense he’s done his part. Continue Reading On » Tired Of The Ice Bucket Challenge? – Composer/keyboardist Jordan Rudess is sick of ice […]
  • Birthplace of Another Sonata + MORE

    Oliver Braithwaite
    26 Aug 2014 | 6:23 am
      Today’s News & Buzz   Briefly Noted: Chordae Freybergensis – Te Deum laudamus: Freiberg Cathedral Angel Instruments, Ensemble Freiberger Dom-Music, Chordae Freybergensis, A. Koch (released on August 12, 2014) cpo 777928-2 | 55’45" At the end of the 16th century, a set of thirty historical instruments, or very accurate copies of them, was […]
  • Birthplace of Another Sonata + MORE

    Oliver Braithwaite
    26 Aug 2014 | 6:23 am
      Today’s News & Buzz   Briefly Noted: Chordae Freybergensis – Te Deum laudamus: Freiberg Cathedral Angel Instruments, Ensemble Freiberger Dom-Music, Chordae Freybergensis, A. Koch (released on August 12, 2014) cpo 777928-2 | 55’45" At the end of the 16th century, a set of thirty historical instruments, or very accurate copies of them, was […]
  • Ambitious New Opera Commission Fails To Impress + MORE

    Oliver Braithwaite
    25 Aug 2014 | 5:54 am
      Today’s News & Buzz   Fresh life in Beethoven symphonies – THE Beethoven Festival — all nine symphonies — is the West Australian Symphony Orchestra’s most adventurous act of programming in many years. Continue Reading On » The ice-bucket comes to opera… – My latest interviewee tried to sing his way […]
  • Conservatories have produced a glut of fifth-rate composers + MORE

    Oliver Braithwaite
    24 Aug 2014 | 5:24 am
      Today’s News & Buzz   Wagner in Berwick-upon-Tweed – Berwick-upon-Tweed seems an unlikely  place to go for Wagner but if you visit The Maltings this weekend (23 & 24 August 2014), then Wagner is just what you will find. And not Wagner on the big screen, though The Maltings has an admirable programme […]
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    The Violin Channel | The World's Leading Violin, Strings & Classical Music News Source

  • Chicago’s Ravinia Festival Music Director James Conlon to Stand Down After 11 Summers

    26 Aug 2014 | 10:43 am
    It has been announced today that Chicago’s Ravinia Festival, Music Director James Conlon will stand dow at the end of next summer – after 11 seasons of service. “After a decade as Music Director of the Ravinia Festival, James Conlon has decided not to renew his contract at the conclusion of the 2015 summer season,” President and CEO Welz Kauffman has said in a statement. “Everything has its time,” Mr Conlon has told the Chicago Sun-Times, “… and after 11 years I feel it is the moment to pass on this responsibility … I have worked year-round including every…
  • Study Reveals Commissioned Composers are Disturbingly Poorly Paid

    26 Aug 2014 | 8:24 am
    An alarming survey published by Britain’s national agency for new music, Sound and Music has revealed that the average fee received by a composer is less than USD $2300 per commission. The study, which surveyed 466 working professional composers in the United Kingdom and Europe, also found the average number of commissions received per composer, in 2013 was less than 3. Alarmingly 14% of all respondents additionally stated they expected to earn less from commissions this year than they did in 2014. The study also uncovered, by large, composers in the early stages of their career made…
  • VC BUZZ | Bach, Double Violin Concerto – for Dancing Elephants [VIDEO]

    26 Aug 2014 | 7:26 am
    Watch what happens when Eleanor Bartsch, a violinist performing with the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra at the Circus World Museum, in Wisconsin approaches the elephant enclosure. Not necessarily the reaction you would expect from two elderly mammoths. CIRCUS WORLD MUSEUM | ELEPHANTS KELLY & VIOLA | BACH DOUBLE VIOLIN CONCERTO | ELEANOR BARTSCH The post VC BUZZ | Bach, Double Violin Concerto – for Dancing Elephants [VIDEO] appeared first on The Violin Channel | The World's Leading Violin, Strings & Classical Music News Source.
  • SoundCloud To Introduce Paid Advertisements to Compensate Artists

    25 Aug 2014 | 10:35 pm
    Audio platform, SoundCloud has announced they are set to introduce a paid advertising service, alongside user uploads, to compensate its musicians and content creators. In just 6 years, the Berlin-based company has grown to become the second largest streaming music service in the world, behind Youtube, though despite over 175 million monthly users has thus far generated minuscule revenue – with funding coming mainly from private investors. Independent artists and labels have, to date uploaded original content solely for the lure of building an audience of fans – and to receive the…
  • Two Men Charged Over Murder of New York Violinist, Mary Whitaker

    23 Aug 2014 | 11:26 am
    Two men have been arrested in Erie, Pennsylvania and charged with the murder of 61 year old New York freelance violinist, Mary Elizabeth Whitaker in Westfield, Chautauqua County on Wednesday. Jonathan M. Conklin, 43 and Charles R. Stanford, 30 of unfixed addresses will both face one charge of murder each and a number of charges relating to property stealing, carjacking and credit card offences. Police will allege Ms Whitaker interrupted a burglary in her Upstate New York summer home and was shot in the chest and leg before having her credit cards and car stolen. Whitaker, a violin…
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    Stephen P Brown

  • Why do we still have Car Mechanics?

    20 Aug 2014 | 2:00 pm
    Do you think there is still a place in society for mechanically-driven cars? What about mechanically-produced [acoustic/ live] music? Give me more... →
  • First performance of #PsalmQuest 3 “Covered”

    9 Aug 2014 | 7:46 pm
      Earlier this week the Sunfonia Chorale hosted its first Summer Singing Session concert. In the middle of the program we took a break from singing and enjoyed a solo piano piece performed by Chemena Geldimyadova. She played Covered which is the third piece in my 7-year #PsalmQuest, and this was … Give me more... →
  • 24 Ways To Support Live Music!

    7 Aug 2014 | 5:34 pm
      Would you like to support performing musicians but can’t afford a large donation? Would you like to show your enthusiasm for the live music they share, but are not sure how to? Read on… 1-10 First published on, written by Praverb 11-24 First published on, written by C Bret Campbell Accessed … Give me more... →
  • #PsalmQuest 25 – The Land Of Oblivion

    4 Aug 2014 | 4:36 am
    It may seem from the title that this piece of music for trombone would be sparse, empty, haunting. Instead, it is vibrant, dance-like and full of chatter. But that’s what psalm 88 is like: It tells the story of how one individual feels so very isolated from those around him/her. … Give me more... →
  • 30 years ago today…

    13 Jul 2014 | 4:37 am
      The first time I set foot on USA soil was Friday the 13th of July, 1984, just a little more than 6 weeks after my 14th birthday. My life took a crazy wild turn upside-down, inside-out, and both left and right at the same time. I was going to spend 3 … Give me more... →
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