Classical Music

  • Most Topular Stories

  • Top 10 Warning Signs You May Be a Piano Nerd

    Grand Piano Passion™
    Nancy M. Williams, Founding Editor
    25 Aug 2014 | 2:00 am
    An adult piano student has detected an unintended consequence of her passion for piano: becoming a piano nerd. Here's a list of the top 10 warning signs. Nancy M. Williams, Founding Editor The full article Top 10 Warning Signs You May Be a Piano Nerd is on Grand Piano Passion™.
  • Women Composers Celebrated in Classical Piano Recital

    Grand Piano Passion™
    Joanna M. Eng, Contributing Editor
    14 Jul 2014 | 2:00 am
    AmateurPianists organized a recital featuring piano works by all women composers during Women's History Month. Amateur performers share what they learned. Joanna M. Eng, Contributing Editor The full article Women Composers Celebrated in Classical Piano Recital is on Grand Piano Passion™.
  • Paying Attention at a Classical Piano Performance

    Grand Piano Passion™
    Joanna M. Eng, Contributing Editor
    11 Aug 2014 | 2:00 am
    An adult piano student admits she doesn't know how to listen attentively at a classical piano concert. She embarks on an experiment with Beethoven Sonatas. Joanna M. Eng, Contributing Editor The full article Paying Attention at a Classical Piano Performance is on Grand Piano Passion™.
  • A Listening Profit from My Hearing Loss

    Grand Piano Passion™
    Nancy M. Williams, Founding Editor
    2 Sep 2014 | 9:55 am
    Nancy M. Williams looks back on how she used to hide her hearing loss, but realizes she draws strong listening skills and musicality from her hearing loss. Nancy M. Williams, Founding Editor The full article A Listening Profit from My Hearing Loss is on Grand Piano Passion™.
  • Help fund the first Heather Roche composition competition

    The Rambler
    Tim Rutherford-Johnson
    16 Sep 2014 | 2:39 am
    Clarinetist Heather Roche is crowdsourcing a brand new composition competition. Heather is one of the hardest working young players in the business, and most people involved in new music – particularly in central and northern Europe – will know her for her dedication and enthusiasm for creating new repertory, as well as her talents as a player. (If you’re a clarinetist … Continue reading →
  • add this feed to my.Alltop


  • Watch A Sweet Little Butterfly Nearly Crush A Woman's Hopes And Dreams

    Anastasia Tsioulcas
    16 Sep 2014 | 10:42 am
    But flutist Yukie Ota didn't let a little insect throw her off her game at the Carl Nielsen International Flute Competition.» E-Mail This
  • Gotta Know Mexico: A Mexican Music Puzzler

    Tom Huizenga
    16 Sep 2014 | 10:01 am
    From Pre-Colombian sounds to hip-hop, Mexico's musical heritage is eclectic. To celebrate Mexican Independence Day and National Hispanic Heritage Month, test your knowledge of Mexican music.» E-Mail This
  • Shara Worden On Q2's 'Spaces'

    Hannis Brown
    16 Sep 2014 | 7:03 am
    My Brightest Diamond's busy and enigmatic singer, songwriter, composer and multi-instrumentalist is a dizzying blur of creativity. Watch Q2 visit with Shara Worden in her Detroit home.» E-Mail This
  • Listen To The Atlanta Symphony While It's Locked Out — Again

    Tom Huizenga
    12 Sep 2014 | 12:26 pm
    In music from Giuseppe Verdi to Jennifer Higdon, celebrate the sound of the venturesome Atlanta Symphony Orchestra while it's silenced by a bitter labor dispute.» E-Mail This
  • Nonesuch At 50: A Record Label Without Borders

    Jeff Lunden
    10 Sep 2014 | 2:55 pm
    It began as a small classical label selling records at modest prices. A half-century later, it issues albums from big names in a spectrum of contemporary music from all parts of the globe.» E-Mail This
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Slipped Disc

  • Hilary Hahn: How to get more out of music

    norman lebrecht
    18 Sep 2014 | 1:13 am
    The celebrated violinist, sidelined at present by injury, has offered some tips to readers in Baltimore on how to accentuate your musical experience, whether as listener or performer. Hilary should have opened the Baltimore season but is taking longer than expected to recover from a muscle strain. Read her advice here. Sample: You don’t need to be a performer in order to dive into the sensory experience of music. Simply get as close as you can to the source of the music. Stick your head between the speakers. Sit in the front row of the balcony right above the stage.   
  • Aaron Rosand: ‘A competition is not fair when teachers face their own students’

    norman lebrecht
    18 Sep 2014 | 12:52 am
    The veteran virtuoso and teacher has commented, in a letter to Slipped Disc, on the finals of the Indianapolis contest, an outcome which has provoked widespread discomfort. We reprint his comments with permission:     A competition can not be fair when teachers have their own students involved in it. Although they can not vote for their pupils , they can easily give lower marks to more worthy candidates. This practice must be discontinued to achieve fair and unbiased results. Currently many outstanding young violinists are from Asia : that five of the six finalists chosen are Korean…
  • Maestro starts up Facebook-like network for the super-rich

    norman lebrecht
    18 Sep 2014 | 12:28 am
    It’s what you always wanted, right? Instead of having to talk to jobbing musicians who can barely afford an off-season family holiday in a caravan, you need a social network where you can communicate with people in your own income bracket. Yacht shall speak trivia to yacht, as it were. Good business model? A former conductor has just launched it. His name is James Touchi-Peters and he is described in his Wiki entry as principal conductor of the Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra (sic) from 1991 to 2001. His new site is called Netropolitan. It costs $9,000 to join and $3,000 a year to…
  • Two more names in Concertgebouw frame

    norman lebrecht
    18 Sep 2014 | 12:16 am
    In addition to the four known candidates, two further maestros have been added to the selection pack. They are both Russian – the outstanding Semyon Bychkov, who is presently free of institutional duties, and the fast-rising Vasily Petrenko, music director in Liverpool and Oslo. An announcement is expected before the end of next month.  
  • Relief! Italian consul resolves Russian instrument seizure

    norman lebrecht
    18 Sep 2014 | 12:11 am
    We reported last night that four musicians were in distress in St Petersburg, unable to take their musicians out of Russia due to customs regulations. The four are a Hungarian Ágnes Kertész and three Italians: Olivia Centurioni (pictured), Giovanni Barbati and Pasquale Lepore. Overnight, the Italian consul in St Petersburg became actively involved and the crisis is now over. The musicians are heading home. Thank you all for your help and advice. Agnes Kertesz has posted: Dear Friends! All has been resolved!Thanks to the Italian Consulate in St. Petersburg, the St. Petersburg Russian duty,…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop


  • Hey, Some Good News Without Any Prerequisite Drama

    Drew McManus
    18 Sep 2014 | 12:00 am
    The 9/15/2014 edition of The Seattle Times published an article by Nicole Brodeur that reports the Seattle Symphony Orchestra (SSO) not only raised $600,000 at its recent gala but also garnered a $10 million gift from Rebecca Bearoya. Yes, the Minnesota Orchestra recently announced a $10 million gift too but Seattle managed to snag their big gift without first having to thrust the organization into chaos. Even though the organization came rather close to an ugly labor dispute in 2013, the stakeholders managed to fend off outside pressures and keep it together long enough to sign a one year…
  • Isn’t It About Time For an Arts Admin Version of Lifehacker?

    Drew McManus
    17 Sep 2014 | 12:00 am
    Ah, where would we be without, the site dedicated to providing “tips, ticks, and downloads for getting things done.” Since 2005, the site has been a mainstay for practical advice and discussion; granted, it’s become a bit of a navigation quagmire in recent months, but the content is still entirely useful. So why doesn’t something like this exist for arts managers? Sure there are outlets like listservs maintained by the various service orgs where arts managers can share tips etc. but compared to Lifehacker they are little more than a series of myopic,…
  • Welcome Joe Goetz: Scanning The Dial’s New Primary Author

    Drew McManus
    16 Sep 2014 | 12:00 am
    After more than six years at the helm of Scanning The Dial as its primary author, Marty Ronish is moving into retirement and handing over the reins to Joe Goetz, Music Director for WFIU 103.7 FM in Bloomington, Indiana. Goetz’s inaugural post went up yesterday where he lays out an overview for what you can expect at one of the leading online hubs for all things related to classical music broadcasting. So, what should you expect, as readers, going forward? My goal is to make this blog the leading forum for both passionate listeners AND broadcasters to discuss all the issues we can that…
  • Let There Be Transparency: 14 Seasons Of ASO/WAC 990s

    Drew McManus
    15 Sep 2014 | 12:00 am
    During the Minnesota Orchestra lockout, one of Adaptistration’s most popular articles related to that topic was when I made more than a decade of the organization’s IRS returns available for download in one handy pdf file. Typically, that info is secured under digital lock and key in my consulting resource vault but I’m already witnessing a good bit of not-so-healthy arm chair analysis based on incomplete or limited data so it is time again to dig deep and offer up the goods. In this case, the financial document goodie bag contains fourteen (14) seasons worth of IRS 990s…
  • Deconstructing Some Spin From Atlanta

    Drew McManus
    12 Sep 2014 | 12:00 am
    One of the more confusing aspects related to the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (ASO) lockout is how the relationship between the ASO and the Woodruff Arts Center (WAC) impacts the organization as a whole. We’ll be diving into those issues as they relate to board governance in a future article but for today, we’ll examine the administrative piece of the puzzle. According to the ASO’s Musician Contract Negotiations FAQ page, the organization implies that it suffers under the weight of an understaffed administration. We have one of the smallest staffs of any major American…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop


  • worth reading, to say the least

    Steve Hicken
    11 Sep 2014 | 5:50 pm
    This is the first of what will likely be a very occasional series, pointing you to some stuff I thought was, well, worth reading.Alex Ross on pop culture and power. Key sentence: "Between them, Adorno and Benjamin were pioneers in thinking critically about pop culture—in taking that culture seriously as an object of scrutiny, whether in tones of delight, dismay, or passionate ambivalence."A conversation with Richard Powers. Key sentence: "You can listen to music for millions of different reasons, and if you consider the fundamental components of music—melody, harmony, rhythm, texture,…
  • happy birthday!

    Steve Hicken
    4 Jul 2014 | 8:39 am
    Some music for the day:Bonus track:
  • music for one musician

    Steve Hicken
    19 May 2014 | 4:04 pm
    The redesigned Burning Ambulance launches today. One of the new offerings is my review of Rough Fields' recording of Steve Reich's Music for 18 Musicians.
  • erik carlson, violin

    Steve Hicken
    17 May 2014 | 1:20 pm
    Review at Sequenza21.
  • douglas detrick - the bright and rushing world

    Steve Hicken
    27 Apr 2014 | 6:28 am
    Review at Sequenza21
  • add this feed to my.Alltop


  • Steve Coleman Awarded 2014 MacArthur “Genius Grant”

    NewMusicBox Staff
    17 Sep 2014 | 8:02 am
    The MacArthur Foundation noted that Coleman is a musician "whose technical virtuosity and engagement with musical traditions and styles from around the world are expanding the expressive and formal possibilities of spontaneous composition."
  • Du Yun—No Safety Net

    Frank J. Oteri
    17 Sep 2014 | 7:20 am
    Unlike composers who grew up in the United States where just about any kind of music seems part of our tradition, Shanghai-born Du Yun approaches all traditions as somehow exotic, whether classical, pop, avant-garde, or even the traditional Chinese music that deeply influences so many other Chinese émigré composers.
  • Sounds Heard: Wayne Horvitz—55: Music and Dance in Concrete

    Frank J. Oteri
    16 Sep 2014 | 9:20 am
    Wayne Horvitz's music for 55: Music and Dance in Concrete, taken out of its original site-specific multimedia context, comes across as part psychedelic soundtrack (think Barbarella), part mysterious fun house (think Sleep No More).
  • It Ain’t Us, Babe

    Robert Fink
    15 Sep 2014 | 7:52 am
    Beware of musicologists bringing hegemonic narratives to discipline the chaos of the contemporary.
  • A Peek from the Peaks of the PROs

    NewMusicBox Staff
    12 Sep 2014 | 9:32 am
    The CEOs of ASCAP, BMI, and SESAC were all together for a Texas BBQ lunch meeting organized by the Association of Independent Music Publishers (AIMP) in which each was individually asked about a variety of topics.
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Alex Ross: The Rest Is Noise

  • New arrival: Chéreau's Elektra

    Alex Ross
    17 Sep 2014 | 12:22 pm
    The Aix-en-Provence presentation of Elektra, Patrice Chéreau's final production, is now on DVD. My review is here.
  • Conversation with Laurie Anderson

    Alex Ross
    14 Sep 2014 | 9:35 am
    At the New Yorker Festival, Oct. 12.
  • Recent purchase

    Alex Ross
    12 Sep 2014 | 10:46 am
    This superb, wide-ranging volume, edited by Nona Willis Aronowitz and published by University of Minnesota Press, gives me the chance to quote again from Willis's 1969 essay on Woodstock, one of the sharpest pieces the New Yorker has ever published: "What cultural revolutionaries do not seem to grasp is that, far from being a grass-roots art form that has been taken over by businessmen, rock itself comes from the commercial exploitation of blues. It is bourgeois at its core, a mass-produced commodity, dependent on advanced technology and therefore on the money controlled by those in…
  • The problem with the Kennedy Center Honors

    Alex Ross
    10 Sep 2014 | 7:45 am
    A Cultural Comment at the New Yorker website.
  • JLA Sila

    Alex Ross
    9 Sep 2014 | 11:44 am
    Courtesy of Q2.
  • add this feed to my.Alltop


  • Music of Pauline Oliveros in Los Angeles

    Paul Muller
    15 Sep 2014 | 7:39 am
    On Tuesday, September 9, 2014 the Southland Ensemble presented a concert of the music of Pauline Oliveros at Human Resources in the arts-friendly Chinatown district of downtown Los Angeles. The performance space, with its wide open floor and lively acoustics was the perfect place given that the works of Ms. Oliveros typically include a theatrical component. The seating, arranged logically around the perimeter, was completely filled by those attending. The concert opened with Sonic Rorschach (1971) and for this groups of electric fans were arrayed in the corners to provide white noise, as…
  • Some More New on the Proms

    Rodney Lister
    14 Sep 2014 | 3:46 pm
    On August 27, the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Myung-Whun Chung, in its first appearance at the Proms, included, along with Debussy’s La Mer and the Tschaikovsky Sixth Symphony, Šu, a concerto for Sheng and orchestra by their compatriot Unsuk Chin, with soloist Wu Wei. The sound of the sheng, which is ethereal, if not down right ineffable, dominates the work. Not only does the soloist plays almost continually throughout the work, but the orchestra’s music grows out of the music of the sheng, expanding and amplifying it. Šu, whose title comes from the name of the ancient…
  • 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,…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Classical Performance Podcast

  • Markus Schirmer and A Far Cry

    WGBH Educational Foundation
    1 Sep 2014 | 10:00 pm
    Markus Schirmer and A Far Cry play Mozart in the Fraser Performance Studio *** Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 12 in A major, K.414 Markus Schirmer, piano; A Far Cry +++ Recorded at WGBH’s Fraser Performance Studio on May 20, 2009 © 2014 WGBH Educational Foundation photo of Markus Schirmer by BIG SHOT/Christian Jungwirth, courtesy of the artist
  • 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)
  • add this feed to my.Alltop


  • How Ealing Studios predicted Britain's breakaway state

    18 Sep 2014 | 1:48 am
    Here in sunny London we don't get a say in the future of our own country after today's Scottish referendum on independence, so I thought we'd relax and have a laugh while we wait for them to get their act together. Here's how the Ealing Studios predicted a breakaway state within the UK back in 1949. The score, incidentally, is by the fabulous Georges Auric.
  • No tittering at Anna Nicole

    17 Sep 2014 | 1:47 am
    Went to Anna Nicole last night at the Royal Opera House, and took with me an American friend who was seeing it for the first time. She thought Richard Thomas's libretto was brilliant, which it is, and she laughed at the jokes, of which there are many.At the start of the interval, the besuited guy in front of us turned round and told her to stop laughing.Problem: this opera is meant to be funny.The librettist would have been overjoyed to get such a positive reaction (elsewhere in the house sharp intakes of breath could be heard around some of the filthier lines). So would the composer. So…
  • Orchestra calls for more women composers

    15 Sep 2014 | 11:47 pm
    The Britten Sinfonia has issued a heartening call for more women composers to step up and enter its Opus2015 competition. Currently in its third year, the scheme offers unpublished composers the chance to win a professional commission for a new work to be played in the orchestra's At Lunch series. But now the orchestra has noted that so far only 15 per cent of the applications have come from women composers - and they'd like some more, please.Opportunities like this don't grow on trees, so all aspiring composers - both gals and guys - could do worse than get that show on the road and…
  • Discussing John Ogdon

    13 Sep 2014 | 11:38 pm
    Quick reminder for pianophile friends in the north London area that today at the Hampstead & Highgate Literary Festival I am in discussion with the author Charles Beauclerk about PIANO MAN, his excellent biography of John Ogdon. The venue is Anna Pavlova's former home, now the LJCC - Ivy House, North End Road, London NW11 - and we start at 3.30pm. We'll talk for an hour and Charles will be signing copies of the book afterwards. Do join us if you're free. Details here.And here is a reminder of what it's all about: a recital that Ogdon gave at the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatoire in…
  • Helter-Skelton!

    10 Sep 2014 | 1:02 am's my piece from today's Independent about the fab Heldentenot Stuart Skelton, who stars as Otello at ENO's opening night on Saturday. He tells me about his path to the top, the challenges of Otello and why he and ENO feel the love...
  • add this feed to my.Alltop


  • Paris's Delamain Bookstore Safe for Now

    Charles T. Downey
    17 Sep 2014 | 1:14 pm
    One of the delights of living in Paris was its booksellers, from the bouquinistes in their stalls along the Seine to the librairies in more fixed stores, especially those in the university quarter. One of the oldest and most famous of Paris's bookstores, the Librairie Delamain, is located in the Hôtel du Louvre, across the street from the Comédie Française. The rents of the neighborhood, the 1er
  • Briefly Noted: Gauvin's Mozart Arias

    Charles T. Downey
    16 Sep 2014 | 1:16 pm
    Mozart, Opera and Concert Arias, K. Gauvin, Les Violins du Roy, B. Labadie (released on March 25, 2014) Atma ACD22636 | 63 minAfter the most recent local concert by the Violons du Roy, last year at Strathmore, I was ready to declare the Québec-based group the best historically informed performance ensemble in North America. The group has a long history with Canadian soprano Karina Gauvin, who
  • Brian Ganz @ JCCGW

    Charles T. Downey
    15 Sep 2014 | 7:28 pm
    The following article is more of an appreciation than a review, since the concert in question was presented at a venue for which the author also writes program notes. The reader is thus notified of the possible conflict of interest. Chopin, Preludes, B. Ganz Any musician who makes it to the final round of a major competition has talent and training. As the saying goes, the winner of such a
  • Perchance to Stream: End of Summer Edition

    Charles T. Downey
    14 Sep 2014 | 10:52 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. Mezzo-soprano Béatrice Uria-Monzon joins the Vienna Singverein and the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, under conductor Myung-Whun Chung
  • South African 'Magic Flute' at STC

    Charles T. Downey
    13 Sep 2014 | 9:39 am
    Mhlekazi (Wha Wha) Mosiea (Tamino) and cast in The Magic Flute: Impempe Yomlingo, Isango Ensemble Mozart's timeless Singspiel The Magic Flute is a universal tale. Its libretto, in a pseudo-Egyptian setting, is imaginary enough that it can be transposed to almost any other locale, and its Masonic ideals can be applied in any culture where the human heart yearns for freedom from tyranny and men
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    The Rambler

  • Help fund the first Heather Roche composition competition

    Tim Rutherford-Johnson
    16 Sep 2014 | 2:39 am
    Clarinetist Heather Roche is crowdsourcing a brand new composition competition. Heather is one of the hardest working young players in the business, and most people involved in new music – particularly in central and northern Europe – will know her for her dedication and enthusiasm for creating new repertory, as well as her talents as a player. (If you’re a clarinetist … Continue reading →
  • Wandelweiser’s Minnesota debut

    Tim Rutherford-Johnson
    15 Sep 2014 | 2:36 am
    Word from Crow With No Mouth promotions that the Wandelweiser group will be making its Minnesota concert debut later this month. Here are the details from the event blog: our wandelweiser festival program will consist of the premiere of nine new pieces, written by nine composers integral to the wandelweiser collective, especially for our weekend. this is … Continue reading →
  • Talking at the RNCM

    Tim Rutherford-Johnson
    12 Sep 2014 | 1:46 am
    On 1st October I’m going to be presenting as part of the RNCM’s Research Forum series. Mine is the first of this year’s series, and I’m going in big with an attempt to untangle the mess that it is contemporary music history.  If you’re in or around Manchester and fancy a sneak preview of the book, … Continue reading →
  • We Break Strings Kickstarter campaign

    Tim Rutherford-Johnson
    6 Sep 2014 | 2:06 am
    Earlier in the summer I was approached by the writer Thom Andrewes to be one of a number of interviewees for a new book on London’s alternative classical music scene, to be published to mark the 10th anniversary of Nonclassical. It was fun to do, and the book, called We Break Strings, includes some terrific photos by Dimitri … Continue reading →
  • Włodzimierz Kotoński, 1925–2014

    Tim Rutherford-Johnson
    5 Sep 2014 | 1:11 am
    Sad news from Adrian Thomas that the Polish composer Włodzimierz Kotoński has died, aged 89. Along with Jan Krenz (b.1926) and Bogusław Schaeffer (b.1929), Kotoński was the last major surviving Polish composer born before 1930.  He was renowned as a composition teacher at the Music Academy in Warsaw and his roster of pupils reads like … Continue reading →
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Opera Today

  • Elīna Garanča: Meditation
    17 Sep 2014 | 1:40 pm
  • Xerxes, ENO
    17 Sep 2014 | 8:32 am
    Nicholas Hytner’s production of Handel’s Xerxes (Serse) at English National Opera (ENO) is nearly 30 years old, and is the oldest production in ENO’s stable.
  • San Diego Opera Opens 2014-2015 Season
    15 Sep 2014 | 1:45 pm
    On Friday evening September 5, 2014, tenor Stephen Costello and soprano Ailyn Pérez gave a recital to open the San Diego Opera season. After all the threats to close the company down, it was a great joy to great San Diego Opera in its new vibrant, if slightly slimmed down form.
  • Otello at ENO
    15 Sep 2014 | 11:57 am
    English National Opera’s 2014-15 season kicked off with an ear-piercing orchestral thunderbolt. Brilliant lightning spears sliced through the thick black night, fitfully illuminating the Mediterranean garret-town square where an expectant crowd gather to welcome home their conquering hero.
  • Anna Nicole, back with a bang!
    14 Sep 2014 | 1:14 pm
    It is now three and a half years since Anna Nicole was unleashed on the world at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Opera Today News Headlines

  • Elīna Garanča: Meditation

    17 Sep 2014 | 1:40 pm
  • Great Expectations: A New Season Of New Music

    7 Sep 2014 | 8:08 pm
    By Tom Huizenga [NPR Music] Musicologist and pianist Charles Rosen once quipped: "The death of classical music is perhaps its oldest continuing tradition." But it's tough to see much gloom when faced with the diversity of premieres and provocative programming around the country in the 2014-2015 season. [More . . . .]
  • Theatre of war: new-found patriotism meets old-school propaganda in a Russian opera about Crimea

    3 Sep 2014 | 9:40 am
    By Amelia Glaser [2 September 2014, The Calvert Journal] This year, Russia has revelled in grand demonstrations. If Sochi’s opening ceremony is now a distant memory, the annexation of Crimea has offered a theme for mass spectacle to rival those of the Soviet Union. The Night Wolves motorcycle club (Russia’s Hells Angels) recently hosted their annual bike show in Sevastopol in Crimea, dedicated to the defenders of the fatherland from 1941 to 2014. Poems celebrating Russia’s historical struggle for Crimea were interspersed with black-clad “fascists” dancing to…
  • The Classical Cloud

    3 Sep 2014 | 9:02 am
    By Alex Ross [8 September 2014, The New Yorker] Recently, while moving my CD collection to new shelving, I struggled with feelings of obsolescence and futility. Why bother with space-devouring, planet-harming plastic objects when so much music can be had at the touch of a trackpad—on Spotify, Pandora, Beats Music, and other streaming services that rain sonic data from the virtual entity known as the Cloud? [More . . . .]
  • Operalia 2014 winners include Mario Chang, Rachel Willis-Sørensen

    31 Aug 2014 | 2:49 pm
    By David Ng [31 August 2014, LA Times] The winners of the 2014 Operalia competition were announced Saturday evening at the conclusion of the finals competition held at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. Tenor Mario Chang from Guatemala and soprano Rachel Willis-Sørensen of the U.S. took home the two first-place prizes. [More . . . .]
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    aworks :: "new" american classical music

  • Variations on the Orange Cycle (1991). Elodie Lauten #links

    13 Sep 2014 | 8:47 am
    The piece is modeled on the 24 hours of a day with its phases of activity, leisure, transport and rest. It was included in Chamber Music America's "Century List" (although I can't find the actual list online). Elodie Lauten Robert Carl found the work New Age-ish but did say this: "The impressive trick of the piece is that every one of its four movements is based on some form of a low G pedal point, which either sounds as a drone or rhythmic ostinato." Fanfare The work takes advantage of the percussive aspect of the piano and the "single tone" grounds the piece conceptually and emotionally.
  • aworks album log :: september 9, 2014

    9 Sep 2014 | 9:55 pm
    American classical: Musicians' Accord, Colorado String Quartet - Henry Cowell: Mosaic 26 Simultaneous Mosaics sounds like you might expect. I wasn't aware that the Mode label was streaming on rdio. [Mode] Beyond: Giuseppe Ielase - August [12k] Links: Music audio files may be dead but high-definition streaming is impressive. Lefsetz Letter
  • aworks album log :: september 7, 2014

    7 Sep 2014 | 7:25 pm
    American classical Sabine Liebner - Morton Feldman: Triadic Memories 2+ hours. Long duration music is good but I probably need more of an explicit, consistent pulse. The 56 minute conclusion is more intense than the 77 minute beginning, if only briefly.  [Oehms Classics] Beyond The Muhal Richard Abrams Orchestra - The Hearinga Suite A 1989 recording. [Black Saint] Links An app to be released that will allow virtual performances of Terry Riley's In C. Concertgebouw rdio throws a bunch of streaming approaches to what used to be a clean, well-designed UI for music discovery.
  • aworks album log :: september 6, 2014 @DuanePitreMusic #lakorosutro #drone

    6 Sep 2014 | 1:52 pm
    American classical: Duane Pitre - Organized Pitches Occurring in Time[Important Records] The Ensemble Chord In C With A Major 7th And A Guitar Base is probably my favorite work, of all the music I listen to. Gil Rose, Boston Modern Orchestra Project - Lou Harrison: La Koro Sutro The Suite for Violin with American Gamelan is a calm, appealing work. I'm still not sure about La Koro Sutro, although I see it was also just played on Music from Other Minds.[BMOP/Sound] Duane Pitre - Feel Free[Root Strata] Duane Pitre - Origin [Root Strata] Duane Pitre - Bridges [Important Records] Bruce…
  • aworks album log :: september 1, 2014

    1 Sep 2014 | 7:09 pm
    American classical: Bang on a Can All-Stars - Julia Wolfe: Steel Hammer The first track has vocal music and what sounds like a hammer banging on a pipe.[Cantaloupe] Beyond: Peter Brötzmann / Sonny Sharrock - Whatthefuckdoyouwant Sharrock was an excellent free jazz guitarist; not sure what to make of Brötzmann on saxophone. The album is as abrasive as the title might suggest, but after warming up to it, I like it. [Trost Records] MGMT - Oracular Spectacular 51 of the 316 people I follow on rdio have listened to this. Strangely enough, this was also playing tonight at Oren's Hummus Shop in…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    The Collaborative Piano Blog

  • Help the Collaborative Pianist Guild Become a Professional Advocacy Group for our Profession

    Chris Foley
    11 Sep 2014 | 3:45 am
    Although collaborative pianists are known for their ability to work with others, as a group they can often be marginalized and sometimes have difficulty identifying with a professional organization.The Collaborative Pianist Guild aims to change all that. Starting off as an accompanist directory, they eventually plan to become a full-fledged advocacy group for the entire profession. With that purpose in mind, CPG President Susan Brown and VP Rachel Fogarty have created a Rockethub campaign in a bid to raise $5,000. Here's the statement from their Rockethub page:The Collaborative Pianist Guild…
  • 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…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    parterre box

  • Tristissimus Thursday

    17 Sep 2014 | 9:05 pm
    On this day in 14 AD, Tiberius was confirmed as Roman Emperor by the Roman Senate, following the death of Augustus. Born on this day in 1852 poet and librettist Francis Burdett Money-Coutts Born on this day in 1860 composer Alberto Franchetti Born on this day in 1893 composer Arthur Benjamin (none of his operas excerpted on You Tube) Born on this day in 1897 composer Pablo Sorozábal Born on this day in 1910 composer Josef…
  • Divina, deconstructed

    La Cieca
    17 Sep 2014 | 3:39 pm
    “The sensation is that you are actually right there in the studio with Callas herself. In comparison to earlier masters of this material, she sounds less abstractly ‘divine’ and more approachably human.” Our Own JJ reviews the massive collection Maria Callas Remastered: The Complete Studio Recordings (1949-1969) for his regular column in the New York Observer.
  • We live on the wind and in the sparkle of a star!

    16 Sep 2014 | 9:05 pm
    On this day in 1964, the sitcom Bewitched premiered on ABC television. Born on this day in 1711 composer Ignaz Holzbauer Born on this day in 1878 composer Vincenzo Tommasini Born on this day in 1880 conductor and composer Désiré-Émile Inghelbrecht Born on this day in 1904 choreographer Frederick Ashton Born on this day in 1913 glass harmonica player Bruno Hoffman Happy 91st…
  • It’s a good career

    La Cieca
    16 Sep 2014 | 4:57 pm
    Music Director James Levine (pictured, right) is obviously feeling well enough that he can get back to favorite pastime, i.e., making sure nobody else has a success except him. Writes director Richard Eyre in his blog on the Met’s website: The orchestra will be added on Monday and when that happens I will have to adjust some staging for musical reasons. Balance is all. And here we have a problem: in order to bring the action as far downstage as possible we have sited the prompter’s box in the orchestra pit. Jimmy Levine now feels that this will severely affect the balance of the…
  • The dark side of the moon

    Poison Ivy
    16 Sep 2014 | 8:50 am
    One of my favorite terms to use to describe productions nowadays is “regie lite.” Regie lite productions dominate Glyndebourne, Salzburg, and increasingly, the Metropolitan Opera. Traditional stage directions are tweaked, periods are reset, but not in a way that radically deconstructs the work. If hardcore “regie” directors do a Michael Jackson total-deconstruction makeover on the opera, regie lite productions do a, well, Nancy Pelosi botox session. After viewing a new DVD of Stefan Herheim’s production of Rusalka, I’ve got a new category: “regie slick.” Herheim’s…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    The Wagnerian

  • The Wagner bio film: Magic Fire

    5 Sep 2014 | 12:14 pm
    There have been a few, often greatly fictionalised, films claiming to present Wagner's life. One oft less mentioned is Republic Pictures not un-entertaining 1955 "Magic Fire" Sadly, a box office failure, from a studio that closed down only a few years later, it has proven nearly impossible to see - especially as far as we are aware any video release has been long deleted. However, due to that wondrous treasure trove known as youtube, it has now reappeared. One assumes, like a few of Republic films from this time, it is in the public domain? Anyway, till some bright spark releases it on DVD…
  • " Ride of The Valkyries" As Performed By Midi Synthesia

    5 Sep 2014 | 12:10 pm
    Was Sir Clive Sinclair A Wagner Fan?Those of you, yes we know there are one or two, who "wasted" their youth on a Game Boy - or if you are really old like our editor, on a ZX81 -  may find this both interesting and perhaps responsible for conjuring up memories of already mentioned miss-spent youth.
  • Listen Now & On-Demand: SFO - The Dutchman

    5 Sep 2014 | 10:42 am
    The WFMT Radio Network continues their 2014 American Opera Series with San Francisco Opera – eight operas from their past season and two operas from the San Francisco Opera archives. This week they present The Flying Dutchman..You will have to create a free account to listen to the whole performance - on-demand until the 12 September. However, we have tested it out and its quick and easy - you can, should you wish, opt-out of email updates Click Here To Listen.Conductor: Patrick Summers Cast: Senta - Lise Lindstrom Mary - Erin Johnson Erik - Ian Storey The Steersman -…
  • Nike Wagner, Richard Wagner and Beethoven

    5 Sep 2014 | 10:09 am
    On September 7 at 7:00 pm (CET), DW presents a live stream of the opening concert at this year'sBeethovenfest. Andris Nelsons conducts the Birmingham Symphony Orchestra in a performance of Beethoven's Symphonies 1-3. Go to to watch the live stream.DW: The Beethovenfest is about to begin with a program that was put together by your predecessor. Everyone has been wondering whether we will get a sense of Nike Wagner in the program?Nike Wagner: The program was fully planned and contractually binding. But I did want to leave a few small marks of my own, for instance by adding a…
  • 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…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Naxos AudioBooks New Releases

  • HEYER, G.: Corinthian (The) (Unabridged) (NA0181)

    31 Aug 2014 | 5:00 pm
    The accomplished Corinthian Sir Richard Wyndham is wealthy, sophisticated, handsome and supremely bored. Tired of his aristocratic family constantly pressuring him to get married, he determines to run away after meeting the delightful, unconventional heroine Penelope Creed. Penelope, literally, falls into his life late one night as she hangs from the window of her aunt’s house—she too attempting to escape the pressures of forced marriage. The two allies become embroiled in a series of hilarious madcap adventures as they cross-dress, run into escaped criminals and save people from…
  • CONRAD, J.: Secret Agent (The) (Unabridged) (NA0187)

    31 Aug 2014 | 5:00 pm
    Joseph Conrad’s The Secret Agent is a tale of anarchism, espionage and terrorism. Our agent, a man named Mr Verloc, minds his own business while he keeps his shop in London’s Soho, alongside his wife, who attends to her aged mother and disabled brother. Their lives are turned upside down when Verloc is reluctantly employed to plant a bomb and destroy an observatory in London. What was once the perfect bomb plot inevitably turns awry and Verloc, his family and his associates are forced to face the consequences. Conrad’s later political novel bears all the hallmarks of his…
  • 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…
  • 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?
  • TROLLOPE, A.: Dr. Thorne (Unabridged) (NA0158)

    31 Jul 2014 | 5:00 pm
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Kenneth Woods- conductor

  • Explore the Score- Shostakovich (arr. Barshai): Chamber Symphony, opus 110a

    Kenneth Woods
    9 Sep 2014 | 8:29 am
    Ken will be conducting this work with the musicians of the English String Orchestra on Saturday, the 13th of September, 2014 in Christ Church, Malvern. The ESO will be repeating this work on their concert at Elgar Concert Hall in May 2015, and will be recording the complete Shostakovich Chamber Symphonies for Avie Records for release in 2016.   Dmitri Shostakovich’s Chamber Symphony opus 110a, an arrangement for string orchestra of his String Quartet no. 8 in C minor, opus 110, was the first of five orchestral transcriptions of his string quartets by his friend, the violist and…
  • Slatkin at 70- Happy Birthday, Leonard

    Kenneth Woods
    31 Aug 2014 | 9:09 pm
    I’m sorry- there’s simply no way that Leonard Slatkin is 70 years old. Shhh…. don’t tell them I’m not still 45. For many, many American conductors and orchestral musicians of my generation, Leonard was the first superstar conductor who seemed of our time and of our culture. Before Leonard, conductors were mostly mute, brooding, enigmatic figures with accents and capes. Even that other famous Leonard seemed more a product of an already distant golden age.  I first encountered Leonard Slatkin via the Saint Louis Symphony’s syndicated weekly radio broadcasts. In…
  • 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)…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Iron Tongue of Midnight

  • Compare & Contrast 27: ENO Otello

    14 Sep 2014 | 8:31 pm
    Reviews are coming in for the ENO Otello, and about all that is clear so far is that the direction left something to be desired. Apply your knowledge of the various reviewers to calibrate what they are saying, and bear in mind that this was a role debut for Stuart Skelton in one of the most difficult tenor roles.Update: The first three reviews listed below are the least positive; some reviewers love the direction and production and are more impressed with the singing all around.Keith McDonnell in What's On Stage. Down on director David Alden; feels Stuart Skelton has the voice for Otello…
  • Opera Parallele 2014-15 Season

    14 Sep 2014 | 6:05 pm
    Another two-opera season for Opera Parallele, with some notable casting, plus a benefit cabaret:Cabaret with soprano Sheri GreenawaldWhen: October 2, 2014 6:00 p.m.Where: Marines’ Memorial Club609 Sutter Street, San FranciscoTables of 10: $2500 and $5000Individual Tickets $250For table reservations and sponsorship opportunities:Contact: Executive Director Tod Brody at 415-626-6279Dead Man Walking, by Jake HeggieCast: Jennifer Rivera (Sister Helen Prejean), Michael Mayes (Joe DeRocher), Catherine Cook (Mrs. DeRocher), Talise Trevigne (Sister Rose), Robert Orth (Owen Hart) plus…
  • Kronos Quartet Program, Bing Hall, October 5, 2014

    14 Sep 2014 | 5:53 pm
    Not too likely I can get to this, but what a program:What:                         Kronos QuartetWhen:                        Sunday, October 5, 7:00 p.m.Program:                   Missy Mazzoli: Harp and…
  • Additional Cast Changes, SF Opera Norma

    12 Sep 2014 | 8:22 pm
    You might have expected this one: Jamie Barton will sing Adalgisa in all performances of the opera.You probably didn't expect this one: tenor Marco Berti has withdrawn from the production "for personal reasons." He will be replaced as Pollione by American tenor Russell Thomas, who makes his Sf Opera debut and role debut.
  • San Francisco Opera and Musicians' Union Ratify Four-Year Contract

    11 Sep 2014 | 5:35 pm
    I'm going to put the press release in full below the cut, but the highlights are:Contract runs through July 31, 2018Musicians get 3% increase per year, 28 weeks, 69 musicians (I take that to mean full-time employees; an expanded orchestra may be necessary for some works, for example, Elektra)Changes were made to the health plan that will save the company $300,000 to $400,000 annuallyThe pit lighting and sound shields will be improved.They've worked out something, but don't go into any details, to cover performances at the 299-seat theater being built in the Veterans Building.The orchestra…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Musical Assumptions

  • The Accidental Archivist: a Ramble

    17 Sep 2014 | 8:05 am
    By first week of August it became clear to me that I would no longer be teaching music appreciation at Lake Land College. The single course that I had left did not have enough students to warrant the meagre salary that I made as an adjunct. I could see that this lack of interest in music appreciation was not going to turn around, so I took the plunge and purged my file cabinet of music appreciation course notes. I thought it would be nice to use the space for something useful.On August 9th I got the call about my brother's accident, and on the 10th Michael and I found ourselves in Horse Cave…
  • Orange Crate Art is Ten Years Old!

    15 Sep 2014 | 3:30 am
    Happy 10th Birthday, Orange Crate Art!Michael's wonderfully entertaining and often informative blog began ten years ago today.
  • The WTC and Me: My First Journey Through Both Books

    13 Sep 2014 | 6:09 pm
    Sometime during my childhood my father bought a Henle Edition of both books of Bach's Well Tempered Clavier. I imagine he bought it in England because its price was indicated in pounds, and I believe it was used because there is handwriting in it that doesn't look like it belongs to anyone in our family.My younger brother Richard studied piano all through his childhood, and these books were always on the piano. My older brother Marshall claimed one of the fugues as his "own" (the E minor in the second book), so I picked the D minor Fugue from the second book as "mine." I plunked it out as…
  • Sid Caesar "plays" the Grieg Piano Concerto

    10 Sep 2014 | 11:59 am
    Part of the charm of this is the way Caesar responds to the musical shenanigans of Earl Wild, the pianist who is actually doing the playing, and the audience's response.
  • How to be a Successful Chamber Musician in the 21st Century

    5 Sep 2014 | 4:56 pm
    From a chamber music coaching session given by a very prominent (and very successful) 21st-century musician:“Anything that sounds like melody, make it rhythmic; anything that sounds like harmony, make it rhythmic . . . anything that sounds rhythmic, make it melodic. Contradict all the traditional roles that any one of you may have.” That just about sums it up.
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    eighth blackbird » Blog

  • World Premiere of John Luther Adams’ SILA: The Breath of the World

    michael joyce
    15 Sep 2014 | 10:59 am
    Pulitzer Prize winning composer John Luther Adams has released the video to his latest performance, called Sila: The Breath of the World. On July 25th 2014, a crowd of over two thousand people gathered in Lincoln Center’s Hearst Plaza to watch the pulitzer prize winners latest performance, which included eighty musicians mostly from the New York area.   Drawing heavily on nature for inspiration, John explains the title of his latest piece: “In Inuit tradition the spirit that animates all things is Sila, the breath of the world. Sila is the wind and the weather … Sila…
  • 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…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    an unamplified voice

  • "Finally! Now people working in high paying jobs can score these tickets!"

    12 Sep 2014 | 7:25 pm
    What a friend (in a high paying job) said upon seeing this story on the death of the rush ticket line. (Replacement: more lotteries.)There has, in fact, been an issue over the last few years with some professional line-sitters abusing the system for profit. But this seems rather ill-judged even if it does kill that business.
  • The forgiveness story Gotham needs

    2 May 2014 | 4:57 pm
    Arabella - Metropolitan Opera, 4/3, 4/11, 4/19 & 4/24/2014Byström/Wall, Banse, Volle, Luna, Saccà/Sorensen / AuguinThis final Richard Strauss/Hugo von Hofmannsthal collaboration is, disconcertingly for the foolish or first-time listener, a piece of two halves. The first act is thoroughly Hofmannsthal: germinated from his prewar story "Lucidor" -- in which the characters now called Matteo and Zdenka were the leads and Arabella herself a cutout -- it draws his characteristic passive/reflective heroine at a point of crucial suspension and ambivalence from/with a rather more "vulgar and…
  • The wound

    25 Apr 2014 | 6:42 pm
    I Puritani - Metropolitan Opera, 4/18/2014Peretyatko, Brownlee, Aniskin, Pertusi / MariottiWhen one sees Bellini's final opera, it's hard not to draw comparisons with 1835's better-known mad scene masterpiece, Donizetti's Lucia di Lammermoor. British civil strife, lovers from opposite sides, political machination, an interrupted wedding resulting in madness, etc. But where Donizetti and his librettist Cammarano (later librettist for a number of Verdi operas including Trovatore) perfectly and tautly draw the forces of im- and interpersonal necessity that crush Lucia, Bellini's attempt to drag…
  • Two-word Arabella review while I write the longer one

    11 Apr 2014 | 1:51 pm
    See it.
  • Soldier and servant

    8 Apr 2014 | 4:00 am
    Wozzeck - Metropolitan Opera, 3/17/2014Hampson, Voigt, O'Neill, Hoare, Bayley / LevineWhile writing my account of Matthias Goerne's first and only Met Wozzeck, I did wonder several times whether the novel perspective I was crediting to his particular interpretation was not perhaps something that had been present in the other Wozzecks I'd seen, just in a form that I'd had no eye for then. Seeing Thomas Hampson sing the part soon after, however, cured that nagging doubt. For here was that familiar downtrodden Wozzeck again in life, and with him the terrible airless version of the tale familiar…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    On An Overgrown Path

  • Ravi Shankar's embryonic opera is surprise success

    18 Sep 2014 | 2:54 am
    Our tradition teaches us that sound is God- Nada Brahma. That is, musical sound and the musical experience are steps to the realisation of the self. We view music as a kind of spiritual discipline that raises one’s inner being to divine peacefulness and bliss.An auspicious coincidence meant that after writing about the teaching of Nada Brahma a few days ago, I heard Ravi Shankar speaking those words yesterday evening in an archive film. The footage was part of David Murphy's introduction to excerpts from Ravi Shankar's unfinished opera Sukanya. David Murphy was a pupil of Leon Barzin,…
  • Spare us Lebrecht's Scottish fantasia

    17 Sep 2014 | 6:19 am
    John Purser's book seen above tells the story of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra (BBCSSO) from 1935 to 1987, and covers in detail the attempt in 1980 by the BBC's London management to disband the orchestra. The story of how that decision was overturned following a strike by all the BBC orchestras and support from leading musicians including Colin Davis, Pierre Boulez and Carlo Maria Giulini has been told here before. Over the years I have also recounted how, when I lived in Scotland during the 1980s, the BBCSSO played its heart out for its Stirling audiences at the Macrobert Arts Centre.
  • Not much clickbait in this post

    17 Sep 2014 | 1:55 am
    A footnote in the newly published Resonances of the Raj: India in the English Musical Imagination,1897-1947 refers to my anecdote about Alex Ross broadcasting Kaikhosru Sorabji's monumental Opus Clavicembalisticum on Harvard's student radio station WHRB shortly after the composer's death in 1988. The anecdote appeared in a post titled Talk about immortal masterpieces is rather ridiculous, and the book's author Nalini Ghuman deserve praise for shunning immortal masterpieces and, instead, devoting a scholarly but readable volume to dispelling the myth that Indian music was 'discovered' in the…
  • Assume all technology 'guilty until proven innocent'

    15 Sep 2014 | 2:04 am
    The photo above generated quite a bit of interest when it first appeared here a couple of months age. It was taken at 15,000 feet on one of the highest roads in the world and shows the Tibetan Buddhist monk Kenrap-la listening to Jonathan Harvey's Body Mandala. When I took the photo we were approaching Kenrap-la's monastery at Thiksay at the end of the 800 km drive across the Himalayas from the Gangetic Plain of northern India to Ladakh on the border of Tibet. Body Mandala was playing on my iPod Classic, and it had been ripped from an NMC CD bought in independent retail store Prelude Records.
  • Nada Brahma - Sound is God

    12 Sep 2014 | 1:58 am
    It may be my age, but those moments when a piece of music really hits me in the solar plexus seem to get rarer and rarer. But during my recent extended travels in India I was metaphorically punched time and time again when listening to ECM's Codona recordings on headphones. Recent posts have touched on the potential of virtual concert halls and the fact that no one mixes for speakers these days , and the Manfred Eicher produced Codona sessions from between 1978 and 1982 really demonstrate the impact of the up close and personal sound of headphones. The line up for Codona was African-American…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Jason Heath's Double Bass Blog

  • Music as a Language: Victor Wooten at TEDxGabriolaIsland – YouTube

    Jason Heath
    15 Sep 2014 | 8:13 pm
    Music as a Language: Victor Wooten at TEDxGabriolaIsland – YouTube.
  • All About That [Upright] Bass

    Jason Heath
    10 Sep 2014 | 10:39 pm
    All About That [Upright] Bass – Jazz Meghan Trainor Cover ft. Kate Davis – Postmodern Jukebox – YouTube.
  • Alexander Hanna Interview – YouTube

    Jason Heath
    1 Sep 2014 | 8:48 pm
    Alexander Hanna Interview – YouTube.
  • Everything you need to know about tennis elbow for the bass

    Jason Heath
    7 Jul 2014 | 6:50 pm
    The International Society of Bassists (@ISB_World) recently put out a post featuring Randy Kurtz talking about tennis elbow for bassists.  This is something that affects a great number of bassists, and this video is well worth a viewing for a better understanding of the condition. Video Link
  • Bassist Matt Heller named as one of Alberta’s 50 Most Influential People

    Jason Heath
    2 Jul 2014 | 1:16 pm
    It makes me incredibly happy to see double bassist Matt Heller named as one of Alberta’s 50 most influential people!  Matt and I go way back–we did the American Russian Youth Orchestra ad Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival together in the late nineties, and we have kept in touch during his time in Chicago and now Canada as a bassist in the Calgary Philharmonic. Matt is an active writer and has served as president of the Organization of Canadian Symphony Musicians.  He also appeared on a Contrabass Conversations episode several years ago.  He’s a great guy and is a great…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Marco Polo New Releases

  • GODOWSKY, L.: Piano Music, Vol. 12 (Scherbakov) - 6 Waltz Poems for the Left Hand Alone / Transcriptions (8.225364)

    31 Aug 2014 | 5:00 pm
    Leopold Godowsky’s stature as one of the world’s great piano virtuosi was maintained until a stroke ended his performing life in 1930. But, allied to his prodigious gifts as a performer, he also published a series of original compositions and transcriptions for the piano. In this twelfth volume of Konstantin Scherbakov’s critically acclaimed series, the focus falls on the delectable Six Waltz-Poems for the left hand and on an ingeniously crafted series of song transcriptions of well-known music by Schumann, Brahms, Schubert and also Carl Bohm. Godowsky additionally pays…
  • SPOHR, L.: String Quartets (Complete), Vol. 17 - Nos. 10 and 18 (Moscow Philharmonic Concertino String Quartet) (8.225352)

    30 Jun 2014 | 5:00 pm
    The composition of string quartets ran as a continuous thread throughout Louis Spohr’s life, and he used the Quartet No. 10 in A major as his ‘parade horse’, playing it frequently in the Viennese salons to show off his skills both as a violinist and composer to audiences accustomed to Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven. Its first violin part matches the bravura display of the Quatuor brillant No. 3, written as Spohr planned to resume life as a touring virtuoso after resigning from his post in charge of the Frankfurt Opera. The Variations, Op. 6 see the soloist covering a wide range…
  • SPOHR, L.: String Quartets (Complete), Vol. 16 - Nos. 23 and 26 (Moscow Philharmonic Concertino String Quartet) (8.225983)

    30 Apr 2014 | 5:00 pm
    For Louis Spohr, virtuoso violinist and composer, the string quartet ran like a thread throughout his life. Strongly influenced by both the Viennese classics and the French violin school, he wrote a series of works that incorporated both of these models as he became one of the most important and esteemed composers of the first part of the nineteenth century. Both of the quartets on this recording reflect these different elements of his music, from the elegant refinement and impressive lyricism of the Quartet No. 23 to the thrilling panache of the technically demanding Quartet No. 26. This is…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Naxos New Releases

  • TCHAIKOVSKY, B.: Piano Quintet / The War Suite (Solovieva, Anisimov, Petcu-Colan, Vanbrugh Quartet) (8.573207)

    31 Aug 2014 | 5:00 pm
    Boris Tchaikovsky is revered in Russian musical circles as one of the most original and innovative composers of the post-Shostakovich generation. A work of great depth and beauty, the Piano Quintet is considered his finest chamber work and a stylistic milestone which would influence aspects of the later Piano Concerto (8.557727). Based on a the score for the 1964 film While the Front is in Defence, The War Suite is an evocative portrayal of the horrors of battle, but also of heroism, friendship and lost love, at the Volkhov Front, south east of Leningrad, during the winter of 1942.
  • GLIÈRE, R.: Symphony No. 3, `Il'ya Muromets` (Buffalo Philharmonic, Falletta) (Blu-Ray Audio) (NBD0041)

    31 Aug 2014 | 5:00 pm
    “The Glière Symphony No. 3 has always been a piece that shimmered on my horizon—a cult piece, in a way, renowned as the composer’s towering masterpiece but rarely played in concert. As long as a Mahler symphony and enormous in its instrumental requirements, it was a work that people spoke about reverently but almost never heard live. The recording was an adventure that changed our orchestra, strengthened us, and became an artistic benchmark for our musicians. We revelled in the gorgeous landscape of the Symphony—from mysterious bass murmurings to crushing walls…
  • POULENC, F.: Ballet Suites for Piano - Les animaux modeles / Les Biches / Aubade (Armengaud) (8.573170)

    31 Aug 2014 | 5:00 pm
    This programme brings together première recordings of Francis Poulenc’s own piano versions of his ‘ballet of atmosphere’ Les Biches and ‘choreographic concerto’ Aubade, as well as the first digital recording of the suite from Les Animaux modèles, inspired by the fables of La Fontaine and compiled by Grant Johannesen with the composer’s agreement. ‘Piano scores’ are an essential part of rehearsing and choreographing any ballet, but the piano was also indispensable to Poulenc’s compositional process. He owed his love of…
  • Guitar Recital: Kulikova, Irina - VASSILIEV, K. / RUDNEV, S. / KOZLOV, V. (Reminiscences of Russia) (8.573308)

    31 Aug 2014 | 5:00 pm
    Multiple award-winning guitarist Irina Kulikova celebrates her 25th anniversary as a performer with this recording of works by contemporary Russian composer-guitarists. Winner of the Michele Pittaluga, Guitarra Alhambra, Iserlohn and Forum Gitarre Wien competitions, she has selected a programme that reflects the abiding strength of the folkloric vein in Russian musical life. Rich and expressive poetry is the hallmark of the music of Konstantin Vassiliev, not least in his homages to other composers in Three Lyric Pieces, while Sergey Rudnev and Viktor Kozlov explore vibrant dance patterns and…
  • MILHAUD, D.: Orestie d'Eschyle (L') (L. Phillips, Dempson, Outlaw, Delphis, University of Michigan Choirs and Symphony Orchestra, K. Kiesler) (8.660349-51)

    31 Aug 2014 | 5:00 pm
    Part of the great French musical tradition and a member of Les Six, Darius Milhaud was an important avant-garde figure in early 20th-century Paris. The Oresteia of Aeschylus trilogy arose from his lifelong interest in Greek mythology and drama, inspired by the expressive, syncopated rhythms of Paul Claudel’s poetic texts. In addition to innovative rhythmic elements, the trilogy exhibits complex harmonic techniques, particularly polytonality, which Milhaud believed gave him more varied ways of expressing sweetness in addition to violence.
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    The Naxos Blog

  • Vocal clout

    11 Sep 2014 | 9:00 am
    Tomorrow, 13 September, is the occasion of the famous Last Night of the BBC Promenade Concerts, renowned for the fervour of its patriotic singing by some 6,000 voices in the audience and, no doubt, millions more joining in from home. Last year’s occasion was also noted for the relatively small voice of the conductor who took to the rostrum for the event, yet made an equally big impact: Naxos artist Marin Alsop was the first female director in the festival’s 188-year history to take the spotlight and lead the Prommers in their enthusiastic singing. The power of massed voices has…
  • Podcast: The romantic Bartók

    4 Sep 2014 | 9:00 am
    A new release this month from JoAnn Falletta and the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra presents a lesser known side to the Hungarian nationalist composer Béla Bartók. Serving as his passport to the vast new world of orchestral music prevailing at the beginning of the 20th century, all the works on the disc reveal a young composer on the threshold of greatness. The romantic spirit is felt both in the inspiration Bartók took from Richard Strauss‘ ground-breaking tone poems, and in the real-life romantic ups and downs the composer was experiencing at the time. Peter Hall discusses here…
  • Craftsman’s art and music’s measure

    28 Aug 2014 | 9:00 am
    Most music is referred to as ‘absolute music’. It simply comprises notes that combine to weave melodic charm. Most Haydn symphonies serve as an example. At the other end of the composing spectrum lie artefacts – physical objects other than conventional instruments – that are used solely for the compositional process. Here, the craftsman’s art becomes the starting and finishing point for realising the composer’s measured creation – one which you certainly won’t find yourself singing in the shower. Everyday objects such as rubber bands, champagne corks and…
  • 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
  • add this feed to my.Alltop


  • 5 questions to Nick Hallett (singer, composer, multi-arts producer)

    Arlene & Larry Dunn
    17 Sep 2014 | 4:00 am
    Composer, vocalist, and curator-producer Nick Hallett presents a concert of his songs later this month at Joe’s Pub, curiously titled Hallettiade, in the vein of Schubert’s legendary salons. We talked with him about the community he is creating for this evening, along with other highlights of his fall season.  Your multifaceted artistic practice begins with [...] Visit I CARE IF YOU LISTEN's Blog to read more!
  • This week: concerts in New York (September 15 – September 21, 2014)

    Sam Reising
    15 Sep 2014 | 4:00 am
    Heart & Breath A 21st-century fantasia on 17th-century Italian music and theater, Heart & Breath combines modern arrangements of music by Gesualdo and Monteverdi with contemporary works that blend music, dance, and theater, including composer Amy Beth Kirsten’s Colombine’s Paradise Theatre. Thursday, September 18 at 8:00 PM Tickets $25-$40 Miller Theatre, 2960 Broadway, New York, [...] Visit I CARE IF YOU LISTEN's Blog to read more!
  • Transparent Mechanical: Lewis and West Side Chamber Orchestra Perform Glass, Rutter, and Françaix

    Thomas Dempster
    10 Sep 2014 | 4:00 am
    Sure, it’s sort of a bromide, but it’s apt: what was once old is new again. Along with a resurgence in recent years for composing for period instruments, the harpsichord as acted as an unlikely phoenix during the 20th and 21st Centuries. Having fallen into disuse from the Classical period until the Interwar period, the harpsichord continues [...] Visit I CARE IF YOU LISTEN's Blog to read more!
  • This week: concerts in New York (September 8 – September 14, 2014)

    Sam Reising
    8 Sep 2014 | 4:00 am
    The Philip Glass Ensemble & Steve Reich and Musicians For the first time in over 30 years, Philip Glass and Steve Reich reunite, joining their respective ensembles, as well as Nico Muhly, Timo Andres, Synergy Vocals, and others for a three-program retrospective of their inestimable collective legacy. Tuesday, September 9 to Thursday, September 11 at 7:30 [...] Visit I CARE IF YOU LISTEN's Blog to read more!
  • Say Happy Birthday to John Cage on Instagram

    Thomas Deneuville
    4 Sep 2014 | 5:00 am
    As you probably know, tomorrow is John Cage’s 102nd birthday and we’ve already announced some of the festivities on Monday (let’s add the Cage weekend organized by the John Cage Trust, Fisher Center, and The Bard College Conservatory of Music). We would like to invite you to celebrate the birth of one of the most [...] Visit I CARE IF YOU LISTEN's Blog to read more!
  • add this feed to my.Alltop


  • How to Ignite a Passion That You Thought Was Dead (Plus a Giveaway!)

    Grace Miles
    13 Sep 2014 | 8:40 pm
    There are many reasons we phase out of doing something we love, and often we don’t notice how far we’ve strayed until we’re long gone. I was in the garden, watering, when my neighbour’s piano-playing filtered through like the ghost of an old friend. This neighbour and I had never met, but we’d shared the same taste in piano music and […]
  • How Comfortable Are You With Your Wild Side? Here’s a Quiz.

    Grace Miles
    4 Sep 2014 | 7:40 am
    Being wild isn’t the same as being comfortable in your own skin. A pianist can be wild in the practice room but uncomfortable displaying this onstage. We have so many names for this– nerves, performance anxiety, butterflies. I’ve interviewed performance experts around the world, and so many of them suggest that the playing must push […]
  • Favourite Moments of Spring/Summer

    Grace Miles
    29 Aug 2014 | 6:01 am
    Before we welcome the fall season, let’s look at how the past few months were enjoyable, interesting, and most of all, worth anticipating. Starting the Design Lab course was one of my major experiments this summer. I like that it was a difficult project, that sometimes I ignored my guts and slapped my forehead afterwards, that I was […]
  • 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 […]
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Grand Piano Passion™

  • Piano Keys: Theory, History, and Secrets Unlocked

    Jay Alan Zimmerman, Contributing Writer
    8 Sep 2014 | 2:00 am
    Learn the history of how our modern piano keys came to be, and what they represent, from sound frequencies and mathematical relationships to music theory. Jay Alan Zimmerman, Contributing Writer The full article Piano Keys: Theory, History, and Secrets Unlocked is on Grand Piano Passion™.
  • A Listening Profit from My Hearing Loss

    Nancy M. Williams, Founding Editor
    2 Sep 2014 | 9:55 am
    Nancy M. Williams looks back on how she used to hide her hearing loss, but realizes she draws strong listening skills and musicality from her hearing loss. Nancy M. Williams, Founding Editor The full article A Listening Profit from My Hearing Loss is on Grand Piano Passion™.
  • Top 10 Warning Signs You May Be a Piano Nerd

    Nancy M. Williams, Founding Editor
    25 Aug 2014 | 2:00 am
    An adult piano student has detected an unintended consequence of her passion for piano: becoming a piano nerd. Here's a list of the top 10 warning signs. Nancy M. Williams, Founding Editor The full article Top 10 Warning Signs You May Be a Piano Nerd is on Grand Piano Passion™.
  • Paying Attention at a Classical Piano Performance

    Joanna M. Eng, Contributing Editor
    11 Aug 2014 | 2:00 am
    An adult piano student admits she doesn't know how to listen attentively at a classical piano concert. She embarks on an experiment with Beethoven Sonatas. Joanna M. Eng, Contributing Editor The full article Paying Attention at a Classical Piano Performance is on Grand Piano Passion™.
  • Women Composers Celebrated in Classical Piano Recital

    Joanna M. Eng, Contributing Editor
    14 Jul 2014 | 2:00 am
    AmateurPianists organized a recital featuring piano works by all women composers during Women's History Month. Amateur performers share what they learned. Joanna M. Eng, Contributing Editor The full article Women Composers Celebrated in Classical Piano Recital is on Grand Piano Passion™.
  • add this feed to my.Alltop


  • 15 Things You Need to Know About Supporting Your Child Learning to Play the Piano

    15 Sep 2014 | 9:33 am
    suede5402:Has some really great insights. Especially nos. 3, 5, and 9. I may print this out and distribute to students! Originally posted on Elissa Milne: This list was first published in It Takes Two Generations at the end of 2013.  If you’re a parent who has no background in playing a musical instrument it’s easy to be overwhelmed by the number of things the piano teacher accidentally takes for granted along the way. Don’t be overly worried about this – the teacher won’t have enough time in each lesson to fill in all the gaps and still keep your child engaged and enthused about…
  • Moving!

    4 Jun 2014 | 10:18 am
    We are jumping ship from our present wordpress home and putting our blog where it belongs – on our regular website.  Find future posts (and old ones as soon as we migrate them) here!
  • Free treble clef note reading worksheet

    31 Mar 2014 | 8:07 pm
    I’ve added a new worksheet that you can download for free. In order to get it, you’ll need to like my Facebook page. Once you’ve done that, find the tab that says Fan Freebies and follow the links.  You can see a preview of the worksheet below.  Let me know if you have any trouble downloading it. The worksheet itself is a treble clef note ID worksheet.  It uses C position, Middle C position, and G position notes (or C4 through D5).  As a little lagniappe, there are some vocabulary questions at the end. PS.  This worksheet was created using the VexTab Music Notation…
  • File fixed! Iko Iko sheet music should work now

    16 Mar 2014 | 8:43 pm
    Hi everyone.  A couple of commenters have pointed out to me that the file I shared awhile back for the Carnival classic “Iko Iko” was corrupt, so I’m going to re-upload it.  Let me know if this one doesn’t work. Link follows the gratuitous puppy pic: Just for fun. My pup Petunia dressed up for Mardi Gras Get the music.
  • New Google Doc Add-on Vex-Tab Music Notation + Free Worksheet

    11 Mar 2014 | 2:39 pm
    I was browsing on reddit as I am sometimes wont to do, and I learned about the new and exciting music notation tool for Google Docs.  For those of you not familiar with Google Docs, think of it as basically a free version of Microsoft Office provided by Google.  One significant difference between Google Docs and Office though is that Docs automatically backs up your documents online (not saved on your computer). Anyway, enough about Docs.  The important news is that you can now use an add-on with Docs to notate music (for free!)  VexTab enables you to code music into your document and…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Classical Commentary: Barry Lenson's Classical Music Blog

  • The Dumbest Thing I Ever Heard about Opera, Part One

    Barry Lenson
    15 Sep 2014 | 2:39 pm
    Dolora Zajic – Are you going to tell me that anybody sang this aria better than this in years gone by?In case you missed it, the title of today’s post is a joke. But it is a joke with a point, because just when you think you have heard the dumbest thing ever said about opera, somebody seems to come along to top it.But of all the dumb things ever said about opera, this is surely one of the dumbest . . . “All the great voices . . . where have they gone?”I have heard this idiotic opinion many times over the years. I think the first time was about 40 years ago (gulp, I must be old) when I…
  • A Very Smart Bluffer’s Guide to Classical Music

    Barry Lenson
    4 Sep 2014 | 7:18 am
    I recently wrote an article “Twelve Musical Works that Every Student Should Know,” for the Classical Archives Newsletter.In the weeks since then, I’ve been thinking about cultural literacy, which can be roughly defined as a person’s knowledge about the most important stuff that ever happened.   I don’t know about you, but I have come to know many people who have graduated from college – even very prestigious ones – who don’t know a dog-eared thing about some of the most important cultural milestones ever.  Here are some examples, which don’t pertain only to…
  • 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 –…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Stars & Catz » Classical Music & Opera Buzz

  • Music Review: New York Philharmonic Begins Season at the Movies + MORE

    Oliver Braithwaite
    17 Sep 2014 | 4:55 pm
      Today’s News & Buzz   Handel Xerxes ENO – “Alice Coote’s Xerxes was superbly sung, covering the full range from the short lyric arias through the virtuoso bluff and bluster to the intense pain of the extended da capo arias. Coote has a very personal way with Handel and her performance was a […]
  • Xerxes opera review: Revival shows how much of a handle Nicholas Hytner's had on Handel + MORE

    Oliver Braithwaite
    16 Sep 2014 | 4:24 pm
      Today’s News & Buzz   Dominique-René de Lerma: Dallas Opera Vocal Competition will be held 18-19 April 2015. Application deadline is 15 November 2014. – Dominique-René de Lerma writes:The Dallas Opera Vocal Competition will be held 18-19 April 2015.  Application deadline is 15 November 2014.  The judges will be Brain Zeger, Keith Cerny, […]
  • Some More New on the Proms + MORE

    Oliver Braithwaite
    15 Sep 2014 | 3:54 pm
      Today’s News & Buzz   Some More New on the Proms – On August 27, the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Myung-Whun Chung, in its first appearance at the Proms, included, along with Debussy’s La Mer and the Tschaikovsky Sixth Symphony, Šu, a concerto for Sheng and orchestra by their compatriot Unsuk Chin, […]
  • PROM 73: Extraordinary Mahler Performance from Gilbert and Gewandhaus Orchestra + MORE

    Oliver Braithwaite
    14 Sep 2014 | 3:24 pm
      Today’s News & Buzz   Magda Olivero obituary – Italian prima donna with one of the longest careers in the history of operaThe Italian prima donna Magda Olivero, who has died aged 104, had one of the most remarkable careers of the 20th century, above all as a leading exponent of the often-derided […]
  • Gidon Kremer: I fail to understand some of my unnamed colleagues + MORE

    Oliver Braithwaite
    13 Sep 2014 | 2:57 pm
      Today’s News & Buzz   Kings Place Festival: The Night Shift – Henry Purcell; Anna Dennis, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment; The Night Shift at the Kings Place Festival Reviewed by Robert Hugillon Sep 12 2014 Star rating: 4.5OAE’s casual brand brings Purcell to Kings Place in an involving performanceThe Night Shift […]
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    The Violin Channel | The World's Leading Violin, Strings & Classical Music News Source

  • Finalists Announced at Enescu Competition – Including VC ‘Young Artist’ Fedor Roudine

    17 Sep 2014 | 6:25 am
    The 3 Finalists have today been announced at the 2014 George Enescu International Violin Competition, in Romania – including VC ‘Young Artist’ Fedor Roudine. This 2014 Finalists are: VC ‘Young Artist’ Fedor Roudine (22, Russia), Wonhee Bae (27, South Korea) and Stefan Tarara (28, Germany). The Final Round will be held on the 19th September – with the 1st prize winner to receive 15,000 EU (USD $19,400). The Violin Channel will keep you abreast of the result as the prizes are being awarded. The post Finalists Announced at Enescu Competition – Including VC ‘Young…
  • Finalists Announced at Kreisler Competition – Including VC ‘Young Artists’ Emmanuel Tjeknavorian & William Hagen

    17 Sep 2014 | 6:13 am
    The 3 Finalists have today been announced at the 2014 Fritz Kreisler International Violin Competition, in Vienna, Austria – including VC ‘Young Artists’ Emmanuel Tjeknavorian and William Hagen. The 2014 Finalists are: VC ‘Young Artist’ Emmanuel Tjeknavorian (19, Austria), VC ‘Young Artist’ William Hagen (21, United States) and Jan Mracek (23, Czech Republic). The Final Round will be held on the 19th September – with the 1st prize winner to receive 15,000 EU (USD $19,400), a CD recording, career management and support and a coveted solo engagement with the Vienna…
  • John MacBain, Computer Scoring System – Indianapolis International Violin Competition [VIDEO]

    16 Sep 2014 | 2:57 pm
    The Violin Channel recently caught up with mathematician and computer engineer, John MacBain – the man instrumental in the development of the Indianapolis International Violin Competition‘s rigorous jury-score processing system. Mr MacBain sat with us and outlined the computer algorithm and voting system, developed in 1994 to serve as the underpin to the competition’s core principals of ‘integrity’ and ‘independence’. “Full independence is absolutely important otherwise you get the traditional European jury system where the dominant personalities…
  • Electric Guitar Now More Popular than Violin in British Schools

    16 Sep 2014 | 4:33 am
    A comprehensive study, published this week in the UK, has found the electric guitar has now overtaken the violin, for the first time – in the list of six most popular instruments played by British children. Conducted by the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music, the new Making Music findings have suggested 13% of 5-17 year olds in the United Kingdom now play the electric guitar – compared to 12% who play the violin. A spokesperson for the board has suggested it potentially reflected the fact that a growing number of children are now exposed to music through TV shows such as…
  • Finalists Announced at Indianapolis International Violin Competition – Including 3 VC ‘Young Artists’

    15 Sep 2014 | 6:55 pm
    The 6 Finalists, have just minutes ago, been announced at the 2014 9th International Violin Competition of Indianapolis – including 3 VC ‘Young Artists’. This year’s 6 Finalists are: VC ‘Young Artist’ Tessa Lark (25, United States), VC ‘Young Artist’ Yoo Jin Jang (23, South Korea), VC ‘Young Artist’ Dami Kim (25, South Korea), Jinjoo Cho (26, South Korea), Ji Yoon Lee (22, South Korea) and Ji Young Lim (19, South Korea). VC ‘Young Artist’ Tessa Lark, from the United States – with piano collaborator, Ellen Hwangbo VC ‘Young…
  • add this feed to my.Alltop

    Stephen P Brown

  • #PsalmQuest 27 – Mirror 5 for viola cello and percussion

    8 Sep 2014 | 5:04 am
    It's a short piece I think you'll enjoy, especially the dance-like middle section. "Mirror Form" is not new but it's the term I am giving to a reflective structure... Give me more... →
  • Identity vs. Isolation

    4 Sep 2014 | 2:33 pm
    I have still yet to find any experience that affects me more than being in a room with other people who are making music - living, breathing, emotional human be-ings. Give me more... →
  • Consuming Classical Music

    2 Sep 2014 | 3:55 am
    It seems education remains the key to any meaningful experience of anything. Classical music of any sort... Give me more... →
  • iTunes in trouble

    28 Aug 2014 | 7:10 am
    According to Reverbnation, iTunes is strategically placing themselves behind the 8-ball by refusing any more "Classical" music submissions. Give me more... →
  • #PsalmQuest 26 – Cerddoriaeth 2 for solo piano

    28 Aug 2014 | 4:13 am
    "Rhythmically gripping" is how one anonymous member of a classical music review team described this new solo piano piece which focuses not only on rhythm, but expresses four emotions. Give me more... →
Log in