Blog Profile / Slipped Disc

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Archived Since:April 9, 2015

Blog Post Archive

Seiji Ozawa won’t be flying long-haul any more

30 minutes agoMusic / Classical : Slipped Disc

The Japanese conductor, 82, has been advised by his doctors not to undertake performances after long journeys. Ozawa, who has survived cancer of the oesophagus, has cancelled the Berlin Philharmonic in January.

Did Maxwell Davies have a Hungarian ancestor?

From the Lebrecht Album of the Week: … You’d never know that Hitler and Stalin were banging at the door. A bagpipe wail in the fifth Divertimento weirdly anticipates Peter Maxwell Davies’s Orkney Wedding. Actually, Max would have loved this…. Uncover the composer here. And here. And here.

University suspends Solti conductor for ‘intimidation’

Shortly before his opening concert on Friday, Brown University told Brandon Keith Brown, music director of its orchestra, that he was ‘relived of his duties’. Apparently, students complained that he was too harsh in rehearsals. Brandon Keith Brown came to attention as the audience favourite in the Solti conducting competition in 2012. He has been […]

Me, too? A composer examines his conscience

From our diarist Anthea Kreston: This week, social media exploded with #MeToo. After the allegations and subsequent (finally, we all said) taking down of the powerful film producer Harvey Weinstein, women began to speak out. Millions put their stories on Facebook – and frankly, it would floor me if any woman, anywhere, would have managed […]

Tragedy: Principal flute is killed in California wildfires

Lynne Powell, principal flute of the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra for 17 years, died last week at the family home in Santa Rosa during the devastating fires. Report and video here.  

While Slipped Disc was in China

Readers have been asking about the lack of activity on Slipped Disc for the past five days. I have been in Shanghai while the Communist Party conference was on and access to western social media was more than usually resricted. Despite these restraints it was warming to meet – at my lectures, book signings and […]

When Jews had to form their own orchestras

Michael Haas has written a fascinating paper on the Kulturbund, the cultural organisation that arose in Hitler’s Germany when Jews were banned from general musical activity. Some of the recordings here are sensational. Read and listen here.

Raffles violinist escapes jail again

Victoria Yellop was given a suspended sentence in July after a judge was persuaded that she had been bullied by a violent boyfriend into burgling a house she was looking after. Yesterday, she was given another suspended sentence in Kent for causing serious injuries to a motorcyclist while driving under the influence of drugs. She […]

St Louis posts first surplus this century

The St Louis Symphony Orchestra is in a good place. For the fiscal year ended August 31, 2017, the SLSO reported its first operating surplus of the 21st century. On an operating budget of $30.3 million, there was a surplus of $18,000. The endowment reached $214 million. There’s a new five-year contract with the musicians. Stéphane […]

Who got this cellist to play 140 concerts a year?

The American cellist Alisa Weilerstein, now based in Berlin, gives a typically forthright account of her life and thoughts in the latest episode of Living the Classical Life (first broadcast on Slipped Disc). She is playing Carnegie Hall tonight (Tuesday) and she tells Zsolt Bognar that she remembers every performance. ‘I could talk about each […]

Death of a well-travelled Russian conductor, 73

The death is reported in Moscow of Fedor Glushchenko, an accomplished conductor who worked with many UK and European orchestras and made recordings for Hyperion and Chandos, among other labels.   In the 1990s he was head of the Arturo Toscanini orchestra in Italy and the RTVE Symphony in Madrid. Latterly he was principal guest […]

Scottish vocal coach is arrested over sexual messages to child

A lecturer at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland is due to appear in court in Glasgow charged with sharing sexual images with a child, aged 13 to 15. The man’s name has been removed from the RCS website. The incident was reported in the Sunday Mail, but there is no trace of it online. Presumptions […]

Swiss orch suffers 20 percent subscription cancellations

Zurich’s Tonhalle is undergoing a three-year renovation. The orchestra has moved out to an industrial estate in the burbs. One in five concertgoers has cancelled their subscriptions. Read here.

London studio is saved after £200,000 neighbours war

Air Studios in Hampstead has fought off an attempt by rich neighbours to dig a swimming pool in their basement, an excavation that would have put the studio out of action for several months. Thousands of musicians rallied to support the studio, which spent £200,000 in legal fees to fight the neighbours. Story here.     […]

Hvorostovsky, 55 today, receives greetings from Putin

The Russian president has posted birthday wishes on the Kremlin website to the celebrated baritone. Putin writes: ‘Let me heartily congratulate you on your birthday and express my sincere admiration for your talent, strength of mind and firmness.’ Dmitri Hvorostovsky is receiving treatment for brain cancer.

A leading organist reaches 100

Congratulations to Dr Francis Jackson, master of music at York Minster from 1946 to 1982 and former president of the Royal College of Organists. He turned 100 on October 2nd and continues to compose.

How many desperate conductors out there? 563

The Danish National Symphony Orchestra has just closed applications for the Nikolai Malko Competition. To its consternation, the number of candidates was more than twice the previous record – 563 of them, aged 18 to 35. Recent winners include Rafael Payare and Joshua Weilerstein (pictured).  

Musicians are ‘three times more likely to suffer from depression’

Help Musicians UK has set up a task force to address high levels of mental illness in the music professions. A new study identifies four contributory factors: – Money worries – A career in music is often precarious and unpredictable. Many musicians have several different jobs as part of a portfolio career, and as a result […]

German award for Venezuela resistant

The Venezuelan-born pianist Gabriela Montero, a persistent critic of the Caracas regime, has been honoured with the 2018 Heidelberg Spring music prize. The prize money is 10,000 Euros.

Death of a Soviet Grammy nominee, 80

The death of the bass singer Nikolai Okhotnikov has been announced by the Mariinsky Theatre. An international artist, he was nominated for a Grammy for his role in Prokofiev’s War and Peace.  

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