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New York Philharmonic sheds a vice-president

Theodore Wiprud has announced he is leaving as head of education at the NY Phil after 13 years. ‘I’m going to wrap it up in early February, with our Young People’s Concerts for Schools about the Harlem Renaissance,’ he says. Safe to assume that Debora Borda has soemthing in mind more akin to the Los […]

Watch: Stravinsky wakes up someone in the audience

Firebird, this week, in Redding, California. Conductor, Scott Seaton.

In Don Pasquale, a striking orchestra is replaced by solo piano

The Basque National Orchestra went on strike yesterday over various failings of its management. The timing was unfortunate, coinciding with the opening night of Don Pasquale at Bilbao Opera. Instead of cancelling the performance, the opera house engaged an American pianist, James Vaughan, to play the score in a performance conducted by Roberto Abbado. The orchestra […]

Watch: Crash, bash, instrument smashes at climax of Mahler’s 8th

Here’s what happened this week when the Danish Radio Symphony played Mahler’s 8th symphony with Fabio Luisi. The DR techs have helpfully offered a slow-mo replay to show how the cymbal shatters towards the end of the first movement. Watch here.  

Aled Jones is off the BBC while a complaint is investigated

The presenter has withdrawn from appearances on the BBC following  report in the Sun newspaper that an allegation had been made of ‘inappropriate messages and contact with a female member of staff’. The former boy star, 46, has apologised ‘for any upset caused.’ He denies any wrongdoing and continues to broadcast for Classic FM.  

Another US newspaper deletes classical reviews

16 hours agoMusic / Classical : Slipped Disc

The Hartford Courant has decided not to review the Hartford Symphony any more. Editor’s Note: The Courant has shifted the direction of its coverage of the symphony to focus more on advance stories and information to better serve those interested in attending these events who might need more time to make arrangements.   This seems to […]

Trump’s tax bill ‘will greatly reduce musicians’ tax deductions’

16 hours agoMusic / Classical : Slipped Disc

If you are a musician working in the US, you’ll probably need to read this analysis of what the new tax bill means for you. It’s by Scott Stratton, financial adviser and trombone player, married to the Dallas Symphony’s principal oboe:   Musicians have been asking me if the new tax bill passed by the […]

Watch: Beethoven’s 7th played by viola quintet

16 hours agoMusic / Classical : Slipped Disc

Nicholas Kitchen of the Borromeo String Quartet has found an 1816 arrangement for viola quintet of Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony and gave its first modern performance this summer at the Heifetz Institute – rearranged for two violas, two violins and cello. It’s weirdly effective. Watch.

ENO’s Marnie first review: Sorry, it’s not a classic

16 hours agoMusic / Classical : Slipped Disc have the first review of last night’s English National Opera world premiere of Nico Muly’s new work. The headline is ‘Marnie, English National Opera review – hyped new opera doesn’t hit the heights’. The closing line is: ‘So while there were many good things to enjoy, the whole thing did not offer as engaging […]

Putin’s hit squad almost killed a London pianist

It has emerged that the FSB unit which poisoned the Russian defector Alexander Litvinenko in November 2006 almost took the life of a pianist at the London hotel where they met their prey. Derek Conlon, 51, later drank from the same coffee cup. Although it had been through the dishwasher, it was still contaminated with […]

One label takes over the entire classical top 10


AC/DC star dies

Malcolm Young, co-founder of the Australian rock band AC/DC with his brother Angus Young, died today. He was 64 and had been struggling with dementia. The group sold 200 million records. Guardian obituary.

Distant Love: Ashley Riches & Anna Huntley in Beethoven, Schubert, Berlioz, Duparc & more

Ashley Riches (Photo Debbie Scanlon) Beethoven, Mahler, Poulenc, Schubert, Schuman, Duparc, Berlioz, Amy Woodforde-Finden, Frank Bridge, Brahms, Albert Roussel, Rogers & Hammerstein; Anna Huntley, Ashley Riches, Nigel Foster; LondonShow More Summary

A sidelined Russian composer turns 80 this week

In the late Soviet era, Nikolai Kapustin looked like a route to the future – a composer who ignored party norms and wrote in an idiom that, while rooted in Bach, is easily mistaken for jazz. He turns 80 this week, on November 22. Let’s give him a shout-out.

Itzhak Perlman teaches child with leukaemia

From the Korea Herald: A child violinist battling leukemia had the chance of a lifetime when his musical hero Itzhak Perlman gave him a special one-on-one master class. Cha Hee-su, 8, was greeted at the waiting room where Perlman was resting after his concert at Seoul Arts Center on Sunday. Cha played “Humoresque,” a piece […]

The pianist who plays on death row

From Al-Arabiya: Shireen Maalouf is one of the most precious people I met while studying in Lebanon. She resembles sweet rain that flows in a forgotten and remote land. She simply feels the pain of others and hopes to save them at all times. Her financial capabilities were not much but she had a bigger […]

Our string quartet has sleepovers in a Schloss

From our diarist Anthea Kreston: I am resting up between rehearsal and concert – snuggled into a comfortable bed, fluffy white duvet atop, knobby chunky blanket covering my feet. We have returned to the private castle in Brussels, owned by our Quartet tax man, a hearty and happy man who loves classical music and a […]

In from the cold: ECM Records starts streaming

The most independent, individualist and esoteric of classical labels has done a deal with DG. See release below:   Munich/Berlin, November 17, 2017 – Esteemed independent label ECM Records today announced they are expanding their partnership...Show More Summary

Roger Sessions "From My Diary"

I have enjoyed reading Roger Sessions's book The Musical Experience of Composer, Performer, Listener (the source of the "guest post" from a few days ago) a great deal. I used to be afraid of Sessions's music, but now that I have read...Show More Summary

Girls of the Golden West: Go See It!

If you read this blog, you know that next week San Francisco Opera will present the premiere run of performances of Girls of the Golden West, by John Adams, libretto by Peter Sellars, directed by Peter Sellars.I have not seen it, I have...Show More Summary

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