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Keep Calm and Count the Delegates

Cruz: 8 delegatesTrump: 7 delegatesRubio: 7 delegatesThat's a dead heat. Also, 72% of Republicans didn't caucus for Cruz, with similarly high numbers for Trump and Rubio. Cruz didn't "deal Trump a humbling loss" at all.It's not over yet. Wait to see what happens in the next six weeks. (Ditto for Clinton & Sanders.)

Opera mourns popular staff director

Dafydd Burne-Jones, a staff director at Scottish Opera for 37 years, has died of cancer, the company has announced. Known to everyone as Robert, he said the highlight of his career was working with Leonard Bernstein on Candide in 1988. Asked what he loved best about the job, he said: ‘Every day I am surrounded […]

The Scot who sang with Callas

The death has been reported of Duncan Robertson, a splendid tenor and pillar of Scottish Opera, who enjoyed a far-flung international career. Duncan was 91. He recorded with Callas, Giulini and other giants of his era. in the small notices of the Daily Telegraph

Weirdness of the week: Every Satie record played at once

From our partner site, MusicalToronto: A sound artist named Brendan Landis, who records as Hey Exit, has created a fascinating piece by combing every known recording of Satie’s Gymnopedie 1. As each plays at the same time, the attention shifts to the variations in tempo and phrasing, and creates a dense sound with rounded edges. Wild […]

Why are the best string quartets mostly Czech?

From this week’s Lebrecht Album of the Week on scena.org and elsewhere: It must be something in the plum juice that produces, generation after generation, a cluster of distinctive string quartets from the country now constituted as the Czech Republic. There is nothing like a Czech string quartet. It’s a generic school of ensemble playing […]

Two violinists mess around with dancers

This is Aleksey Igudesman’s delightful new act with Manaho Shimokawa. And this is, er, not. Things you no longer have to do once you’re music director of the New Philharmonic.

Rehabilitating the man who ‘buggered up’ Sydney Opera House

Peter Hall, the architect who took over the unfinished building after the resignation of its visionary designer Jorn Utzon, received so much abuse that he retreated into a bottle and died a broken man at 64. Now, it’s being acknowledged that Hall made the best of a very bad job. If anyone buggered up the opera […]

James Levine gets candid about Parkinson’s

The music director of the Metropolitan Opera keeps much of his life under wraps, including the fairly open secret that he has been suffering for several years from Parkinson’s Disease. The tremors have been noticeable. But when Peter Gelb suggested that now was the time to make way for a younger man Levine, 72, took […]

World premiere opera sold out two weeks before opening

We could see that the Staatsoper in Munich was packed on the opening night of South Pole. What we learned later was that the entire run of the opera has been pre-booked. Not one seat left to be sold. Without having heard a note of the music – or indeed of the composer, Miroslav Srnka […]

Vienna Phil signs away five more Salzburg summers

All the fizz has gone out of the relationship. It used to go down to the wire, with the VPO demanding more money and Salzburg threatening to replace them with a radio orchestra – from Slovakia, if necessary. Yesterday, Vienna Phil renewed the deal without a whimper. (It’s not like they have anything better to […]

Complete Tippett quartets recorded live by the Heath Quartet

Tippett String Quartets; The Heath Quartet; Wigmore Hall Live Reviewed by Robert Hugill on Jan 25 2016 Star rating: 5.0 Dazzling rhythms, complex textures and surprising lyricism in these live performances of Tippett's complete quartets...Show More Summary

Amour: An evening of French Baroque music by candlelight in Oxford

The International Rameau Ensemble, with soprano Katherine Blumenthal and haute-contre Lawrence Olsworth-Peter, is giving a concert in the Ante-Chapel at New College, Oxford on Saturday 6 February 2016. An early Valentine's Day programme, the event will be performed by candle-light and be semi-staged by Dionysios Kyropoulos. Show More Summary

Met Governance, Again (and Again and Again)

Via Parterre Box, a story in the Times by the estimable Michael Cooper raises the curtain on what's been going on at the Met recently. La Cieca calls it bizarre, and indeed some of the phrasing is very, very careful. But you don't need...Show More Summary

Yentob and the BBC: It’s not over til the lady sings

The Commons Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee spares no one in its report on the collapse of Kids Company: Camila Batmanghelidjh, the trustees, government ministers, the auditors and regulators. However, the heaviest criticism is for the charity trustees led by the BBC’s Alan Yentob. Show More Summary

Eschenbach: We were refugees in snow, they come in boats

The conductor Christoph Eschenbach has urged the German government not to set a limit on the number of refugees it admits. In an interview with DPA ahead of a Europe tour with the National Symphony Orchestra of Washington DC, Eschenbach recalled his flight as a child from East Prussia, ahead of the Russian army. His […]

Korea’s Chopin winner gives two fingers to Seoul

Seong-Jin Cho, the first Korean to win the Chopin Competition, has signed a contract with Deutsche Grammophon, which surprises no-one since the label sold over 100,000 copies of his winning performance. But here’s the surprise: Seong-Jin has agreed to make his debut studio recording in Dresden. The conductor will be Myung Whun Chung, who was forced […]

The worst orchestra in the world to manage?

We hear by a leaked email that the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande has parted company with its latest chief executive, Henk Swennen. He seemed to be doing a good job. But so did his predecessor, Miguel Esteban, who was fired without good reason or notice. Miguel’s dismissal cost the dimwit board half a million […]

James Lowe

The young British conductor James Lowe is best known in the UK for his work with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and for his tenure as the Artistic Director of the Halle Harmony Youth Orchestra. Out of the UK his career as burgeoned and he now has not one, but two chief conductorships to his credit. Show More Summary

English lose again in Munich

It’s one of those operas where you know the English team can’t win. It’s called South Pole. Captain Scott got beaten there in 1911 by Roald Amundsen’s Norwegian team. Scott’s team perished on the way home. It’s a tragedy that haunted my childhood, and my father’s before me. But is it an opera? The Bavarian State […]

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