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The future’s bright, the future’s Korean

The Korea Herald reminds us today that three of the major music competitions this year have fallen to their young contenders. 1 Chopin Competition   2 Busoni International   3 Reine Elizabeth

More than just a piano recital - Chopin's mazurkas at St John's Smith Square

Warren Mailley-Smith - © Ben Ealovega The pianist Warren Mailley-Smith is currently performing all of Chopin's works for solo piano in a concert series at St John's Smith Square, a total of 11 recitals in all. For his recital on 27 November 2015 he has invited the Mazury Dance Company to join him. Show More Summary

Opera singers are paid more to appear nude than ballet dancers (and women less)

An enterprising journalist in Australia has been trawling the union agreements to see who gets paid more to bare all, or just bare bits. Top earners, apparently, are male singers who uncover their penis ($67.62 per show). A dancer’s dick is worth just $35.43. Furthermore, bums and bare breasts (women only) earn an additional $43.90 for each […]

Finns shocked at symphonist’s death

A contemporary of Magnus Lindberg and Esa-Pekka Salonen, the composer Jouni Kaipainen died this morning, a day before his 59th birthday, after a long illness. He leaves 4 symphonies, 9 concertos and 7 string quartets, a legacy that is widely respected across the Nordic lands.  

Music mourns pal Joey

National US media have not got around to reporting the death yesterday, after a heart attack, of the Boston concertmaster and Utah music director Joseph Silverstein, but tributes are flooding social media for a musician who was known to thousands of friends as, simply, Joey. Utah’s former concertmaster Ralph Matson spoke for many when he […]

Jazz inspired - the Britten Sinfonia at Saffron Hall

Britten Sinfonia Stravinsky, Zappa, Ogerman, Milhaud, Bainbridge; Eddie Gomez, Steven Osborne, Britten Sinfonia, Kristjan Järvi; Saffron Hall Reviewed by Robert Hugill on Nov 21 2015 Star rating: 3.5 Varied but mixed jazz-inspired programme...Show More Summary

Britten Sinfonia become resident at Saffron Hall

Britten Sinfonia at Saffron Hall - © Roger King The Britten Sinfonia has been a regular visitor to Saffron Hall in Saffron Walden since the hall's opening concert in 2013. Now this partnership has been cemented with the orchestra being announced as resident at the hall for the 2016-17 season. Show More Summary

Word of the death of a great American concertmaster

Leading concertmasters and close friends have shared reports of the death today of Joseph Silverstein, legendary concertmaster of the Boston Symphony from 1962 to 1984. He was 83. After stepping down at Boston he became music director of the Utah Symphony, 1993 to 1998, a most uncommon upgrade. Joey was born in Detroit, studied with his […]

Dallas renews ruling pair

Dallas Opera has extended the contracts of General Director & CEO Keith Cerny (pictured left), and Music Director Emmanuel Villaume to June 30, 2022. Cerny joined Dallas in 2010, Villaume three years later. We have just saved you from reading a 2,000-word adulatory press release. Be grateful.  

Renata Scotto: I slapped a tenor

The prima donna has been telling Corriere della Sera about male divas…. she’s not a fan. I didn’t really like Mario Del Monaco. Also, I once gave Giuseppe Di Stefano a slap on stage. During a duet in L’elisir d’amore, instead of singing, he wandered towards the back of the stage to eat an apple. […]

In the sky I am walking

In the sky I am walking - Rebecca Hardwick, George Chambersphoto by Minjas Zugik taken at a performance prio r to that at the Greengrassi Gallery Karlheinz Stockhausen In the sky I am walking; Rebecca Hardwick, George Chambers; Greengrassi...Show More Summary

Yannick reins back as Philadelphia continues its slide

There’s a frank assessment by Peter Dobrin today in the Philadelphia Inquirer of the unchecked decline of a once-indomitable orchestra, a decline that is gathering speed despite the partnership of a world-class conductor and dazzling musicians. Key Philly facts: 1 Attendance is down from 160,000 in 2014-15 to 153,000. One in four seats is empty […]

US music director quits Aachen

Kazem Abdullah, 36, has let it be known that he won’t renew after July 2017. It’s a nice town but no career has taken off from Aachen since Herbert von Karajan’s in 1935. And conditions were a bit different then.

End of play: Keyboard museum shuts down

The owners of Finchcock’s Musical Museum have let it be known they are shutting down and selling up. Housed in a stately home in Kent, Finchock’s has one of the world’s finest concentrations of historic keyboard instruments. But its owners, Katrina and Richard Burnett, are in their late 70s and ready to sell up. They […]

The virgin Mikado

Richard Suart as the Lord High Executioner, doing his Little List. Photo: Sarah Lee Confession time, folks. I have never seen The Mikado before. OK, maybe the first half on TV when I was about ten, but no more. Indeed, I have never even been to a professional performance of a Gilbert & Sullivan. Show More Summary

The organ weeps: Gustav Leonhardt’s heir has died

The Dutch organist, composer and conductor Jacques van Oortmerssen has died at the age of 65. Rotterdam born, Jacques succeeded Gustav Leonhardt at Amsterdam Waalse kerk, where he played the great Christian Müller organ of 1734. Widely esteemed, he performed and taught at major festivals around the world, including the BBC Proms. Like his predecessor, he recorded […]

Meet Mrs Thielemann

At the post-Hansel and Gretel party at the Vienna State Opera, a rare public appearance by the conductor’s mother, who accompanies him everywhere. Christian Thielemann, Agnes Buchbinder, Rudolf Buchbinder, Mrs Thielemann. Photo: Wiener Staatsoper/ Christian Pöhn

A second bassoonist wins a Nobel Prize

You may recall the joy that Thomas Südhof spread when, on winning the 2013 Nobel Prize for medicine/physiology in 2013, he said he owed it all to his bassoon teacher. Südhof, a passionate bassoonist, went on to relate precisely what he had applied from music to his work in science. Now, the indomitable editors of The […]

In the tense streets of Brussels, a cellist plays Hallelujah

Amateur video, filmed today in a European capital under state of siege. Source (here) Els Ampe tweeted: Strange atmosphere in #Brussels thesedays … Armoured vehicles with cello sounds in background.  

Sad news: Death of enterprising baritone and festival director, aged 57

We have been informed of the passing of Richard Cowan, an American bass-baritone who sang leading roles in major US and European houses and in 1998 founded the Lyrique en Mer opera festival in Belle Île, France. Richard had been struggling for several years with a mortal disease; his death was announced by the festival. As a […]

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