Posts

Showing posts from January, 2010

CD Reviews

Image

Concert of Chamber Music a Success - Music by Chip Michael

I am very please to say last night's concert of my music went VERY well.Here are a few of the pieces from it: Bamboo Suite
Caitlin Conklin – Oboe, Danielle Smoot - English Horn, Adam Lusk - Bassoon
Bamboo Suite is a piece written for a trio of double reeds. In four movements, the piece covers a great deal of territory concerning 20th century music. The opening, First Sprouts - Simplicity, explores interval based music. The piece is written taking a root note with notes one semi-tone up, two semi-tones up and 5 semi-tones up. A pitch class of four notes was chosen to cross beyond the three instruments – require more than one note per player to complete the set. Scherzo – The Great Grass, takes the motive of the first movement and plays with the rhythm obscuring the pulse again and again in a playful manner. The Choral – Delicate Blossoms explores the tonal color of the various instruments utilizing alternate fingerings as well. Finale – Versatility is a “neo-romantic” piec…

Mark O'Connor Annouces "Illuminating" 2010 String Camps in New York City and Tennessee

O'Connor Violin Method Gaining Traction Among Teachers, StudentsMark O'Connor, the multi-Grammy-Award-winning composer and violinist, has announced the opening of registration for his 2010 String Camps in New York City and Tennessee. O'Connor has gathered the world's top violinists, violists and cellists to give intermediate, advanced and professional string players an extraordinary week of instruction and performance at each camp. The camps will also offer teacher training courses in the new O'Connor Violin Method, which has been widely praised since its debut in fall 2009 as "an American grown rival to the Suzuki method" (The New Yorker). It was inspired by his students and by his belief that those who learn to play the "rich stream of American music" (as the Wall Street Journal recently described the O'Connor Method) will enjoy playing music for a lifetime. Teachers who have been trained in the Method have been wildly enthusiastic, call…

TONIGHT: Cleveland Orchestra and New World Symphony Benefit Concert for HAITI

"Musicians for Haiti" - a Benefit Concert - Wednesday January 27th 8pm at Lincoln Theatre, MiamiMusicians from The Cleveland Orchestra and the New World Symphony, America’s Orchestral Academy (NWS), will join forces to present “Musicians for Haiti,” a concert to benefit Haiti, Wednesday, January 27 at 8:00 P.M. at the Lincoln Theatre (541 Lincoln Road). The performance will be conducted by The Cleveland Orchestra Music Director Franz Welser-Möst and NWS Conducting Fellow Teddy Abrams. The performance, the latest collaboration between the two prestigious institutions in a relationship that began nearly 18 years ago, will include Barber’s Adagio for Strings, Elgar’s Nimrod from Enigma Variations, Beethoven’s Leonore Overture No. 3 and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4. All ticket sales, sponsorship money and donations will benefit Partners In Health (PIH, www.pih.org), an organization that has been working on the ground in Haiti for over 20 years and is helping those affect…

Marvin Hamlisch returns to Colorado for Pops Concert featuring the Music of Lerner and Loewe

Image
Marvin Hamlisch conducts the Colorado Symphony Orchestra with selections from My Fair Lady to Brigadoon and Gigi. Saturday's concert will present the music of Lerner and Loewe, who created a lasting legacy on Broadway, as well as a songbook of hits that transcend generations. Join Marvin Hamlisch as he leads the CSO, CSO Chorus and three acclaimed vocalists in some of the most memorable music of the 20th century. The Music of Lerner and Loewe
CSO Pops
Sat | Jan 30
Marvin Hamlisch, principal pops conductor
Lauren Dennis, soprano | Drew Frady, tenor
Stephen Day, baritone
Colorado Symphony Orchestra Chorus

Baltimore Symphony Orchestra SuperPops Kicks-off BSO Under the Big Top Festival with Mysterioso: Music, Magic, Mayhem & Mirth, March 4-7

Jack Everly and the BSO team up with magicians and comediansThe Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, led by BSO Principal Pops Conductor Jack Everly, will open its four-week BSO Under the Big Top festival with Mysterioso: Music, Magic, Mayhem & Mirth on Thursday, March 4 at 8 p.m. at The Music Center at Strathmore and Friday, March 5 and Saturday, March 6 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, March 7 at 3 p.m. at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall. The program features quick-change artists David and Dania and the comedic magic act of Les Arnold and Dazzle. This family-friendly program marks the start of the BSO’s four-week festival of circus-themed programming, titled BSO Under the Big Top—the cultural centerpiece of the Orchestra’s 2009-2010 season. This program combines a variety of musical styles with winning visual performances. The concert features Les Arnold and his daughter, Alex, also known as “Dazzle,” who offer impressive magic with a comedic flair, set in the timeless era of the 1930s and 1…

Enchantment Theatre Company Joins the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra to bring Arabian Nights to Life, March 6

Mei-Ann Chen leads Orchestra in Rimsky-Korsakov’s ScheherazadeThe Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and Enchantment Theatre Company, under the direction of Assistant Conductor and League of American Orchestras Conducting Fellow Mei-Ann Chen, will perform the fantastic tales of Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade (based on Arabian Nights) as part of the BSO Family Concert Series on Saturday, March 6 at 11:00 a.m. at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall. The production also includes excerpts from Borodin’s Polovtsian Dances from Prince Igor, Offenbach’s Orpheus in the Underworld and Mussorgsky’s dramatic favorite Night on Bald Mountain. During the winter of 1887, while working to complete Alexander Borodin's unfinished opera Prince Igor, Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov composed an orchestral piece based upon stories and pictures from Arabian Nights. The Enchantment Theater Company will help bring this tale to life using masks, puppets, magic and movement to support the symphonic music of Rimsky-Korsak…

Opera Colorado Announces 2010-2011 Season

La Bohème | Rusalka | CinderellaGeneral Director Greg Carpenter will announce plans for Opera Colorado’s 2010-2011 season at a special reception for donors at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House on Tuesday, January 26th. “Opera Colorado continues to expand our repertoire selection during the 2010-2011 Season,” Carpenter said. “We launch our season with one of the most beloved operas of all time. We then explore unfamiliar territory with some exciting new repertoire. Our final opera has not been seen on the Opera Colorado stage since 1995. During the entire season, we will welcome many new artists who will be joining us along the way for the very first time.”By including a very familiar title along with two works that are new or less familiar to the Colorado audience, Carpenter hopes to appeal to a broad spectrum of opera fans with next season’s repertoire. “We’ve selected operas that we believe will interest both seasoned opera lovers and audiences new to the art form.” Season tickets wi…

Ebène Quartet Returns to North America for Nine-City Winter 2010 Tour

Taking in LA, NYC (Le Poisson Rouge) and DC (Kennedy Center)Ebène’s Virgin Classics Debut Release of Debussy, Ravel and Fauré Won Gramophone “Recording of the Year” Award“Even in a scene chock-full of excellent young groups, the Ebène Quartet stands out for the intensity of its performances and its striking sonic range, as heard on a recently-released Virgin Classics CD nicely filled with exacting, atmospheric accounts of quartets by Fauré, Debussy, and Ravel.” – Time Out New York Described in a New York Times headline as “A String Quartet That Can Easily Morph Into a Jazz Band,” the Paris-based Ebène Quartet, winner this season of Gramophone’s coveted “Recording of the Year” award, returns to North America for a nine-city tour from February 5 – 23. The tour will feature the celebrated ensemble in performances of music heard on its first two releases for Virgin Classics, as well as signature jazz and pop interpretations. The winter tour kicks off in Appleton, Wisconsin (Feb 5) and in…

Anne Akiko Meyers on tour with Chris Botti

Virtuoso violinist performs acclaimed jazz trumpeter’s GRAMMY-nominated Emmanuel on select dates throughout the USThis month the versatile and innovative violinist Anne Akiko Meyers goes on tour with the world’s most celebrated jazz trumpeter, Chris Botti. The first concerts took places earlier in January in Greensville (SC), Morristown (NJ) and Portland (ME) with future dates in Durham (NC) on January 25th and 26th and West Palm Beach on January 28th with more to be announced in the spring. On the program Meyers joins Chris Botti in his GRAMMY-nominated Emmanuel from Botti’s latest recording project Chris Botti in Boston. Both Anne Akiko Meyers and Chris Botti are former Indiana University Music School classmates -- and mutual admirers. In December, when Botti was urgently seeking a world-class violinist to join him right away on his nationwide tour, he asked Meyers -- who had just completed a tour with singing supergroup Il Divo -- to join him and was honored when she enthusias…

Rafal Blechacz, 2005 Chopin Competition Winner, Releases New Recording of Chopin Concertos

Image
2010, Chopin’s bicentennial, will feature the next edition of the Fryderyk Chopin Piano Competition in Poland. Surely one of the great recordings to coincide with the celebrations and competition will be Rafał Blechacz’s interpretations of both Chopin piano concertos on Deutsche Grammophon. Since winning the 2005 competition (the last to take place) his career and international reputation have both steadily grown: he now performs around the world in both concert and recital and continues to focus on his beloved Chopin. The idea for this recording took shape immediately following Blechacz’s unprecedented triumph at the 2005 Chopin Competition where he won the main prize as well as special prizes in all four individual categories. On that occasion he played the E minor concerto. Since then, he has introduced himself to the world, many times playing either the E minor or the F minor concerto, and has consistently earned the highest critical praise. Along with his extraordinary t…

Alan Gilbert Departs for First European Tour with New York Philharmonic: 13 Performances in Nine Cities

Features Guest Soloists Yefim Bronfman and Thomas HampsonAfter a string of highly-acclaimed performances in their home hall, the New York Philharmonic and its Music Director, Alan Gilbert, head out this week for their first European tour. EUROPE/WINTER 2010 comprises 13 performances in nine European cities: Barcelona, Zaragoza, and Madrid, all in Spain; Zurich, Switzerland; Frankfurt, Cologne, and Dortmund (the Orchestra’s debut there) in Germany; Paris, France; and London, England. Joining Gilbert and the orchestra on tour are soloists whose recent performances with them in New York were lavishly praised: pianist Yefim Bronfman, who will reprise Prokofiev’s devilishly difficult Piano Concerto No. 2, and baritone Thomas Hampson, the Philharmonic’s Mary and James G. Wallach Artist-in-Residence, who will once again sing John Adams’s heart-wrenching Whitman setting, The Wound-Dresser. Also on the tour programs are the European premieres of Magnus Lindberg’s EXPO, commissioned by th…

Cleveland Orchestra negotiations reach tentative agreement

The Musicians’ Union and Management of The Cleveland Orchestra reached a tentative agreement early this morning for a new three-year contract through September 2, 2012. The agreement calls for a two-year wage freeze through August 2011, followed by semi-annual wage increases of 3% and 2% in the subsequent year. In addition, the Musicians will donate up to 10 services, which will provide cost relief and additional revenue for the Musical Arts Association. Musicians will increase their medical premium contribution beginning in July 2011. The agreement was announced by the Musicians’ Committee Chairman, Jeffrey Rathbun, and the Orchestra’s Executive Director, Gary Hanson. Mr. Rathbun said, “We are very happy that management has heard our message and agreed not to further erode our base compensation allowing us to stay as competitive as possible with the marketplace. We look forward to working together to build our base of support and continue our tradition of excellence…

San Francisco Opera announces Casting and Season

Ten Productions Including Cyrano de Bergerac with Plácido DomingoSan Francisco Opera General Director David Gockley today announced repertory and casting for the Company’s 88th season to begin Friday, September 10 with Music Director Nicola Luisotti leading a gala opening performance of Giuseppe Verdi’s grand Egyptian opera, Aida. Highlights of the 2010–11 Season include the return of legendary tenor Plácido Domingo in the title role of Franco Alfano’s Cyrano de Bergerac and Karita Mattila’s role debut as Emilia Marty in Leoš Janáček’s The Makropulos Case. The season will culminate with three complete cycles of Richard Wagner’s magnum opus for the lyric stage, Der Ring des Nibelungen (The Ring of the Nibelung), as conceived by director Francesca Zambello and conducted by Donald Runnicles. Sixty-six performances of ten opera productions—seven of which are new to San Francisco audiences—are planned for the 2010–11 Season, bringing internationally renowned opera singers, conductors and …

Grammy Award-winning new music sextet eighth blackbird takes Steve Mackey’s Slide on tour

brings Steve Reich’s Pulitzer-winning Double Sextet to Philadelphia and L.AHighlights of eighth blackbird’s spring 2010 line-up include Rinde Eckert and Steve Mackey’s new music-theater piece Slide, which the sextet premiered last summer and to which it now devotes a three-city U.S. tour (March 3 – April 10). The group’s spring programs also showcase Steve Reich’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Double Sextet in performances at Philadelphia’s Curtis Institute (Feb 24), the L.A. County Museum of Art (April 28), and the ensemble’s Winnipeg and Minneapolis debuts (Feb 11 and May 1, respectively). Both works, like Carlos Sánchez-Gutiérez’s new composition, Five Memos, that the Grammy-winning group will premiere at New York’s Look & Listen Festival (May 7), were commissioned by and written especially for eighth blackbird. For its L.A. gig, the sextet will also reprise its recently-premiered new production of Schoenberg’s expressionist masterpiece Pierrot lunaire. With frequent performances …

EMI Classics Signs Chinese Pianist Yundi

First Release Is the Complete Chopin Nocturnes “Yundi Li, the brilliant young Chinese pianist…has proved a technically astounding pianist who is by turns elegant and rambunctious, coolly expressive and white hot.” — The New York TimesEMI Classics has signed the “superlative young Chinese pianist”* Yundi, formerly known as Yundi Li, winner of the 14th International Frederic Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw. Appropriately, Yundi’s first EMI release (due out in the U.S. on April 6) will be the complete Chopin nocturnes, issued to commemorate the composer’s 200th birthday in 2010. Together Yundi and EMI Classics plan to record Chopin’s complete works for solo piano. Stephen Johns, Vice President, A&R, EMI Classics, said: "We are extremely pleased to be welcoming Yundi to the EMI Classics label. Yundi's musicianship and artistry have already captivated audiences around the world, and his desire continually to seek new challenges mirrors our own ambitions to bring great mus…

Miraculous Logic: The Music of Jean Sibelius and the London Philharmonic Orchestra January 27th

The London Philharmonic Orchestra presents a complete cycle of Sibelius's symphonies set amongst some of his lesser known works. Osmo Vanska, one of the world's leading interpreters of Sibelius's music and a regular collaborator with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, curates a four-concert cycle of the composer's symphonies. Osmo is joined by one of Finland's best-kept vocal secrets Helena Juntunen, whose deliveries exude a radiance and Nordic charm all of their own and rising Norwegian star Henning Kraggerud in the opening concert for Sibelius's Six Humoresques. The festival also allows the Orchestra's Principal Cellist Kristina Blaumane an opportunity to demonstrate her fine skills as soloist in Sibelius's Cantique and Devotion for cello and orchestra. Wednesday 27 January - Friday 5 February
Royal Festival Hall

TONIGHT: Live from Lincoln Center's "Joshua Bell with Friends @ the Penthouse"

At Home With Friends CD comes to Live on PBSJoshua will perform duets with Sting, Renee Fleming, Regina Spektor, Tiempo Libre, Chris Botti, Jane Monheit, Marvin Hamlisch, Nathan Gunn, Frankie Moreno, Carel Kraayenhof and more!For local listings, please visit: www.pdb.org.

Cypress Quartet announces new album - Elena Ruehr's How She Danced - available Feb 23

Image
“music with heart and...a forceful sense of character and expression” – The Washington PostThe Cypress String Quartet (Cecily Ward, violin; Tom Stone, violin; Ethan Filner, viola; and Jennifer Kloetzel, cello) announces the commercial release of How She Danced: String Quartets of Elena Ruehr on Tuesday, February 23, 2010. The album, which includes Elena Ruehr’s String Quartets No. 1 (1991), No. 3 (2001), and No. 4 (commissioned by the Cypress Quartet in 2005), will be available on iTunes, CDBaby.com, Amazon.com, and other major retailers. The disc was produced by Cypress first violinist Cecily Ward and Mark Willsher, and recorded at Skywalker Sound. The album’s release coincides with the world premiere of another string quartet commissioned by the Cypress Quartet from Ms. Ruehr, which is based on Ann Patchett’s novel Bel Canto. The premiere performance will take place on Friday, February 26 at 8pm at Herbst Theatre (401 Van Ness Avenue, San Francisco, CA). A second performance wil…

Conductor Günther Herbig to Replace Jiří Bělohlávek for BSO Concerts, Jan. 22-24

First half of program remains unchanged;
Schumann’s Symphony No. 4 replaces Dvořák’s Othello Overture and Janáček’s Taras BulbaDue to back injuries sustained in an accident over the holiday season, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra regrets to announce that Jiří Bělohlávek has cancelled his upcoming engagement to conduct the BSO and pianist Garrick Ohlsson in the January 22-24, 2010 concerts. In his place, the BSO is pleased to welcome back internationally acclaimed German conductor Günther Herbig. Maestro Herbig is a frequent collaborator with the Baltimore Symphony, having conducted the Orchestra more than 20 times over the past 20 years, most recently leading Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony in June 2009. The first half of the program will remain unchanged, featuring Beethoven’s Coriolan Overture and the distinguished pianist Garrick Ohlsson performing Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3. In the program’s second half, Schumann’s Symphony No. 4 will replace the previously scheduled Dvořák…

Pianist Inon Barnatan touring NYC

This month pianist Inon Barnatan is making appearances at several different NYC venues. This weekend he is sharing an evening downtown with the Amsterdam-based electronic pop duo Controllar at the multimedia art café Le Poisson Rouge in Greenwich Village. The program fuses poetry of T.S. Eliot, Samuel Coleridge and others with music of Dowland, Ravel, Thomas Adès and Gregory Spears. Mendelssohn is the main event for Barnatan's January 23 concert uptown with the Shanghai Quartet at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Seeking Mendelssohn: Lost Works & Found Treasures" will showcase rarities by the 200-year-old composer. Barnatan will play the world premiere of a rare edition of Songs without Words, Op. 19, No. 2 - a Mendelssohn autograph from Horowitz's personal library, as well as two other U.S. premieres. WQXR's Elliott Forrest hosts a pre-concert panel discussion. Upcoming highlights for the 2009 Avery Fisher Career Grant winner include a solo recital at…

Mark O'Connor's Hot Swing Hits The Road

O'Connor To Join Kennedy Center's Grappelli and Reinhardt Tribute Jan. 16Composer and virtuoso violinist Mark O'Connor has announced the live return of his critically acclaimed band Mark O'Connor's Hot Swing -- O'Connor's tribute to friend and mentor Stephane Grappelli -- with a January tour. On January 16, Mark O'Connor's Hot Swing will perform as part of the Kennedy Center's 102nd anniversary of the birth of violinist Stephane Grappelli. The concert will close with a rousing finale featuring O'Connor's Hot Swing with his powerhouse duo of guitarists Frank Vignola and Julian Lage, along with French guitarist Dorado Schmitt of the Django Reinhardt Festival. Together, the groups will recreate the 1930's heyday of Reinhardt and Grappelli's Quintet of the Hot Club of France. The group will then tape a live session of Mountain Stage in Morgantown, WV on January 17. The Chicago Sun-Times raved that Hot Swing brings "this infec…

Love Themes: Kelley O'Connor Sings Lieberson's Neruda Songs

Making her Colorado Symphony Orchestra debut, mezzo-soprano Kelley O'Connor sings Peter Lieberson's Neruda Songs, based on love poems written by Pablo Neruda. Composed for his wife, the sensational mezzo-soprano Lorraine Hunt Lieberson, Peter Lieberson chose O'Connnor as his wife's successor in performing this work. Also on the program, Maestro Kahane conducts Berlioz's Overture to Beatrice and Benedict and "Love Scene" from Romeo and Juliet, as well as Tchaikovsky's Romeo and Juliet Overture. Tchaikovsky, Berlioz and Lieberson
CSO Masterworks
Fri-Sun | Jan 15-17
Jeffrey Kahane, music director
Kelley O'Connor, mezzo-soprano

BERLIOZ Overture to Beatrice and Benedict
PETER LIEBERSON Neruda Songs
BERLIOZ "Love Scene" from Romeo and Juliet
TCHAIKOVSKY Romeo and Juliet Overture

WQXR Classical 105.9 FM Ranks #1 in Weekly Audience Among Public Radio Stations in the December Arbitron Book

WQXR Named New York Philharmonic Radio Home for 2010/2011 Season WQXR Classical 105.9 FM, New York City ’s sole dedicated classical music station, ranked the highest cumulative audience among public radio stations in the December Arbitron ratings book, with 842,200 weekly listeners. The second-ranking public radio station in the December book had 833,400 weekly listeners. WQXR achieved this milestone in only its second full month as a public radio station. In October 2009, WNYC Radio acquired WQXR from The New York Times Company as part of a three-way deal with Univision, which entailed moving the WQXR signal from its longtime home at 96.3 FM to 105.9 FM. WQXR’s December ratings are comparable to those the station enjoyed as a commercial station. WQXR has also announced a sponsorship agreement with the New York Philharmonic which names WQXR as the Radio Home for the New York Philharmonic for the 2010/2011 season. The New York Philharmonic will actively promote WQXR’s broadcast of …

Matt Haimovitz enters the new decade with an wide array of performances - from Elliot Carter to Victor Herbert, and from Shostakovich to Mark O’Connor

Matt Haimovitz brings his FIGMENT program for solo cello to the west coast with performances in Seattle, Portland and Eugene (Jan 20-22), based on his newest CD, which has been called “spellbinding” (Time Out Chicago), “a sound voyage that constantly surprises with its sonic landscapes and its playfulness ... monstrously inventive” (Valley Advocate) and was one of the Boston Herald’s Top Ten CDs of the 2009. The West Coast Figment dates will also integrate the groundbreaking Seven Ricercare for Violoncello Solo by Domenico Gabrielli (1651-1690). These precursors to the Bach Cello Suites will be interwoven with the modern works by Elliott Carter, Ana Sokolovic, Luna Pearl Woolf, Gilles Tremblay and Steven Stucky. Haimovitz returns to New York to celebrate the 150th birthday of popular composer Victor Herbert with the Little Orchestra Society on February 1 at Alice Tully Hall. He performs Herbert’s Cello Concerto No.2. The next day, Matt Haimovitz arrives in Cleveland where he is fea…

Spoleto Festival USA Announces 2010 Program to Be Held May 28 – June 13 in Charleston , SC

Reopening of the restored Dock Street Theatre with a Spoleto production of Flora, an Opera, the first opera ever performed in the American coloniesNigel Redden, General Director, today announced the 2010 Spoleto Festival USA season, an expansive program showcasing internationally and nationally acclaimed artists in approximately 45 productions. Held annually in historic Charleston , South Carolina, the 34th festival runs from May 28 through June 13 and features numerous U.S. and festival debuts and the return of several audience favorites along with the reopening of the newly restored Dock Street Theatre, Charleston’s most beloved theatrical space. After a meticulous three-year restoration, the Dock Street Theatre reopens with a series of high-profile events including a new production of Flora, an Opera, an 18th-century English ballad opera with a deep connection to Charleston . Delightfully enchanting yet shrewdly satirical, Flora was the first opera ever performed in the American …