Search found 20990 matches

by John F
Wed Nov 20, 2019 9:18 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: The Best of Philip Glass’s (Many) Operas After ‘Akhnaten’
Replies: 1
Views: 18

Re: The Best of Philip Glass’s (Many) Operas After ‘Akhnaten’

There's something uncanny about Glass's extraordinary productivity. Partly it may be due to the harmonic simplicity and extreme repetitiveness of his minimalist style; obviously it takes less tme to write a phrase and repeat it literally 100 times than to compose 100 bars of complex developing music...
by John F
Tue Nov 19, 2019 5:57 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: What happened to the Bryn Terfel post?
Replies: 9
Views: 87

Re: What happened to the Bryn Terfel post?

In the old days, singers like Galli-Curci and Caruso did indeed sing arias and popular songs in the same program, in whatever order they chose. The concert would often also include selections by "assisting artists" (solo violinists etc.) in between the star's numbers. It was the star performers rath...
by John F
Tue Nov 19, 2019 2:52 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: The Chicago Symphony brass
Replies: 4
Views: 67

The Chicago Symphony brass

The Chicago Symphony’s Brass Is World-Famous. Hear It Blast. By Michael Cooper Nov. 18, 2019 EXp3wIDyOas https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EXp3wIDyOas What distinguishes one top-rank orchestra from another? For the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, it’s long been the brass. For decades, the “Chicago brass” ...
by John F
Tue Nov 19, 2019 2:13 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: What happened to the Bryn Terfel post?
Replies: 9
Views: 87

Re: What happened to the Bryn Terfel post?

Any number of classical singers have sung Broadway songs as encores, and sometimes as part of the man program. José van Dam sang "Some enchanted evening";Thomas Quasthoff, "I did it my way." And this is nothing new. Great singers of the past sang ballads etc. in their concerts, and Caruso sang Georg...
by John F
Tue Nov 19, 2019 5:47 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: At the Boston Symphony, Andris Nelsons Still Seeks an Identity
Replies: 8
Views: 185

Re: At the Boston Symphony, Andris Nelsons Still Seeks an Identity

The Boston Symphony audience was always notoriously conservative. Around 1900, when Symphony Hall was being built, one local critic suggested that the signs over the emergency exits should read" "Exit in case of Brahms." The BSO's audience may have been that conservative a century ago, but under th...
by John F
Tue Nov 19, 2019 5:03 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: What happened to the Bryn Terfel post?
Replies: 9
Views: 87

Re: What happened to the Bryn Terfel post?

Bryn Terfel has always been ready and willing to do that kind of thing if the money etc. were good enough. In the past he's done so much of it that he failed to learn major operatic roles he had contracted to sing. He was to have made a role debut as Wozzeck at the Salzburg Festival back in the 1980...
by John F
Mon Nov 18, 2019 5:08 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: New Alkan piano cd
Replies: 2
Views: 60

Re: New Alkan piano cd

Whether or not a pianist has recorded both pieces does not show whether he plays them, or can play them. Johnn Ogdon, for example, could doubtless have played the symphony if he wanted to, and maybe he did. On the other hand, three of the five named pianists are unknown to me as they haven't perform...
by John F
Sun Nov 17, 2019 1:11 pm
Forum: CMG Review of Books
Topic: Beckett estate squashes Oberlin coeds' plan to conjure up Godot
Replies: 2
Views: 94

Re: Beckett estate squashes Oberlin coeds' plan to conjure up Godot

Doing "Godot" with a female cast does as much damage to the play as doing "Happy Days" with only men. Beckett knew the difference between men and women if the Oberlin theatre department didn't. It's doubtless unfortunate that especially in older plays, the number and importance of womens' roles is s...
by John F
Sun Nov 17, 2019 4:26 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: At the Boston Symphony, Andris Nelsons Still Seeks an Identity
Replies: 8
Views: 185

Re: At the Boston Symphony, Andris Nelsons Still Seeks an Identity

In effect, Allen is bored by Nelsons's conducting and the BSO's playing. Since I haven't heard either recently I have no opinion, but I don't believe this is the consensus in Boston. My friends up there don't agree.
by John F
Sat Nov 16, 2019 1:09 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Tonight's Madama Butterfly
Replies: 13
Views: 453

Re: Tonight's Madama Butterfly

You and I are talking about two different things. Leontyne Price, James King, Cheryl Studer, Claire Watson, Teresa Stich Randall, Evelyn Lear, and many others of that calibre did not "sing small parts for the MET." They sang principal roles in the opera houses of Germany, Austria, and elsewhere in E...
by John F
Fri Nov 15, 2019 6:06 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Why are Haydn’s operas so lousy?
Replies: 7
Views: 185

Re: Why are Haydn’s operas so lousy?

Sic transit gloria mundi: Paisiello's "Barber of Seville" was so popular that Rossinin was sharply criticized for daring to compose his own. And while Cimarosa's "Matrimnio Segreto" is seldom perormed today except occasionally in Italy, its popularity when new was such that the first revival of Moza...
by John F
Fri Nov 15, 2019 6:01 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Tonight's Madama Butterfly
Replies: 13
Views: 453

Re: Tonight's Madama Butterfly

Where do these singers go to grow and mature? Now, they must migrate to Europe, where opera culture flourishes. Which of course a great many American singers did during the 1950s and 1960s. Leontyne Price was singing Aida (1958) and Pamina (1959) in Vienna years before her Met debut in 1961. Some n...
by John F
Fri Nov 15, 2019 5:30 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Lang Lang plays LvB PC # 2 live
Replies: 8
Views: 320

Re: Lang Lang plays LvB PC # 2 live

Some may find a performer's body language annoying but really it's of no consequence. What counts is the sound that comes out of the instrument or the orchestra. Seems to me that your comments on Lang Lang's playing are on the mark. So what if Horowitz sat still when playing? Artur Rubinstein didn't...
by John F
Fri Nov 15, 2019 10:26 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Why are Haydn’s operas so lousy?
Replies: 7
Views: 185

Re: Why are Haydn’s operas so lousy?

Haydn was second to Mozart in his time. (Surely you can't believe I was placing him ahead of Wagner!) I've listened to quite a few operas by 18th century Italian composers such as Cimarosa and Paisiello, and Haydn certainly places ahead of them, don't you think?
by John F
Fri Nov 15, 2019 9:50 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Why are Haydn’s operas so lousy?
Replies: 7
Views: 185

Re: Why are Haydn’s operas so lousy?

Bratby surely didn't write the headline for his review, because he nowhere calls any of Haydn's operas "lousy," and indeed has high praise for parts of "La Fedelta Premiata." Unlike Mozart, Haydn wrote no operas for the commercial theatre and its popular audience - his job was to please Prince Ester...
by John F
Fri Nov 15, 2019 4:56 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Tonight's Madama Butterfly
Replies: 13
Views: 453

Re: Tonight's Madama Butterfly

where is the audience for opera? Companies like New York City Opera, New York Grand Opera, Eve Queler's Carnegie performances, DiCapo Opera, all have ceased to exist. The MET is the last standing Of course this is true only of New York City, which we New Yorkers sometimes provincially take to be th...
by John F
Fri Nov 15, 2019 4:39 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Stokowski Collectors for Discs from Cala/England
Replies: 7
Views: 255

Re: Stokowski Collectors for Discs from Cala/England

Some critics do not place Stokowski in the same league as a Toscanini or Furtwangler For most of his life Stokowski wasn't taken seriously by critics and record reviewers, partly because of his idiosyncratic interpretations of the standard repertoire, partly ( suspect because of his extraordinary p...
by John F
Fri Nov 15, 2019 3:47 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Lang Lang plays LvB PC # 2 live
Replies: 8
Views: 320

Re: Lang Lang plays LvB PC # 2 live

It's the 2nd concerto that William Kapell recorded for RCA Victor. I don't know that he played any of the others.
by John F
Thu Nov 14, 2019 8:27 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Tonight's Madama Butterfly
Replies: 13
Views: 453

Re: Tonight's Madama Butterfly

That may be, but you and Sue filled only two seats, and not the most expensive seats at that.
by John F
Thu Nov 14, 2019 8:08 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Tonight's Madama Butterfly
Replies: 13
Views: 453

Re: Tonight's Madama Butterfly

With an attractive cast, even the most hackneyed revival can fill the Met's many seats. It's the fans who need a reason to come. In 1988 Carlos Kleiber made his Met debut in "La Boheme" with Luciano Pavarotti and Mirella Freni in the leading roles. Not only did the house sell out for all five perfor...
by John F
Thu Nov 14, 2019 4:26 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Tonight's Madama Butterfly
Replies: 13
Views: 453

Re: Tonight's Madama Butterfly

That's the trouble with revivals of older productions of standard repertoire, with no star singers in the cast - tickets are hard to sell.
by John F
Wed Nov 13, 2019 9:09 am
Forum: CMG Review of Books
Topic: Drama Book Shop reopening
Replies: 0
Views: 194

Drama Book Shop reopening

New York's Drama Book Shop, an essential resource in the theatre district, lost its lease and has been looking for a new location. It appears that they've found it. Drama Book Shop Sets a Fresh Start in a New Locale By Michael Paulson Nov. 12, 2019 The Drama Book Shop has a new home. Lin-Manuel Mira...
by John F
Wed Nov 13, 2019 8:15 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Tonight's Akhnaten-One Met Lets Us Down-Another Met Succeeds
Replies: 6
Views: 369

Re: Tonight's Akhnaten-One Met Lets Us Down-Another Met Succeeds

I've always suspected that the most interesting thing about this opera is the idea, and sampling some of the music (Glass at his most minimal) hasn't increased my interest. Playing in the orchestra for this must take away the will to live. :mrgreen: Still, I guess I'll watch it on TV. Len says there...
by John F
Mon Nov 11, 2019 2:38 am
Forum: Corner Pub
Topic: My topic deleted.
Replies: 50
Views: 3391

Re: My topic deleted.

Gerrymandering goes back centuries and has been practiced by both political parties. Whichever party has a majority in a state's legislature at the time of the 10-year census gets to draw the boundaries of the election districts, and there's no law that dictates on what basis it to be done, so natur...
by John F
Sun Nov 10, 2019 4:59 pm
Forum: Corner Pub
Topic: Concorde
Replies: 12
Views: 1524

Re: Concorde

Kind of on topic: I remember a 1950s movie, now on YouTube, called "No Highway ni the Sky," based on a Neville Shute novel, that was about "incidents" happening to a new airplane. You might enjoy it. aRa4yey8Z2k https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aRa4yey8Z2k (The YouTube link I posted was to an incompl...
by John F
Sat Nov 09, 2019 11:48 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: New Schubert "Winterreise" cd
Replies: 20
Views: 1228

Re: New Schubert "Winterreise" cd

Lotte Lehmann sang many songs whose protagonist is clearly male, even Schumann's "Dichterliebe." She was certainly not a "butch" singer, few sopranos were more feminine, and wasn't making some kind of unisex point about the songs, she just thought they were great songs, and of course they were. I'm ...
by John F
Sat Nov 09, 2019 11:16 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Philip Glass Is Too Busy to Care About Legacy
Replies: 6
Views: 470

Re: Philip Glass Is Too Busy to Care About Legacy

This is very interesting in its own right, whether or not you care about Philip Glass's music. (I don't.)
by John F
Sat Nov 09, 2019 10:35 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: A Teenage Virtuoso Prevails in a Liszt Endurance Test
Replies: 1
Views: 239

Re: A Teenage Virtuoso Prevails in a Liszt Endurance Test

Sviatoslav Richter said that "Feux Follets" is the most difficult piano piece of all. This surprised me, as to my ear it doesn't sound harder than any number of other Liszt pieces such as "Gnomenreigen," and Richter's performance sounds effortless. o0abaVG2KWM https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o0abaVG...
by John F
Sat Nov 09, 2019 5:36 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: New Schubert "Winterreise" cd
Replies: 20
Views: 1228

Re: New Schubert "Winterreise" cd

I do mind "Winterreise" sung by a woman, even as communicative an artist as Lotte Lehmann. The story is about leaving a girl who is marrying for money, and makes no sense if the traveler is also a woman, implying some kind of lesbian relationship.
by John F
Sat Nov 09, 2019 5:31 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Raymond Lewenthal Set Arrived Today!
Replies: 17
Views: 1636

Re: Raymond Lewenthal Set Arrived Today!

Actually, such transpositions are required of accompanists all the time. Gerald Moore has a chapter on the subject in "The Unashamed Accompanist" : A good accompanist is expected to be adept at transposition. Frequently singers will ask him to put up or put down a song a half tone, a whole tone, or ...
by John F
Thu Nov 07, 2019 2:27 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Raymond Lewenthal Set Arrived Today!
Replies: 17
Views: 1636

Re: Raymond Lewenthal Set Arrived Today!

Grieg brought his piano concerto to Liszt who proceeded to play it at sght, solo and orchestral parts, to Grieg's amazement. Did any other musician have this extraordinary ability?.
by John F
Wed Nov 06, 2019 3:54 pm
Forum: Corner Pub
Topic: Concorde
Replies: 12
Views: 1524

Re: Concorde

The Concorde was profitable at the exorbitant price of a ticket, and overlooking the immense cost of building the thing, which was never recovered. As for its purported usefulness to budiness people, again, nobody's time is so valuable that savng three hours at a cost of$10,000 makes economic or bus...
by John F
Wed Nov 06, 2019 3:46 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: New Schubert "Winterreise" cd
Replies: 20
Views: 1228

Re: New Schubert "Winterreise" cd

In all, I believe Hotter made six recordings of "Winterreise." Not all were well advised; his last, recorded in Japan by CBS with Hans Dokupil, was just too late. But they show how closely Hotter identified with the cycle, which he performed in public more than 100 times. Most of the other accompani...
by John F
Wed Nov 06, 2019 10:01 am
Forum: Classical Concert Reviews
Topic: Mahler 5 plus a novelty
Replies: 2
Views: 748

Re: Mahler 5 plus a novelty

It's only recently, within a few decades, that a Mahler symphony (other than the 8th) has made up the whole of a concert program. When Bruno Walter conducted the 5th he always paired it with other music, such as Haydn's Symphony no. 88 or the Schumann piano concerto with Harold Bauer. I have the imp...
by John F
Wed Nov 06, 2019 6:30 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: World Opera Day
Replies: 2
Views: 616

Re: World Opera Day

Hey, every day is world opera day in most of the world. What would make this special is not provincial productions from Mumbai and Beijing. This is essentially a publicity project by organizations such as Opera America which produce no performances of their own. I note that the events of October 25 ...
by John F
Wed Nov 06, 2019 6:16 am
Forum: Corner Pub
Topic: Concorde
Replies: 12
Views: 1524

Re: Concorde

Whatever its esthetic appeal, the Concorde struck me from the beginning as needless, serving no important purpose. It reduced the flight time between London and New York by about 1/2, saving maybe 3 or 4 hours from the Boeing 747. To achieve this, passengers had to pay $8,000 one-way ($12,500 today)...
by John F
Tue Nov 05, 2019 6:06 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: New Schubert "Winterreise" cd
Replies: 20
Views: 1228

Re: New Schubert "Winterreise" cd

One thing about Gerald Moore's playing that others didn't have was that he went beyond the purely musical element in his part to bring out its meaning. As he says in "The Unashamed Accompanist," "The composer of a great song uses the piano part to paint pictures. He uses the piano part to evoke a mo...
by John F
Tue Nov 05, 2019 3:03 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: LPs are now outsellng CDs
Replies: 7
Views: 639

Re: LPs are now outsellng CDs

As usual, the article is entirely about non-classical recordings, which is where the money is. My guess would be that streaming services such as Spotify and YouTube get far more play in the classical repertoire than CDs, which in turn are likely to top LPs.
by John F
Tue Nov 05, 2019 2:59 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Richter at home, ca.1957
Replies: 5
Views: 509

Re: Richter at home, ca.1957

Most likely Richter (or whoever) wouldn't have started the tape recording unless he intended to give a full performance. Why else? It would be great to know more of the back story of these recordings.
by John F
Tue Nov 05, 2019 6:29 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: LPs are now outsellng CDs
Replies: 7
Views: 639

LPs are now outsellng CDs

Believe it or not. But pay streaming services such as Spotify are the best sellers. Gen Xers, millennials and even some Gen Zs choose vinyl & drive record sales upNovember 3, 2019 8.07am ESTMarina Eckersley Vinyl sales have been surging in the last few years, as CD sales stay flat and digital downlo...
by John F
Tue Nov 05, 2019 5:31 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: New Schubert "Winterreise" cd
Replies: 20
Views: 1228

Re: New Schubert "Winterreise" cd

You didn't ask me, but mine is the EMI recording by Hans Hotter and Gerald Moore.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3nIcu2YCUzA

A special one is the live performance in Berlin's Philharmonie by Thomas Quasthoff and Daniel Barenboim. Friends and I were lucky enough to attend it.
by John F
Mon Nov 04, 2019 10:56 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: New Schubert "Winterreise" cd
Replies: 20
Views: 1228

Re: New Schubert "Winterreise" cd

I've liked Peter Mattei's singing since I saw him in Peter Brook's production of "Don Giovanni," but I don't think he has what it takes for "Winterreise." Some of the singing is too hushed, some of it is forced. He might well sing a good "Schöne Müllerin," but not "Winterreise."
by John F
Mon Nov 04, 2019 4:56 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: A radio tribute to James Levine?
Replies: 16
Views: 1643

Re: A radio tribute to James Levine?

I want to pay tribute to one of the greatest performances of anything that I've heard and seen in an opera house. This was "Die Meistersinger" in 2001, actually a series of performances as after the first one I returned to see it three more times. It was telecast and I believe published on DVD, thou...
by John F
Mon Nov 04, 2019 3:49 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Richter at home, ca.1957
Replies: 5
Views: 509

Re: Richter at home, ca.1957

Extraordinary. He actually outdoes Rachmaninoff in the polonaise. Except for the false start in the Schubert, these don't sound like "rehearsals" but fully realized performances. On what occasion?
by John F
Mon Nov 04, 2019 8:51 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: He Left His 310-Year-Old Violin on a Train. He Retrieved It in a Parking Lot.
Replies: 1
Views: 375

Re: He Left His 310-Year-Old Violin on a Train. He Retrieved It in a Parking Lot.

From the recordng sessions named in the article, an antique violin is wasted on Stephen Morris. High quality violins are being made today for a fraction of the price. Isaac Stern owned two by Samuel Zygmuntowicz in addition to his Guarnerius, and other famous musicians have owned and recorded with Z...
by John F
Sat Nov 02, 2019 11:31 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Rolando Panerai, Renowned Baritone and Callas Collaborator, Dies at 95
Replies: 2
Views: 670

Re: Rolando Panerai, Renowned Baritone and Callas Collaborator, Dies at 95

Ford in "Falstaff" was indeed a signature role for Panerai, one in which I saw him several times. In Act 2 his scene with Falstaff and jealousy monologue were highlights of the performance, peaking with a dangerous "Vendichero l'affronto."
by John F
Fri Nov 01, 2019 4:24 am
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Mahler, Distilled by Classical Music’s Greatest Duo
Replies: 4
Views: 701

Re: Mahler, Distilled by Classical Music’s Greatest Duo

Were you at the recital John, and unimpressed? I find that sad and worrying (I respect your views) as Gerhaher has always impressed me hugely when I have heard him live. I last heard him earlier this year as Figaro at Covent Garden. I've heard Gerhaher, though not in this repertoire, but haven't he...
by John F
Thu Oct 31, 2019 3:28 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: Mahler, Distilled by Classical Music’s Greatest Duo
Replies: 4
Views: 701

Re: Mahler, Distilled by Classical Music’s Greatest Duo

Joshua Barone wrote:Classical Music’s Greatest Duo
Hardly. More hype from the Times.
by John F
Wed Oct 30, 2019 12:01 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: A radio tribute to James Levine?
Replies: 16
Views: 1643

Re: A radio tribute to James Levine?

Not least because, typically of Levine, he gets the Bayreuth Festival orchestra to play better than most conductors can.
by John F
Tue Oct 29, 2019 9:27 pm
Forum: Classical Music Chatterbox
Topic: One of Opera’s Great Directors, Binge-Worthy in Berlin
Replies: 2
Views: 678

Re: One of Opera’s Great Directors, Binge-Worthy in Berlin

First Julia Bullock is proclaimed as the diva we've been waiting for, now "Barrie Kosky, one of opera's great directors, may be the most interesting opera director of the past decade." These days the Times seems to be printing publicity rather than criticism.