• Mozart Celebrated in New York

    Festival Fifty Years Young

    By: Susan Hall - Jul 26th, 2016

    The Mostly Mozart Festival is fifty years young. To celebrate the occasion, Lincoln Center put on The Illuminated Heart at David Geffen Hall. Singers were the A list of opera. It was like degustation at Sur Mesure. Like the All Star game, you wondered if another operatic music event could be going on anywhere. Seems like everyone who was anyone was on stage.

  • Brian Wilson plays Pet Sounds at Tanglewood on Sunday, June 19th

    The 50th Anniversary

    By: Philip S. Kampe - Jun 15th, 2016

    Brian Wilson will perform for the first time at Koussevitzky Hall on the grounds of Tanglewood on Sunday, June 19th at 2:30pm

  • What's Next for Hamilton Winners

    From Broadway Sensation to Years on the Road

    By: Charles Giuliano - Jun 14th, 2016

    At about $150 each my pal and BFA contributor, Jack Lyons, managed to get a few "cheap seats" for the Broadway smash Hamilton. We even got to go back stage and chat with now Tony winner Leslie Odom, Jr. Back in November I asked him "what's next." It was a bit premature but all of the original contracts expire this summer. Its creator and star, Lin-Manuel Miranda, has already announced plans to leave. The show will continue indefinitly on Broadway while several touring companies are launched.

  • Tanglewood Opens With Dolly Parton

    Jolene in the Berkshires on June 17

    By: Philip S. Kampe - Jun 11th, 2016

    Legendary country star, Dolly Parton, makes her Tanglewood debut on June 17th at 7pm in the Koussevitzky Music Shed.

  • Former WBCN DJ Mark Parenteau at 66

    Last Years Marred by Scandal and Illness

    By: Charles Giuliano - Jun 09th, 2016

    During a golden age when WBCN was the Rock of Boston Mark Perenteau was a larger than life presence. A mega watt presence was the catalyst for both fame and fortune as well as scandal and demise. He died from complications following surgery at 66.

  • Hershey Felder Gives Us Irving Berlin

    Felder a Masterful Man for All Seasons

    By: Susan Hall - Jun 08th, 2016

    Hershey Felder has made a career of creating the great musicians of the past three centuries. His Irving Berlin is touching, witty and very American.

  • Helmut Lachenmann's The Little Match Girl

    Cutting Edge Opera at Spoleto Festival in Charleston

    By: Sandy Katz - Jun 07th, 2016

    Cramped into nose bleed seats it was excruciating to endure the experimental opera The Little Match Girl by Helmut Lachenmann. It was a presentation of the prestigious annual Spoleto Festival USA which is currently enjoying its 40th season in Charleston, South Carolina.

  • Alan Gilbert Untempered at the Met Museum

    Pekka Kuusisto and Alan Gilbert Groove on Ligeti

    By: Susan Hall - Jun 05th, 2016

    Pekka Kuusisto took on the challenging Ligeti violin concerto with gusto, humor, and a quiet modesty. This was an unusual, and unusually effective combination of qualities, especially in view of the pick he took to the violin to make it into a guitar, and his beautiful whistling. David Fulmer conducted like a poet of music. John Zorn in the audience appreciated the performance of his work by the Mivos Quartet. It was another brilliant program put on by Alan Gilbert, who credits cellist Jay Chambers with suggesting Ligeti and his influence.

  • Gerald Barry's The Importance of Being Earnest

    Opera at Lincoln Center's Great Performers

    By: Susan Hall - Jun 04th, 2016

    It's observed that great operas are often based on weak plays. Not so the new opera by Gerald Barry. While Barry cut about two-thirds of Oscar Wilde's perfect play, the spirit remains. The result is more like composers taking up Beaumarchais than Johm Luther Long..

  • Annual Piccolo Spoleto Festival

    Fever Was Red Hot in Charleston

    By: Sandy Katz - Jun 03rd, 2016

    Piccolo Spoleto Festival is officially the outreach arm of Spoleto Festival USA in Charleston, South Carolina. This year marks the fortieth anniversary of Spoleto Festival USA, and thirty-eighth year of Piccolo Spoleto.

  • Yannick Nézet-Séguin Appointed by Met Opera

    Questions Remain about Gelb's Control

    By: Susan Hall - Jun 02nd, 2016

    Nézet-Séguin, the music director of the Philadelphia Orchestra where he will continue, assumes the role at the Met Opera in the 2020-21 season. He is a wonderful conductor of opera. What remains to be seen is Peter Gelb's role as "artistic director" of the opera company. Many first-rate conductors have not accepted the role because Gelb has insisted on control. The Board may not allow Gelb to continue to assert himself in artistic matters.

  • Marsalis Marches and Gilbert Honors with Brahms

    A Dirge for Kurt Mazur

    By: Susan Hall - May 31st, 2016

    The annual New York Philharmonic concert at St. John the Divine in New York was started a quarter century ago just as Kurt Mazur took the helm of the orchestra. The conductor was honored today in a wonderful New Orleans Funeral March led down the long aisle of the Cathedral by Wynton Marsalis and also a performance of Brahms' Second Symphony led by Alan Gilbert.

  • Robertson Leads Majestic NYPHil

    Alan Baer, Tuba, Superb in John Wiliams

    By: Susan Hall - May 29th, 2016

    Music of all genres and spirits is overflowing the halls of David Geffen Hall and embracing the citizens of New York. Gustav Holst's The Planets brought amateur astronomers to Lincoln Center's Plaza for a viewing of Jupiter and its moons after we had heard the composer's interpretation. Wow!

  • The Met Orchestra at Carnegie

    Christine Goerke Is the Go-To Soprano

    By: Susan Hall - May 26th, 2016

    James Levine is gloriously winding down his tenure as Music Director of the Metropolitan Opera. The man who brought us the full Ring Cycle at the Metropolitan Opera may have aged, but he is blossoming still and the stage of Carnegie Hall is the perfect venue to display his monumental talents.

  • Sondheim on Sondheim as Putting It Together

    Stage Door Theatre in South Florida

    By: Aaron Krause - May 24th, 2016

    Unlike in another Sondheim revue, “Side by Side by Sondheim,” has no narrator to link the songs. Rather, a dramatic framework exists in which two couples are attending a cocktail party at an upscale residence. This allows the characters to sing nearly 30 Sondheim songs outside the context for which he composed/or wrote the lyrics.

  • World Premiere Noir Musical Thriller Hollywood

    By Tony Winners Joe Di Pietro and Christopher Ashley at La Jolla Playhouse

    By: Jack Lyons - May 23rd, 2016

    La Jolla Playhouse has the best track record of any West Coast theatre when it comes to sending their original theatrical productions to Broadway (over 30 of them to date). Their 2008 musical production “Memphis”, written by Joe Di Pietro and directed by Christopher Ashley went on to Broadway winning a 2010 Tony Award for Best Musical. “Hollywood”, again written by Di Pietro, and helmed by Ashley, is looking to pull off a Tony Award-winning ‘Daily Double’ coup.

  • Dollywood Comes to Tanglewood

    Dolly Parton Debuts at Tanglewood

    By: Philip S. Kampe - Jun 19th, 2016

    Dolly Parton brought her act to Koussevitzky Hall on June 17th. And what an act it was.

  • Brian Wilson Plays 'Pet Sounds'

    50 Years After Its Release

    By: Philip S. Kampe - Jun 20th, 2016

    Fifty years after the release of 'Pet Sounds', Brian Wilson and his band played the album in its entirety. The music sizzled during a scorching afternoon at Tanglewood.

  • Madama Butterfly at Hubbard Hall

    Saying Goodbye to Hubbard Hall Opera Theater's Founding Artistic Director

    Cosi fan tutte
    By: Thomas Dyer - Jul 26th, 2016

    Artistic Director of Hubbard Hall Opera Theater, Alix Jones, talks to us about how small-scale opera started at Hubbard Hall, why is succeeded, and where it might go next.

  • Leon Botstein Makes the Case for Mascagni

    Iris Beautifully Sung at Bard Summer Festival

    By: Susan Hall and Djurdjija Vucinic - Jul 25th, 2016

    Leon Botstein, music impresario of the first order, declared that if Mascagni’s opera Iris was good enough for Toscanini, it was good enough for him. Many of us feel that if it’s good enough for Botstein, it’s good enough for us. The music is gorgeous. Botstein hears Wagner. We heard Puccini. The descending fifth leap from Tosca started many a phrase. Yet it was Mascagni that preceded Puccini.

  • Reich Reverberates at Lincoln Center

    Ensemble Signal and Jack Quartet Capture the Spirit

    By: Susan Hall - Jul 20th, 2016

    In his 80th birthday year, Reich is being celebrated by Tilson Thomas in San Francisco and in a train station outside London in September. He is in New York now with multiple concerts as part of the Lincoln Center Festival. We are fortunate indeed for this native New Yorker.

  • Drumming by Steve Reich

    So Percussion at Lincoln Center

    By: Susan Hall - Jul 17th, 2016

    Bathed in blue light, the stage could be anywhere, in the heart of Africa or New York CIty. Steve Reich, one of the titans of modern music, captured mainstream attention with Drumming. Now everyone loves the iconic piece. Lincoln Center offers it and other works of Reich in their summer festival.

  • Kanze Noh's Inaugural at Lincoln Center

    Traditional Japanese Theater Intrigues

    By: Susan Hall - Jul 16th, 2016

    Even if you don't know the conventions of Noh Theater, developed over 600 years in Japan, there is great pleasure in its performance. The Kanze Noh troupe sports players whose descent can be traced back 22 generations. Deep emotions are generated by performances of dramas from this rich history.

  • The Knights Serenade Tanglewood

    The Times They Are A-Changin

    By: Philip S. Kampe - Jul 16th, 2016

    The Knights, a Brooklyn based chamber music band, play music from numerous genres and somehow unite the opposing styles into a wonderful evening of entertainment. From Hadyn to Dylan, with a little Schubert thrown in for good measure, The Knights journey begins.

  • Qian Yi Transforming in Paradise Interrupted

    Lincoln Center Festival Opens

    By: Susan Hall - Jul 14th, 2016

    Composer Huang Ruo talks about dimensionalism. You don't have to understand what the term means to get totally caught up in new dimensions in his opera Paradise Interrupted which opens the Lincoln Center Festival. Ruo's music, and Jennifer Ma's libretto based on the Biblical story of the Garden of Eden are enmeshed in The Peony Pavilion, a truncated version of the 16th century Chinese Opera. The original lasted 22 hours and has been performed by Qian Yi, a force of nature who weaves the song of the central character in the new opera.

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