MUSIC / Don't hit the delete button yet: Independent music writers raid their memories for the best events of 1993 in concert and on stage

ROBERT COWAN

OCTOBER octogenarian Shura Cherkassky reigned supreme at the Wigmore Hall. To hear him chart the noble course of Rameau's Gavotte with Variations, excite Liszt's well-worn Second Rhapsody into a cloud of musical paprika, or trace the subtle rhythmic thread of a Chopin Mazurka, reminded us of a time when musical personalities ruled the airwaves. But best of all were the encores: Tchaikovsky's heart-rending evocation of October and a keyboard realisation of Saint-Saens' The Swan that was as flowing and graceful as the bird itself. The audience applauded long and lovingly while, as the song says, the memory lingered on.

ANDREW GREEN

A LITTLE-TRUMPETED London debut by the Moscow-based Ensemble XXI in February put our own musical financial worries in perspective. Members of this cosmopolitan chamber orchestra put money and mouth in closest proximity by committing themselves to living and working within the Russian rouble economy. They can play a bit, too. Equally heartwarming, a bumper Leonard Bernstein 'birthday' concert at the Schleswig-Holstein Festival raised funds for, and gave a European profile to, Classical Action, a New York organisation founded this year to raise megabucks within classical music for Aids sufferers. Its creator, Charles Hamlen, surrendered one of the top jobs in US music management to follow his vision.

TESS KNIGHTON

MY musical event of this Monteverdi anniversary year was undoubtedly the production of L'Incoronazione di Poppea at Bologna. During the year I heard Mark Tucker give a marvellously human account of Orfeo, and Anne Sofie von Otter a brilliantly compelling interpretation of Octavia, but as an unrivalled experience of music theatre the Bologna Poppea (produced by Graham Vick, with an almost all-Italian cast and an Anglo-American continuo team directed by . . . my husband Ivor Bolton) was it. You might say I'm biased - I couldn't possible comment.

ROBERT MAYCOCK

TWO dates, one surprise. Enrique Diemecke and the Royal Philharmonic turned an empty September night at the Barbican to blazing Mexican intensity with showstoppers by Silvestre Revueltas and Jose Pablo Moncayo (Bernstein with a double helping of chilli). Many more people shared the anticipation for November's QEH visit by Ustad Bismillah Khan, the veteran virtuoso who took the rustic, reedy tones of the shehnai to the rarefied world of the classical Indian recital. He doesn't have the flexibility of old, but with half-a-dozen ferociously concentrating fellow musicians, the improvising duly soared and seared its way into a thousand memories.

BAYAN NORTHCOTT

NO operatic or concert event of 1993 has haunted this pair of ears quite like the ingeniously planned, four-evening retrospective Radio 3 mounted last May of the turbulent happenings of 1968. Simple nostalgia one could hardly feel for political events and artistic manifestations that were in many ways naive or self-deluding. Yet to listen again to archival clips and taped performances of the time was to be reminded how much the pursuit of the new and uncompromising in music could still mean only 25 years ago - before the values of universal consumerism began to bury all.

MEREDITH OAKES

THE delete button has worked remarkably well on my concert recollections this year. London's classical-music-on-a-plate is seldom remembered as nourishing. But the Wynton Marsalis late-night Prom of 19 August stays with me: I didn't want to watch TV, I was tired, but I couldn't tear myself away from those long, constantly shocking and surprising, virtuoso jazz meditations on the life and music of the American South. Soon I wasn't tired at all.

ANTHONY PAYNE

TEN days ago, with the Arts Council trouble at its height, the Philharmonia gave a performance of Tchaikovsky's Sixth Symphony under Yevgeny Svetlanov at the Festival Hall which achieved true catharsis. I will long remember the emotional power and instrumental virtuosity of the playing and Svetlanov's revelation of the layers of meaning in Tchaikovsky's inspired first-movement structure. Individual incidents were characterised with the utmost dramatic intensity, yet all were forged into a cogent symphonic span - an interpretation searingly worthy of one of the 19th-century's most courageous artistic statements.

JAN SMACZNY

ANY staging of Rameau is worth a cheer. City of Birmingham Touring Opera's way with Les Boreades didn't please everybody, but Graham Vick matched the composer's vision with a consistency that allowed the score to work its magic for most of a modern audience. Rampant authenticists hated it; my only problem was with some of the singing. Bold, as Julian and Sandy might have said.

NICHOLAS WILLIAMS

FAVOURITE image: two metronomes placed either side of piano- duo team of Thorson and Thurber at their November ICA recital; the piece, Laszlo Vidovszky's canonic Pastime, a stern 20th-century parable about wasted musical durations. The metronomes never ticked, never moved. Were things meant this way, or had someone forgotten to switch them on?

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
Israeli-born actress Gal Gadot has been cast to play Wonder Woman
film
News
Top Gear presenter James May appears to be struggling with his new-found free time
people
Arts and Entertainment
Kendrick Lamar at the Made in America Festival in Los Angeles last summer
music
Arts and Entertainment
'Marley & Me' with Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson
film
Arts and Entertainment
Jon Hamm (right) and John Slattery in the final series of Mad Men
tv
Arts and Entertainment
theatre
Arts and Entertainment
Place Blanche, Paris, 1961, shot by Christer Strömholm
photographyHow the famous camera transformed photography for ever
Arts and Entertainment
The ‘Westmacott Athlete’
art
Arts and Entertainment
‘The Royals’ – a ‘twisted, soapy take on England’s first family’
tv Some of the characters appear to have clear real-life counterparts
News
Brooks is among a dozen show-business professionals ever to have achieved Egot status
people
Arts and Entertainment
A cut above: Sean Penn is outclassed by Mark Rylance in The Gunman
film review
Arts and Entertainment
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
James Franco and Zachary Quinto in I Am Michael

Film review Michael Glatze biopic isn't about a self-hating gay man gone straight

Arts and Entertainment
A scene from the movie 'Get Hard'
tvWill Ferrell’s new film Get Hard receives its first reviews
Arts and Entertainment
Left to right: David Cameron (Mark Dexter), Nick Clegg (Bertie Carvel) and Gordon Brown (Ian Grieve)
tvReview: Ian Grieve gets another chance to play Gordon Brown... this is the kinder version
Arts and Entertainment
Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman in the first look picture from next year's Sherlock special

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Because it wouldn’t be Glastonbury without people kicking off about the headline acts, a petition has already been launched to stop Kanye West performing on the Saturday night

music
Arts and Entertainment
Molly Risker, Helen Monks, Caden-Ellis Wall, Rebekah Staton, Erin Freeman, Philip Jackson and Alexa Davies in ‘Raised by Wolves’

TV review
Arts and Entertainment

TV
Arts and Entertainment
James May, Jeremy Clarkson and Richard Hammond in the Top Gear Patagonia Special

TV
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    No postcode? No vote

    Floating voters

    How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
    Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

    By Reason of Insanity

    Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
    Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

    Power dressing is back

    But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
    Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

    Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

    Caves were re-opened to the public
    'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

    Vince Cable interview

    'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
    Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

    Promises, promises

    But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
    The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

    The death of a Gaza fisherman

    He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
    Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

    Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

    Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
    Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

    The only direction Zayn could go

    We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
    Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

    Spells like teen spirit

    A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
    Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

    If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

    British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
    Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

    Licence to offend in the land of the free

    Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
    From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

    From farm to fork in Cornwall

    One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
    Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

    Robert Parker interview

    The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
    Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

    Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

    We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor