Last autumn Helene Grimaud released a fine recording of Brahms’ piano concertos under the baton of Andris Nelsons: to hear them perform the second concerto live with the Philharmonia Orchestra was to realise anew what a superb symbiosis they can achieve.
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Saturday 22 June 2013
Trumpeter Smith is on a mighty roll.
Friday 14 June 2013
It's easy to overlook how important his stay in Zurich was to Wagner's development. Having fled there in exile following his participation in the failed Dresden Uprising of 1849, the composer would crystallise his ideas of musical drama in the city, through a series of essays, and more concretely in his prodigious output while resident there.
Friday 24 May 2013
'Earl Sweatshirt's only 19, but he's the best rapper around'
Saturday 18 May 2013
ENO's new production of Berg's 1925 opera draws parallels with servicemen's lives in Afghanistan
Friday 17 May 2013
Since the 1980s, John Zorn has composed 500 songs inspired by traditional Jewish music, a series known as the Masada Book, variously recorded by adventurous musicians such as Marc Ribot and now Pat Metheny.
Monday 13 May 2013
Police in New Orleans were searching for at least two gunmen after a dozen people were wounded when shots were fired at a Mother’s Day parade.
Monday 13 May 2013
It was enough to make listeners think they were still dreaming: a live segue from a worthy discussion to a yodelling woman. But Sunday’s on-air glitches on Radio 4’s Broadcasting House were very real.
Classical review: Carolin Widmann, Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra, Emilio Pomàrico, Morton Feldman: Violin and Orchestra (ECM New Series)
Friday 10 May 2013
In Morton Feldman's lengthy 1979 piece "Violin and Orchestra", neither violin nor orchestra behaves as they do in the standard concerto format.
Wednesday 08 May 2013
Ever since she made history by winning the BBC Musician of the Year contest at the age of twelve, Jennifer Pike has been setting a furious pace as a performer, while maintaining a healthy academic balance.
Saturday 04 May 2013
History rarely supplies plots for full-evening ballets, and with good reason. Dance tends to be strong on feeling, weak on facts. As George Balanchine once drolly observed, ballet has no way of saying “this is my mother-in-law”.
Friday 03 May 2013
Daniel Harding will conduct a BBC Prom due to have been given by Sir Colin Davis who died last month aged 85.
Saturday 27 April 2013
In 2011, Ivan Fischer and the Budapest Festival Orchestra played two BBC Proms in one night. The first was a meticulously disciplined programme of Liszt and Mahler, the second a jamboree of party pieces and encores, selected by raffle from a list of some 200 works. Encores are the great disinhibitors of classical music and they have served Fischer and his orchestra well. Now 30 years old, the BFO can melt the cognoscenti with musical kitsch, compete with the finest in core symphonic repertoire, and deliver Beethoven with the transparency of period instruments. Whether this should all be attempted in one performance is another matter.
Classical review: Imogen Cooper, Ivan Fischer, Budapest Festival Orchestra, Royal Festival Hall, London
Tuesday 23 April 2013
The cadenza in a classical concerto is a curious thing. Originally devised as a way of letting the soloist show off, it became a commentary on the work it adorned, as well as a holiday from it: the soloist could take you on a switchback journey before bringing you safely home. These days, with so many other opportunities for display, its bravura function has faded, so soloists often use it instead as a slot to puff their own wares – as Kennedy does when he injects jazz and Gypsy music into his Brahms.
Monday 15 April 2013
Conductor Sir Colin Davis has died at the age of 85, the London Symphony Orchestra has announced.
Album review: Ulrike Anton, Russell Ryan, David Parry, Lost Generation: Schulhoff, Ullmann, Tauský (exil.arte)
Friday 05 April 2013
The Austrian label exil.arte is dedicated to unearthing lost works by forgotten composers deemed “degenerate” by the Nazis – in most cases, simply a synonym for “Jewish”.
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- 4 Danish TV reporter is all business up top, all party down below
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