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Concerts: previews / reviews

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I'd go, Jim!

Have you ever heard "The Bells"?!?! Check out Kondrashin's recording with Moscow PO. (I think it's on YT.)

And Bronfman is no slouch. I bet his Liszt will be well worth hearing.

Sure, Tchaik will be a little cheesy -- but so what? I'd go for the Rach and the Liszt!

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ELP actually fired cannons at the end of their interpretation of Pictures at an Exhibition. A cameraman was near one and warned, but he hung around and kept shooting, at least until the cannon shot. There was a commercial video released of it.

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Think I'll put the energy into this Monday night event. I've been enjoying the various Bang On A Can projects.

https://www.mydso.com/buy/tickets/anthracite-fields

Julia Wolfe's Anthracite Fields

April 15 | 2019


Moody Performance Hall

7:30PM


Julia Wolfe COMPOSER
Bang on a Can All-Stars 
Verdigris Ensemble 

This powerful oratorio, which evokes Pennsylvania coal-mining life, won the 2015 Pulitzer Prize in Music. Called “unforgettably haunting” by the LA Times, this one-hour piece is set to archival footage of coal country, providing context for the dreamlike composition.

Please join us in the concert hall following the performance for a moderated discussion about the work. 

Click here for program notes and artist bios!

https://d15gc4eof6ew0j.cloudfront.net/pdf/Anthracite%20Fields%20Program%20Pages.pdf

 

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Just got back from Anthracite Fields. Worth leaving home for!

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Heading out the door to check out "the new guy::

Fabio Luisi CONDUCTS

W.G. STILL

Poem for Orchestra

 

 

F. MARTIN

Concerto for Seven Winds, Timpani, Percussion and Strings

 

 

 

BEETHOVEN

Symphony No. 7

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3 minutes ago, JSngry said:

F. MARTIN

Concerto for Seven Winds, Timpani, Percussion and Strings

Pretty sure I have this on one of several (6?) Frank Martin CD's I have, and I recall it being pretty nice!!

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It was pretty nice. The whole evening was quite enjoyable. Satisfying "present-ness" on the first half, absolute ZONE on the Beethoven - which was conducted with no podium or score, so when the shit started flowing, it looked as organic as it sounded. It felt REAL.

This is gonna be fun.

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Caught Son Volt at Rose Music Hall in Columbia, MO Thursday night. Just an oldschool honky tonk, for the most part. Place was packed, probably around 275-300 in attendance. Son Volt killed, as expected. 

It was the opening night of their tour, which means I’ve attended three opening nights. And will be attending my fourth in June when I see Phish kick off their 2019 summer tour.

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2 hours ago, Scott Dolan said:

Caught Son Volt at Rose Music Hall in Columbia, MO Thursday night. Just an oldschool honky tonk, for the most part. Place was packed, probably around 275-300 in attendance. Son Volt killed, 

Now there is one band I've still to see live who I'd love to see

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6 minutes ago, mjazzg said:

Now there is one band I've still to see live who I'd love to see

You’ll love them when you do. :) 

They played some of the tunes straight up, but altered many of them. Most notably their horn-less version of Action, which I found superior to the original. And their amazing coda jam they added to Medication, which Jay introduced as a song they’d not done live in six years. 

Wildest part is the final number of the night was a very interesting cover of the Stones Monkey Man. 

Highly recommended show! 

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Yeah, this: http://www.theaterjones.com/ntx/reviews/20190419155139/2019-04-19/Dallas-Symphony-Orchestra/Fabio-Luisi-Conducts-the-Dallas-Symphony

While Swiss Calvinist composer Martin is not widely known in the U.S., his music is evidently performed more frequently on the European Continent. So, this seems like a message from Luisi. With William Grant Still, Luisi is familiarizing us with our own native music. With Frank Martin, he’s familiarizing us with (kind of) his. One wonders whether that’s going to be a theme of Luisi’s tenure with the orchestra, and so far it seems as if it might be.

His concerts next season are similarly a mix of the familiar and the unexpected—Beethoven, Brahms, Copland, Strauss, and Rimsky-Korsakov, yes, but also Augusta Read Thomas, Julia Wolfe, a lesser-known piece by Samuel Barber, and Franz Schmidt’s The Book with Seven Seals.

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David Robertson CONDUCTS
Orli Shaham PIANO

STRAVINSKY

Fireworks

BERNSTEIN

Symphony No. 2, "Age of Anxiety"

STRAVINSKY

The Firebird (Complete)

This was a nice evening of music. First time hearing the first two, and the first time hearing the complete Firebird instead of the suite. The Bernstein piece was actually quite good, not a "great" work, but definitely interesting and engaging. Shaham really brought it, too.

Support live music!

 
 

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My wife and I were fortunate to be invited to a small concert to be held this afternoon in a private home here in Tucson.

Classical pianist Peter Takacs will be performing Beethoven Sonatas.

Takacs has recorded an 11 CD set of the Beethoven Sonatas and will be bring a few if any of the people there are interested in purchasing the set.

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Last night saw Angela Hewitt playing Bach's Goldberg Variations (completely from memory, which is an incredible feat in its own right).  The place was packed, and they actually had some people (20 or so) seated on the stage itself!  This makes the third time I've seen Goldberg live, and while the other performances were good, Hewitt is in another class altogether.  She's coming back around in April to play Bach's Art of the Fugue (for piano, not organ), and that should also be outstanding.

What made last night a bit more special is that they had the author Madeleine Thien come out before and talk about the connection between her novel, Do Not Say We Have Nothing, and the Goldberg Variations.

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Saw ORF Radio-Symphonieorchester Wien with Marin Alsop conducting at Konzarthaus here in Vienna yesterday. The program was:

1. Christopher Rouse Rapture (1999–2000)

2. Lera Auerbach Evas Klage. O Blumen, die niemals blühen werden (2019)

3. Paul Hindemith Symphonie »Mathis der Maler« (1933–1934)

4. Paul Hindemith Sancta Susanna. Oper in einem Akt op. 21 (1921)
 

First off, ORF Radio-Symphonieorchester Wien is excellent. I was surprised how good they are, I always thought of them as a distant hack-job cousin to Wiener Philharmoniker and Wiener Symphoniker. I was clearly wrong. I am curious if this was actually always a good orchestra or it's a recent development - perhaps soulpop would know.  

On the music, the Rouse piece was interesting and colorful with great tympani flourishes. I have never heard of Rouse (who died a few weeks ago, as I learned), and I will definitely be investigating more. Auerbach's piece on the other hand, was an awful saccharine pastiche (sort of Schnittke / Slyvestrov thing, ECM-ready) with over-long citation from Purcell's "Music for a While" (which was anyway the best part of the piece) and overbearing Ondes Martenot. Moreover, it was preceded by a long rambling speech from the composer (this was the world premiere of this crap) where she mentioned that the "music contains humor". When a composer feels the need to point out that she has humor in the work that is about to be performed it's probably time to head for the door. But it was mercifully short. Nice touch was that the soloists were the "last" instruments - meaning, last (as opposed to first) violin, last alto, etc. - who played superbly, I really wonder how much of a difference there is between first and last violin in an orchestra of such caliber. As always with Viennese audience (particularly when the composer is present), long and enthusiastic applause. 

Hindemith's "Mathis der Maler" was excellent, as expected. I am fairly familiar with the piece (in different performances), and I always felt that there are just too many ideas packed in there with a bit of a disjunctive overall feel to it. But these are all beautiful ideas, anyway. The brass were great on that one. I set on the first balcony raw, the sound was perfect.  

I did not stay for the opera. Had enough of positive musical impressions for the evening. 

Marin Alsop

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We've had a few Rouse things hear at the DSO, I think him and Jaap were tight, and I've heard him on various "modern classical" podcasts. RIP to ho him, and he obviously made a mark in his time. But I've yet to hear a work that sounds really...organic to my tastes. But that's just based on what I've heard to date.

8 minutes ago, JSngry said:

We've had a few Rouse things hear at the DSO, I think him and Jaap were tight, and I've heard him on various "modern classical" podcasts. RIP to him, and he obviously made a mark in his time. But I've yet to hear a work that sounds really...organic to my tastes. But that's just based on what I've heard to date.

 

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Saw a very strong concert this afternoon - Daniel Hope with the Zurich Chamber Orchestra at Koerner Hall in Toronto.

The main feature was Vivaldi's Four Seasons for strings and harpsichord and also accompanied by guitar or lute, depending on the "season."  That was an interesting twist.

They opened with a very fine Bach Concerto for Two Violins in D Minor, BWV 104.

They earned (or at least performed) three encores.  No question there is a bit difference in Europe and North America towards the encore at a classical concert.  Generally, I find them extremely rare, unless it is a European orchestra on tour here.  ;)

The first encore was the last movement of a different Vivaldi concerto, then Gershwin's I Got Rhythm! and finally Weill's September Song.  An interesting change of pace.

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Tomorrow evening my wife and I will be attending a concert by the Naumburg Trio. This is part of the Arizona Friends of Chamber Music evening series.  They will be performing the following 3 pieces:

Beethoven - Piano Trio in E-flat Major, WoO 38

Shostakovich - Piano Trio No.1 in C Minor, Op.8

Schubert - Piano Trio No.2 in E- flat Major, D.929

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Getting back into the concert season tonight with this, at the DSO:

Fabio Luisi CONDUCTS
Lise Lindstrom SOPRANO

COPLAND Quiet City

JULIA WOLFE Fountain of Youth [Dallas Premiere]

BARBER Andromache’s Farewell

RIMSKY-KORSAKOV Scheherazade

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Fabio Luisi is definitely going to be fun to have around.

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