Tag Archives: orchestra

Lucerne Festival Shake-Up: Mahler Out, Mozart and Beethoven In

I’m hugely disappointed:

Change of program:
LUCERNE FESTIVAL hereby announces that on 8 August as well as on 10 and 11 August, Claudio Abbado will conduct Beethoven’s Incidental music to “Egmont” and Mozart’s Requiem. For artistic reasons, this program replaces the originally scheduled Eighth Symphony by Gustav Mahler.

I had been planning to attend what was to be the culmination of Abbado’s Lucerne Mahler symphony cycle. Interesting that as of the hour of this post lucernefestival.ch seems to be having technical problems (style sheets and javascript are offline). I will post more information as soon as I know more.

Inaugurating the New and Recent Release Podcast

I’m going to take a crack at regularly showcasing new and recent releases that impress the heck out of me. Herein is the first edition.

{enclose 20111105.nrpodcast.mp3}

More information on the featured recordings:

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Inaugurating the New and Recent Release Podcast

I’m going to take a crack at regularly showcasing new and recent releases that impress the heck out of me. Herein is the first edition.

{enclose 20111105.nrpodcast.mp3}

More information on the featured recordings:

Continue reading

Is He the Greatest Recording Era Conductor You’ve (Probably) Never Heard Of?

It was Ray Edwards – at the time buyer for Tower Records’ legendary, late, lamented classical department on West 4th and Broadway – that recommended I check out the recordings of British-born, Russian-raised conductor Albert Coates (I believe we’d been talking about the ever-popular “Toscanini vs. Furtwängler” debate and my having come down decidedly on the side of Willem Mengelberg).

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The Great Fake Prominent International Orchestra Swindle

Daniel Wakin has the juicy details at the NY Times. The truth is that the “Great International Orchestra Swindle” is not a terribly well-kept secret – and arguably one of the biggest scandals – in the American classical music business.

It’s also worth noting that on more than one occasion I’ve seen fine local free-lancers padding out the ranks of a couple of legitimate “name” Russian orchestras performing in New York City. It might be a worthwhile topic for a follow-up article by Wakin, who has become a “must-read” music journalist.

DSO Management Offers Players New Contract

The Detroit Symphony Orchestra, one of the nation’s best “second tier” orchestras, has been on strike for the last couple of months, but there was a move just over a week ago on the players’ side to move toward a setttlement. Management issued a counteroffer today according to the Detroit Free Press. Here’s hoping they settle, and fast — especially after having just listened to the orchestra’s new recording of Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 2 conducted by music director Leonard Slatkin. It’s a thrilling, brisk performance that eschews sentimentality for high-octane virtuoso playing. It would be a pity — and a blow to Detroit, which has had a hellish enough few decades — to see this orchestra fold.