Peter Sellars: ‘We need music in business and in politics. Please.’
The director’s acceptance speech of the Polar Prize last night:
Were you moved by Addicts Symphony?
The Channel 4 documentary on classical musicians who were derailed by drink or drugs went out last night at 11pm. The underlying story was familiar – a picture of intolerable pressures of high performance – and some of the personal accounts plumbed a deep well of human sympathy. But the persistent intrusiveness of the medium, […]
Everything’s for sale: Have your music played by the Vienna Philharmonic
Package offer from that high-class establishment, the Imperial Hotel, Vienna: Maestro in the Making, Hotel Imperial (Vienna, Austria) Ivory tinklers can channel their inner Mozart (or at least try) during this two-night Maestro in the Making package at Vienna’s Hotel Imperial. Music lovers join forces with a Viennese composer to create their own piece of […]
Body is found of missing Philharmonic conductor
The body of Brian Webb, a New Zealander who conducted the Vermont Philharmonic since 1976, has been found half a mile out at sea after his wife reported him missing. Brian, 65, had spent the night out on his sailboat. He was an experienced sailor and a faculty member of Union Institute and University. […]
Nike Wagner: Why do all summer festivals have to be the same?
The Bayreuth exile, now running the Beethoven Festival in Bonn, has been sounding off about the problem with festivals. Much of what she says can be applied equally to the Met, or to any other large cultural institution in the early 21st century. Here’s the quote: All festivals today are striving desperately for a […]
Go, Jamie! Cardiff winner gets unexpected role
Mezzo Jamie Barton, popular winner of BBC’s Cardiff Singer of the World, is a late jump-in for San Francisco’s Norma. Daveda Karanas has withdrawn in mid-rehearsals ‘for personal reasons’. Jamie will sing Adalgisa from September 5 opposite Sondra Radvanovsky’s Norma.
Most cultured city in the USA?
Property Shark has drawn up a list of 20 cities that have the most cultural amenities* for head of population. The highest has to be New York, right? Wrong. New York City comes 13th. Los Angeles, then? Wrong again. LA checks in at #17. Chicago? Forget it. Number 20. So where then, where? Check here. […]
Just in: Composer assaulted, opera cancelled in St Petersburg
Ilya Demutsky, whose opera on the Pussy Riot protesters won an award in Italy last year, has been physically attacked in St Petersburg after being lured to a public location for a supposed television interview. Dumtsky claims his latest opera, about a paedophile hunter who resembles a Russian nationalist, has been cancelled by several venues […]
What did this German composer get up to in Paris?
In an eight-month stay in Paris in 1737-8, Georg Philipp Telemann changed his style, his mood, the very character of his music. What on earth was going on in his life? A selection of Telemann’s Paris music is my Album of the Week on sinfinimusic.com.
Poor attendances and late replacements at Edinburgh Festival
Our man in the stalls reports: Bernstein’s Kaddish Symphony faced large swathes of empty seats. The attendance at Guglielmo Tell was slightly increased but still very far from full. Four principals were replaced at short notice without explanation. Seats are available at all prices for Gergiev’s Les Troyens with another unexplained replacement - Mlada Khudoley (pictured) for Ekaterina Gubanova.