Another record fund-raiser for Japan, but where are the classics?
Hours after Universal launched a Japan-aid album, here’s EMI with a charity auction. Only one classical artist in it, though. I want to buy Natalie Dessay’s used hardware. Not Kylie Minogue’s. Show me a longer list. LATE EXTRA: EMI tell me that Diana Damrau and the Berlin Phil have joined the auction. Counter-tenor Philippe Jarousky […]
They think this is the next Gorecki
The Irish composer Donnacha Dennehy may not automatically be top of your morning, but he’s getting the kind of launch that most would cry for. Dennehy has a release next month on Nonesuch. The first track, Love and Death, for singer (Iarla O Lionard) and ensemble, is a meditative setting of old Irish tropes. But […]
What to play in a brand new hall
The Helsinki Music Centre opens in September and, by the accounts reaching me, it’s going to sound pretty good. First night features two orchestras and three conductors – but then Finland exports almost as many maestros as cellphones, so the surplus is hardly surprising. What is remarkable, though – and I bring this to you […]
Breaking: Bayreuth loses its next Ring director in 3-D row
It has been announced in Germany that film director Wim Wenders will not, after all, direct the next Bayreuth Ring in 2013. Apparently, the Katharina and Eva agner who are running the show could not agree to the cost and paraphenalia of filming it in 3-D, as Wenders did so successfully in his Pina Bausch […]
Do you really want to watch a concert in the cinema?
I’m going on Radio 4’s PM programme in a couple of hours to discuss the Berlin Philharmonic scheme of releasing some of its concerts in movie houses, in 3-D. The story, from the morning’s Guardian, strikes me as an initiative that is behind time, rather than ahead of it. I can understand people taking up […]
Let's buy classical music for Japan
A rush release, out tomorrow, features some of the foremost classical artists on Deutsche Grammophon giving their services for Japan quake and tsunami victims. Big cheers for all concerned. Add it to your collection. Meantime, I hear the Stuttgart orchestras have raised 70,000 Euros for Japan. Good on them. Here’s the release information: Deutsche Grammophon, […]
Surprise, surprise: Vienna and Salzburg are all kissy-kissy again
Every few years the Salzburg Festival threatens to sack the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra and replace it with some other ensemble of equivalent rank. The Viennese give a weary sigh and say ‘nobody plays it like we do.’ Then the politicians have their say and the press whip it up and, for a few weeks, we […]
A word in the ear of my pals in the Phil
There are many Philharmonic Orchestras in the world, full of pomp and circumstance, but there’s only one Phil – and that, as any well-educated child will confirm, is Liverpool. The Royal Liverpool, if we’re being formal. There’s a musical spirit on the Mersey unlike any other and I’m always chuffed to go and hear the […]
News just in: Brazil's biggest pianist boycotts the national orchestra
The premier Brazilian pianist Nelson Freire has announced his withdrawl from concerts with the Brazilian Symphony Orchestra, which has sacked half its musicians in a reaudition dispute. His withdrawal follows that of Cristina Ortiz yesterday. The soloists appear to be starting a solidarity movement with the orchestral musicians. I received the following note indirectly from […]
Detroit strike over?
It looks like it … According to this breaking story, they could be playing again as soon as next weekend. The reporter’s name, by the way, is Stryker. He is studiously neutral. LATE EXTRA: This from the Detroit musicians’ site within the past hour MDSO wishes to announce that it has reached tentative agreement with […]
These are your Artists of the Decade
The reconstituted Classic (formerly Classical) Brits have announced their first award. The Artist of the Decade is… sound of envelope ripping …. Il Divo!!!!! Apparently they have sold 25 million records worldwide and are signed to Simon Cowell’s label. Cowell pulls most significant strings in the sad old music business these days. So the four […]