Anna Netrebko: I won’t sing at Bayreuth
It had been widely reported that she had been cast as Elsa in Lohengrin in 2018. Forget it, she tells Eleanore Büning in a wide-ranging FAZ interview. Why not? ‘I’ll tell you a secret,’ says Anna. ‘My brain refuses to memorise German.’ She sang Elsa in Dresden this year (pictured) and didn’t feel comfortable. Jetzt […]
A Syrian artist in Salzburg
Maroine Dib is one of the livelier artists on display at the festival. More striking caricatures here. And one more for luck:
Peter Gelb: Opera is suffering from education failures
From a soft interview with ZealNYC: Opera is an old art form, it is in foreign languages, and is typically longer than movies and plays. It is more challenging for an audience, particularly an audience that doesn’t already know about opera. With a lack of classical music education, it is very difficult to overcome those obstacles, […]
Peru’s new president is a former London music student
Pedro Kuczynski, who was sworn in last week as president in Lima, spent a year studying piano and flute at the Royal College of Music before he went up to Oxford. Kuczynski, who is now 77, would have been in the class of ’56. Anyone remember him? He still plays.
More bunkum on happiness
An economist at the University of Southern Denmark, Karol Jan Borowieck, has conducted that composer write better when they are miserable. He achieved this blinding insight by reading 1,400 letters written by Mozart, Beethoven and Liszt. The glum ones seemed to coincide with the greater works. Using econometrics, he calculates that a 9.3 percent increase in […]
La Phil’s new trombone blasts off next week
They don’t waste time in Southern California. The LA Phil have been in touch to confirm our report that David Rejano Cantero will be its new principal trombone. Starting first thing next Monday. David is presently principal at the Munich Philharmonic. He’ll barely have time to pack a bag.
Just in: Russian wins Cleveland
The Russian pianist Nikita Mndoyants came first in the Cleveland International Piano Competition. His prize is $75,000, a New York recital and US management. The Italian Leonardo Colafelice came second; third was Dinara Klinton, of Ukraine. photo: Roger Mastroianni Mndoyants was a Van Cliburn finalist in 2013.
Bayreuth’s Ring maestro: These Regie productions belong in East Germany
Marek Janowski, who is conucting Frank Castorf’s Ring at Bayreuth, has spoken out against the Regietheater trend which, he says, has no rightful place in modern opera. Specifically: Diese Art Regietheater ist ja aus der DDR gekommen. Das sind Nach-68er-Entwicklungen. Und dann ist ein nicht genau genug nachdenkendes deutsches Feuilleton auf den Zug aufgesprungen. Und […]
Sing this: Maestro makes home improvements to Happy Birthday
The Budapest conductor Ivan Fischer deconstructs the horrible melody and offers an upgrade.
Opera of the Year (4): The one that will last the test of time
Some kind soul has put on Youtube the complete film of South Pole, the Srnka opera that sold out its entire first run at Bavarian State Opera in February. We thought, on first sight, that it was pretty good. Now we think it is built to last. So much to admire in the plot and […]
If you’re happy and you know it (you’re probably not a musician)
Two scholars at Deakin University in Australia have published a survey that purports to show people are happier when they are listening to music. There are two flaws to this proposition. First, the method: A stratified random sample of 1,000 participants was interviewed via telephone. Useless, as recent results have testified for predicting any political outcome. […]