The world’s foremost Chopin authority died today, aged 100
Professor Jan Ekier, pianist, composer and Chopin editor of the Polish National edition, died today, a fortnight short of his 101st birthday. His death has just been reported on Polish radio. Jan, born August 1913, came eighth in the 1937 Chopin competition in Warsaw and made his name more as a scholar than as a […]
The Met’s viola helps out in quake-torn Haiti
Milan Milisavljević, is assistant principal viola in the Metropolitan Opera orchestra. Last year, concerned about the lack of resources in impoverished Haiti, he gave up a mid-season week’s break to help kids on the island with their music education. Here’s Milan’s story. Sample: I staggered onto my return flight with serious food poisoning and without […]
Hot video: Quincy Jones’s new protégé lives in Finchley, north London
Meet Jacob Collier. He’s 19, lives in Maggie Thatcher’s old constituency and is described to us by one conductor as ‘the closest thing to Mozart I’ve ever seen’. Jacob is working with legends (see pic below) and has a contract with Universal (they’ve kept it under wraps). This new video you have to see. It’s […]
Good TV ad for an orchestra. Or turnoff?
The St Louis Symphony thinks this is how to get a new audience into the concert hall. The slogans on the soundtrack are persuasive: – It’s a language the communicates with so many people emotionally. – It can be very, very moving. – You can always find something that you like. – Once you realise […]
Streaming free this afternoon…
At 4pm Central Europe time (10am New York): Verdi’s Trovatore live from the Salzburg Festival, starring Anna Netrebko, Plácido Domingo, Francesco Meli and Marie-Nicole Lemieux. Click here - and share!
First cast change in Met season opener
Marina Poplovskaya has withdrawn from the new Marriage of Figaro ‘for health reasons’. The Russian is replaced as the Countess by all-American soprano Amanda Majeski (pictured), making her Met debut – assuming the dispute between Peter Gelb and the main unions can be settled in time for the season to open. Lockout deadline: this Sunday.
Explosion and fire at Stuttgart Opera
Emergency services were called out last after resident reported a loud bang and saw smoke billowing from the theatre building. Happily, 60 fire fighters got there fast, traced the blaze to the costumes department and extinguished it fast. No-one was hurt. Damage is estimated at 150,000 Euros – very light, indeed.
Anna Netrebko shows off her $85,000 engagement ring
The diva has been showing her new rock in Salzburg. It reputedly cost 62,000 Euros and is made of all the right stuff, according to the German magazine Bunte, where this picture appeared. Her fiancé is Yusif Eyvazov and they have been dating since March. (c) Brauer Photos/Bunte, all rights reserved It’s not the kind of […]
Don’t look now: The festival poster will give you a migraine
The designer is a Canadian composer, Chiyoko Szlavnics, who is based in Berlin. Not a great advert for her music. Or anything else, for that matter.
Pierre Boulez, post surgery, pulls out of Lucerne
The aged composer, in his 90th year and unlucky with his health, has pulled out of his last remaining engagement – a teaching presence at the Lucerne Festival. Here’s the overnight statement: Owing to a shoulder operation from which he is still recuperating, Pierre Boulez, the Artistic Director of the LUCERNE FESTIVAL ACADEMY, must […]
Downton Abbey has never got it so wrong
The faux-1920s series takes great care over its period costumes, less over the authenticity of period speech and apparently none at all over mantelpieces. What’s that to the right, between the urns? Downton Abbey publicity photo, released last night A 21st century plastic water bottle. Well done, Downton. Can’t wait for the mobile […]