BBC Proms attendance is sharply down
The BBC has released attendance figures for the 2014 and, as suspected by the sight of empty rows, the numbers are down. Sold capacity at Royal Albert Hall concerts was 88 percent. Over the past four years it has been consistently above 90 percent, reaching a record 94-95 percent in Roger Wright’s final seasons. The […]
The highest baritone beneath the skies
Part four of Gerald Finley’s assault on Mount Kilimanjaro: Day 5 A strange and restless night – get up into the cold to traipse to the bucket tent, or ignore the rumblings and try to sleep? The sleep needs wins. Eventually sleep is had in the hour between light and Thomas’ “hello… how are […]
Israeli settlers whip up anti-Klinghoffer Met demo
An alleged ‘coalition’ of Jewish groups are planning a demo near the Metropolitan Opera to protest against the Sept. 22 staging of John Adams’ opera The Death of Klinghoffer, which they consider to be anti-semitic. The news is net-blasted by Arutz Sheva, propaganda outlet of West Bank settlers. Read here. Treat with care.
Hot tip-off: Five names in the frame for Jansons’ job
We hear the Concertgebouw has very quickly put together a shortlist of the maestros it wants to consider to succeed Mariss Jansons. Three are Finns: Esa-Pekka Salonen, Jukka-Pekka Saraste and Sakari Oramo. Paavo Jarvi was added, two weeks ago, the moment he announced his departure from the Orchestre de Paris. The fifth name is unknown […]
English county gets rid of music teachers
It is reported that Cornwall, probably the poorest part of England and certainly the most beautiful, has decided to sack all of its music teachers. They will be employed as and when required on a freelance basis. What kind of living is that?
Met showdown seals swift San Fran deal
San Francisco Opera and its musicians are singing off the same hymn sheet: ‘Following almost four months of bargaining, characterized by both parties as collegial, respectful and dedicated to shared problem-solving, the new agreement creates a stable working framework now through July 31, 2018,’ said a joint announcement (below). Expect more like this. The spectre […]
Exclusive video: Martha Argerich in rehearsal
It comes from Milan last night, courtesy of Kevin Pepers. (If video does not pop out, click on word ‘Post’). Post by Kevin Pepers.
Scottish composers fear independence split
A group of leading Scottish musicians, most of them composers, have published a letter in the Herald warning that a Yes vote could cost them valuable support from the BBC. The signatories are: Rory Boyle, composer; Helen Grime, composer; James Loughran, former Principal Conductor, BBC SSO; Eddie McGuire, composer; John McLeod, composer; James MacMillan, composer; […]
Atlanta chair tells board: expect no end to lockout any time soon
Hardliner Karole Lloyd, who presided at the 2012 lockout, has cancelled this month’s board meeting. Here’s her memo. We might give her a ring. TO: Members, Board of Directors Atlanta Symphony Orchestra FROM: Karole Lloyd I wanted to let everyone know that we have decided to postpone next week’s regularly scheduled Board meeting. We […]
Vienna Philharmonic ‘unhappy’ at loss of Welser-Most
The music director’s walkout at the Vienna Opera has hit the orchestra hard. Franz W-M is due to take them on a Scandinavian tour. And their coming season is unusually full of new music - Olivier Messiaen, Krzysztof Penderecki, Pierre Boulez, Claude Vivier, Jorg Widmann. ‘The Philharmonic musicians are very interested in contemporary,’ declares the orch’s […]
What happens when a baritone climbs too high
Part three of Gerald Finley’s assault on Mount Kilimanjaro: Day 3 Slept poorly – dreams strange but fleeting. The occasional deep snore from another tent – apparently a sign of altitude acclimatisation. The large group dynamics of similar language groups always throws up the livelier souls – always laughing too loud too often. Sleep is […]