Laura Mvula: ‘Sony fired me by email’
The prodigiously talented British singer has been describing how her label dropped her with a seven-line email. ‘I didn’t see anyone, I didn’t hear anybody’s voice. I just read words. It felt so cold and cruel,’ she said. Laura, who is classically trained, is now composing incidental music for Antony and Cleopatra at the Royal […]
Violinists mourn much loved New York teacher
Tributes are being paid to Kati Gerson, who taught hundreds of violinists and teachers at Queen College, CUNY, and at The School for Strings. She died this morning, of cancer. The School for Strings writes: ‘Katherine was beloved by generations of students and teacher trainees. She was a selfless and tireless advocate of Suzuki education, […]
Dutch violinist takes over German ensemble
Isabelle van Keulen is the new artistic director of Kammerakademie Neuss, in the Rhineland. She succeeds Lavard Skou Larsen, whose contract has expired after 12 years. The Academie, a chamber orchestra which specialises in little-known music, is also looking for a chief executive and an upgrade in its media profile.
Mikhail Pletnev: I do not listen to other musicians
From a rare new interview with the Russian pianist and conductor: Do you read reviews of your concerts? – No. Why do you prefer to sit in a chair at the piano and not on a stool? – Back ache. If I get tired – I can lean back and relax a bit. Do you […]
Screw-maker starts a symphony orchestra
Reinhold Würth, 81, is known in Germany as King of the Screws. He makes small bits of joinery on a massive scale. He’s also an epic art collector with an estimated private worth of $10.4 billion. What to do with all those screws? Herr Würth and his wife Carmen are starting an orchestra in Baden-Württemberg. Kent Nagano […]
Violinist is left breathless by mid-concert proposal
Rosemary Siemens was playing a concert in Manitoba and having it filmed for future reference when she saw a man in a white suit coming down the gangway towards her…. Do not try this at a symphony concert. Please.
And they’re selling Jascha Heifetz’s bits, too
A rare picture of the great violinist visiting Israeli in 1950, seen here at the home of its first prime minister, David Ben Gurion. The tour ended in near-disaster when Heifetz was physically attacked by a man who objected to him playing music by Richard Strauss, former head of the Nazi Reichsmusikkamer. Heifetz did […]
Jessye Norman is having a house sale
The diva has reached the time of life for downsizing. She is leaving her White Gates mansion in Westchester County and is selling the contents, which include – according to the auction catalogue – ‘artwork, furniture, decorations, silver, books, autographs and stage jewelry’. The online auction is on March 29. Gold, Green and Red Indian Enamel […]
France will play Radio Rostropovich on March 27
France Musique will play recordings by the great cellist and conductor from 7 am to 11pm on its webradio, on what would have been his 90th birthday. He’s sorely missed.
ENO’s John Berry teams up with old foe
The ousted director of English National Opera has formed a joint venture with Loretta Tomasi, the company’s former chief executive with whom he fought hammer and tongs over spending plans, precipitating first her departure and then his own. Their company, Opera Ventures, will do pop-up co-productions, the first being Mark-Anthony Turnage’s Greek with Scottish Opera […]
Just in: Mutter and Blomstedt donated their weekend fees to refugees
The star violinist and senior conductor gave a concert in Leipzig this weekend. Afterwards it became known that both had donated their fees to an educational charity for refugees in Germany. The joint donation is estimated at 60,000 Euros.