Slightly less rosy news for classical CDs

Early analysis of last week’s 13 percent rise in US classical CD sales on the Nielsen indicates, regrettably, no huge resurgence for Mozart and Mahler. Instead, it’s crossover and trash TV that contribute principally to the increase.

The biggest selling ‘classical’ CD of the period was pre-teen Talent star Jackie Evancho with 427,992 albums sold in the year to date. Next was the Il Volo boy band with 120,899. Ah well, the illusion was nice while it lasted. And yes, there was a better performance from small indy labels.

 

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  • On Jackie Evancho’s album there at least are some classical tracks, althoug based on the bits and pieces I just listened are not worth my time.

    I do not understand however why “Il Volo” is even getting the slightest bit of a consideration to be listed in a classical music ranking.

    • Alice K. Mercurio says:

      I can tell you why “Il Volo” is listed in a classical music ranking. Yes, Billboard has expanded the inclusions in this category; however, all of the members of Il Volo have received classical vocal training in the singing schools of Italy. If you listen all the way through both of their CDs, you will hear the results of this classical training. The potential of their voices far surpasses anything that Andrea Bocelli has produced, I believe. All three of these young men have the talent and capability to choose to limit their careers to classical opera productions in the finest opera companies of the world; however, they have spoken of the desire to use the ‘bel canto’ tradition of modern Italian song to introduce the higher level of vocal finesse of classical singing to people their own age.
      Being a classically-trained singer myself, I must say I enjoy the art song tradition (my own favorite performers’ choice). I believe Il Volo reflects the desire of musicians to be able to find a niche that can appeal to a broader audience, while maintaining standards of excellent musicianship.

      • GabrielArcAngel says:

        Ms. Mercurio

        Does this mean “II Volo” are superior vocalist to Jackie Evancho?

        After all Jackie outsold “II Volo bor 300K

        (I AM JOKING)!!!!!!!!!!!!!

        What’s your opinion on Jackie’s vocal technique, a self-taught light lyrical soprano
        with no traces of Coloratura that can damage her young vocal chords.
        Jackie uses her “Head voice ” or upper register and thereby puts no strain on the vocal chords
        A true Bel Canto Style traditionalist and should emulate Ms Beverly Sill (child prodigy)Beverly Sills who mastered 22 operatic arias by age 7 and had a long productive career
        http://www.answers.com/topic/beverly-sills

        Grazie mille! = Thank you very much!

    • PhantomChaos says:

      “Not worth your time” eh? What CC artist, or opera singer for that matter, sings Nessun Dorma as good as Jackie does?? Who sings Ombra Mai Fu better than Jackie?

      • Janey says:

        The level of your delusion is frightening.

      • Chuck says:

        Phantom, I haven’t listened to all of them by any means, and while some may be technically superior to Jackie’s Nessun, I haven’t heard any that are as pleasing to the ear. It’s the way it is. That goes a long way with me. Technical means nothing if there’s nothing else.

  • Adam Krims says:

    This isn’t really anything new, is it? Has not the cross-over material tended to lead sales in the ‘classical’ category, ever since that category was redefined to include it?

  • James Glicker says:

    Apropos of Adam’s comment, can’t someone with access to the RIAA data strip out all the crossover stuff in both years and tell us what the ‘real’ classical market is doing? Anyone at a record label used to be able to do this. The picture is always highly distorted by not only things such as Jackie E, but also soundtracks, Broadway shows, etc, any of which have pumped ‘Classical’ sales through the roof (‘Titanic’, anyone?).

  • Janey says:

    Yes, wasn’t Sarah Brightman the top “classical” seller for a number of years? And didn’t Bocelli sell over 500,000 CDs in 2009? Given that, I don’t think you can automatically attribute the increase to Evancho and Il Volo. She’s simply replacing Bocelli’s CDs, after he replaced Brightman’s.

    I’ve just checked Billboard’s Classical Chart myself, for September 4, 2010. The top seller was Sting’s Symphonicities, with David Garrett (TWO CDs), the “Canadian Tenors” and Renee Fleming’s pop Dark Hope near the top.

    Add these to Bocelli’s sales in 2009 and I’m not understanding the reason for this current increase. Perhaps it’s because sales of crossover CDs have usually been back-loaded around Christmas? If so, sales will even out in time. If not, there is an additional reason.

    • Charles Hoff says:

      “I’ve just checked Billboard’s Classical Chart myself, for September 4, 2010. The top seller was Sting’s Symphonicities, with David Garrett (TWO CDs), the “Canadian Tenors” and Renee Fleming’s pop Dark Hope near the top.”

      Janey, for the week of Sept 4th, NONE of those were in the top 10. For the week of Sept 10th, the Billboard Classical Chart is as follows:

      1. Dream With Me / Jackie Evancho
      2. Il Volo / Il Volo
      3. Il Volo: Edicion En Español / Il Volo
      4. 2 Cellos / 2 Cellos
      5. This is The Christ / Mormon Tabernacle Choir / Orchestra At Temple Square
      6. 66 Must-Have Sensual Classic… / Various Artists
      7. The 100 Most Essential Piece… / Various Artista
      8. Wish Upon A Star: A Tribute… / JennyOaks Baker
      9. O Holy Night (EP) / Jackie Evancho
      10. Rock Symphonies / David Garrett
      11. Disney: Baby Einstein: Disco… / The Baby Einstein Music Box Orchestra
      12. 99 Must-Have Piano Masterpieces / Various Artists
      13. 100 Must Have Classical Song… / Various Artists
      14. Mediterraneo / Milos Karadaglic
      15. 50 Relaxing Classics / Various Artists
      16. Bizet: Carmen: Duets & Arias / Various Artists
      17. The Royal Wedding: The Official… / Various Artists
      18. Men Of The Mormon Tabernacle Choir / Mormon Tabernacle Choir/Orchestra…
      19. The 99 Most Essential Gregorian… / Various Artists
      20. Symphonicities / Sting
      21. The 99 Most Essential Masterpieces… / Various Artists
      22. Sting: Live In Berlin / Sting featuring the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra (Mercurio)
      23. LIght & Gold / Eric Whitacre
      24. Best of Classics for Relaxation / Various Artists
      26. Bring Him Home / Alfie Boe (“26” is how it’s posted on Billboard)

      • Charles Hoff says:

        Ah, 2010! That threw me. Sheesh! I feel sheepish!

        Sting’s “Symphonicities” was #1, and David Garrett’s “Rock Symphonies” was #2.

        But you left out something very conspicuous. Just ahead of Fleming’s “Dark Hope” at #5 was: Prelude To A Dream / Jackie Evancho at #4, which put her also ahead of David Garrett (#6), and The Canadian Tenors (#7). Was this omission intentional on your part? Why?

        • Janey says:

          Of course it was intentional! We were discussing classical crossover CD sales in 2011 and I was pointing out that having crossover in the charts is nothing new. IN ADDITION to Evancho, there have been numerous others. I discussed 2010. So, yes, it was intentional and clearly followed the point I was making.

  • Infusing the classical category with more contemporary crossover music is the antithesis of what defines classical. When the crossover artists can be strategically compared to their more eloquent comrades something is diminished. This isn’t to imply that the crossover artists are less trained, less talented, or less deserving of recognition through sales, but possibly categorized thus only for increasing classical sales. They do themselves an injustice by allowing their talent to exploit the genre in that way. Just to get a positive blip on the Nielsen?

  • Janey says:

    @Justin

    I don’t know. I think most classical crossover artists find it very comfortable in that niche. They have something “unique” over their “pop” counterparts that provides them a marketable angle.

    The oddest thing I’ve found in America is that being called an “opera singer” on one of the talent shows gives the contestant some additional cache, even though most of the population claims not to like opera. These contestants then use that cache to help garner sales.

    Not only of CDs, apparently.

    I saw earlier today that Jackie Evancho will be appearing, according to an advertisement, “Live at Lincoln Center.” (Lincoln Center is treated as a venue) She is, it seems, singing at Avery Fisher Hall, with a “full orchestra” of some sort.

  • Stephanie says:

    Jackie Evancho had four concerts in August. She had sold out shows with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Omaha Symphony Orchestra, and the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. Ms. Evancho goes out of her way to make sure people understand she is not an opera singer but sings in the classical crossover style because that’s what fits her voice best. As to her CD sales. she’s doing something right , two cd’s in a year and both made it to #2 on the billboard charts making her the youngest person ever to reach even the top 10 . The week her “Dream With ME” was released she sold more than popular artists Katy Perry, Lady Gaga , and Justin Bieber COMBINED.

    I know I am sounding like a cheerleader for Ms. Evancho, but her concert last night at the Meyerson Symphony Center with the DSO was the most incredible and one of the most memorable nights I’ve had as a season ticket holder of the DSO Texas Instruments Classical Series for the last 9 years. I have never seen any artist there receive 11 standing ovations in one performance as she did last night. Let me tell you they weren’t standing because she is an 11 year old girl who happens to sing good. But, because she is a world class vocal talent with the charisma to make you want to watch her and the singing ability to make you glad you did .

    • Janey says:

      Thank you, Stephanie. I’m thrilled you enjoyed the show. Just to be clear, though, she didn’t perform with the Atlanta, Chicago and Omaha Symphonies. Those were pick-up orchestras under a different conductor. I don’t know about Dallas. But, I think it’s great she’s doing well.

      I do wonder if she had been a 30 year old woman whether those 11 standing ovations would have occurred. You say ‘yes,’ but I doubt it. A large part of her “charisma” is the fact that she’s a child. She’s wonderful for her age and has the potential to be something truly extraordinary as an adult. I hope, by then, she hasn’t caused herself any damage from singing so young.

      • wayne miller says:

        Janey says:”she didn’t perform with the Atlanta, Chicago or Omaha symphonies” I’m sitting here looking at my Omaha ,Jackie Evancho program, program page, for the two overture selections at the beginning it says Omaha Symphony and for the two selections after intermission it says Omaha Symphony. They think they are the symphony and they were the ones on the stage, so maybe you should take their word for it.

      • Charles says:

        Janey,
        I find it very sad that you seem to take every opportunity to attempt to diminsh what this young singer is doing. Your “Just to be clear…” statement insinuating that a “pick-up orchestra” of professional-caliber musicians somehow lessens the validity of her appearances is an insult to every one of them. Luckily, your statement is inaccurate.

        Two of her appearances were with sort-of “pick-up” orchestras: In Idaho, she appeared with the Sun Valley Summer Symphony Orchestra. Jennifer Teisinger, Sun Valley Summer Symphony’s executive directer, saw Jackie perform at the Boca Raton Festival of the Arts last March 12th at the program titled: A Night at the Opera: Jackie Evancho, John Tessier, and Young Stars of the Metropolitan Opera with Boca Raton Symphonia, obviously another pitiful pick-up group. Well, Ms. Teisinger was blown away. “When she’s singing, she’s professional, elegant, inspiring and sort of amazing. There’s this very ethereal angelic voice coming out of her. Then, when she stops singing, she’s 10 again. She waves to the audience and she curtsies instead of bows,” Teisinger said. This is from the article published in:

        In Chicago, alas, she did not appear with the Chicago Symphony. She performed at the Ravinia Festival, and as such, was necessarily accompanied by the Ravinia Festival Orchestra, yet another agglomeration of casual corner-standers. Conrad Tao made a special appearance to accompany her on the piano.

        Still, you seemed so certain that she did not perform with the Atlanta Symphony. Well, I hate to break it to ya. She *did* perform with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. The announcement for her Atlanta appearance from the official Atlanta Symphony website Is:
        “11-year old singing sensation Jackie Evancho, who regaled the nation on “America’s Got Talent” and is hailed as the tiny girl with the extraordinarily big voice and perfect pitch, makes a spectacular debut with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Friday, August 5, at 8 pm in Atlanta Symphony Hall.”

        Then there’s Omaha. Surely she didn’t appear with the Omaha Symphony… Oops! Shhh! Yes she did. Their season runs from September to June, but a few of them were hanging around town. Here’s the start of the article: “OMAHA – For the fifth anniversary of the Holland Performing Arts Center, the Omaha Symphony presented Jackie Evancho, the 11-year-old operatic prodigy on Friday night.” You can read the rest at:

        Finally we’re at Dallas. I was there, too, sitting close enough to the Concertmaster to read the titles on the sheet music on his music stand. Curiously, there was no published program, and I wanted to write down the playlist to post on the classical-crossover.co.uk website. Anyway, this is your last chance. Rats, the buzzer went off! I’ll quote the postcard (with a picture of Jackie Evancho on the front) that the Dallas Symphony mailed-out to its subscribers. The caption reads: “Jackie Evancho with the DSO”. But all is not lost.

        You were right about the “different conductor” though. Constantine Kitsopoulos was the guest conductor at all of Jackie’s appearances. He first saw her perform while he was conducting the Boca Raton Festival Of The Arts Orchestra during the aforementioned “Night At The Opera” where the Sun Valley Symphony director was “blown away”. Apparently he was too, because when he heard about the plans for a summer tour by Jackie, he volunteered to conduct all of the performances.

        During the Dallas concert the interplay between conductor Kitsopoulos and Jackie was continuous. He closely watched her as she performed, and paced the orchestra around her. She looked to him for cues. The smiles and encouragement he gave her after each piece (during the eleven increasingly longer and louder standing ovations) showed the fondness and respect that had developed between them during the tour. Before she took the stage after the intermission, he took the time to tell the audience what an honor and a privilege it had been for him to have been a part of the tour, what an inspiration she had been to him, and that she would likely be that to the next generation’s music as well.

        ‘Pretty heady stuff to say about an eleven year-old. But that doesn’t come from her childlike charisma. That comes from her being a consummate professional in every sense of the word except age…as well as having stage-presence, a genuine love for what she is doing, and a desire to make people happy by doing it. That she hasn’t had to sweat the years of practice and disappointment “like everybody else” has no bearing. She’s an autodidact, a natural, and I’m going to call her a genius, with her very own spot on the bell-shaped curve that makes it impossible to group her with anyone else. The “rules” just don’t apply to her. And don’t worry for her voice. It is being watched carefully, her material is being chosen carefully, and she does, and will continue to use a microphone because arias from operas are only a part of her growing repertoire.

        I can’t wait to see her perform when she’s 30 (if I live that long). I’m certain that the experience will be just the same as what it was last Wednesday, where over 2000 people (2/3 of which were subscribers, and really didn’t know what to expect beforehand) nearly blew the roof off of the Meyerson Symphony Hall because of what they saw, heard, and experienced from an amazing performer who just happens to be eleven years old.

        I don’t know where you live, Janey, but if you’re near New York City, try to get tickets to her performance at Avery Fisher Hall. Mr. Lebrecht, you as well. It’s the only way that you might have a chance of allaying, or at least tempering your doubts of what Jackie Evancho is as a performer. Her date with the Pittsburgh Opera is already sold-out. Or come to Las Vegas on December 29th, where David Foster has reserved the12,000 seat Mandalay Bay Events Center for an evening with just Jackie, David, an as-yet unnamed tenor, and orchestra. You might like to know that the “Great Performances – Dream With Me” concert has been one of the most successful pledge inducements for PBS stations ever. It will be interesting to see how it sells in general release starting September 13th. The Dream With Me CD is certified Gold, and well on the way to Platinum. The new Christmas CD just announced is just as certain to do that as well. And be sure to watch the America’s Got Talent Finale on September 14th, where Jackie will perform “Nessum Dorma”, along with Tony Bennett and Queen Latifa showcasing their piece on Tony’s soon-to-be-released “Duets II” album. A duet with a certain young lady just might end up as the Bonus Track on that album as well.

        Take care!

      • Charles Hoff says:

        I’ll try again, this time keeping it short.

        Janey, Jackie did indeed sing with the Atlanta Symphony (it was announced on their official website), the Omaha Symphony (again referenced on an Omaha news website), as well as the Dallas Symphony (the announcement of her performance was mailed on DSO postcards to its subscribers).

        In Chicago, she sang at the Ravinia Festival with the Ravinia Festival Orchestra. At Sun Valley, she opened the summer concert series with the Sun Valley Summer Symphony Orchestra, the executive director of which, Jennifer Teisinger, had seen Jackie perform at the Boca Raton Festival of Arts. If you consider these “pick-up” orchestras, I can only assume that you are, for some reason attempting to diminish the validity of Jackie’s performances.

        The conductor for all of her summer concert series was Constantine Kitsopoulos, who first experienced Jackie as he conducted the orchestra for the program: “A Night at the Opera: Jackie Evancho, John Tessier, and Young Stars of the Metropolitan Opera with Boca Raton Symphonia”. When he heard of plans for a concert tour, he volunteered to conduct for all of her appearances.

        I have all of the references should you be interested (the website filters URL’s when comments are posted).

        I don’t know what orchestra will be playing for her at Avery Fisher Hall, but perhaps you could attend and let those of us who won’t be there know. I think that tickets are still available. Her appearance with the Pittsburgh Opera (and its orchestra) is sold-out

      • GabrielArcAngel says:

        Ms. Janey

        No need to diminish as you stated “Those were pick-up orchestras under a different conductor.”
        These are classically trained musicians, Please show some respect and maybe Jackie has a confort level with her conductor Constantine Kitsopoulos. After all she performs 9 songs with no sheet music,
        proper vocal pitch,phasing,timing and all from memory!(WOW)

        Jackie Evancho can look to another child prodigy Beverly Sills who mastered 22 operatic arias by age 7
        and had a long productive career
        http://www.answers.com/topic/beverly-sills

        Good Day!
        Good Day!

  • Chuck says:

    Thank you, Janet. I’m glad you staightened the CSO thing out per Jackie Evancho’s Ravinia performance. The orchestra was indeed part of the CSO with pick ups.

    Everybody hopes Jackie doesn’t end with a damaged voice, but for now, there’s no reason to think that will happen. In the mean time she has brought bright and sunny days to thousands, if not millions of people.

    Jackie has more than “potential” to be something truly extraordinary someday. She is something truly extraordinary right now. There are adult vocalist that only wish they had her 11 year old voice. She is now.

  • Dan Regnier says:

    re: JE / Dallas

    I was there in Dallas. I have attended many concerts in my life, mostly Rock concert’s. That concert hall was ROCKIN’ wednesday night. The whole house on their feet, not just “Jackieville”. That girl knows how to connect and become one with the material she is singing and the folks in the venues seated before her see that and respond accordingly.

    Jackie seems to have an ability to take her life’s experience’s, however short, and interweave those childhood
    emotions (remember when you where a child — little things to us adults are often big things to children) into
    the material she is singing.

    There are many great adult pro singers that can hit all the high and low notes, but many lack that connection with the music and the people. Those singers seem too sing to people. Jackie sings for people. Jackie is a vessel delivering a story. Those who sat in the first couple of rows report they saw tears in her eyes as she
    sang ‘The Impossible Dream’. When she sings she is so absorbed into the material its impossible to take your
    eyes off of her.

    Chuck said “…There are adult vocalist that only wish they had her 11 year old voice”…. I agree.

    And just think, she is getting better and better and better. Wait till she is allowed to use more of her huge range, perhaps after puberty.

    Have a great day!

  • Charles Hoff says:

    My apologies. The websites that I included as references to my reply to Janey were filtered when I clicked “POST COMMENT”, and left a few conspicuous holes. However, I did keep an intact copy of my post, and have additional references should there be any question about what I have written.

  • Charles Hoff says:

    And now I see that my reply “awaiting moderation” has disappeared. Why?

  • Dan Regnier says:

    Question.

    Should modern symphony orchestra’s performing pieces by Mozart, Bach, Handel, Beethoven, etc…use
    only period instruments? In other words, horns without valves, harpsichord’s or traditional piano forte vs. modern concert piano, gut strings vs modern strings, etc…, etc…?
    How about tuning instruments to the tuning standards for which the piece was written?
    How about keeping the ratio between instruments historically correct?
    Many sacred songs where written for castrated males to keep there voices from breaking. Who
    should sing those songs today?

    I ask these questions because I recently purchased a two cd package by Coviello Classics. Gerrit Zitterbart
    and Matthias Metzger perform Beethoven’s Sonatas opp. 23, 24 and op. 47 for piano and violin in two
    versions on authentic and modern instruments. There is a difference, most notably the piano forte and
    the modern concert piano. The traditional piano forte sounds more like a harpsichord than a modern
    concert piano.

    That means todays listeners of modern orchestras are hearing all this modern stuff and not the “real deal” as the great composer’s of centuries past have written.

    Thank you.

    • Dan,
      The great composers are great because they wrote great music. I don’t think that interpretations, modern instruments, or other variables can change that. That’s what makes it classical to a large degree. The formal aspects of the music (how it’s composed) are always evolving, but great composers work well with all those limitations on their craft, and great performers always rise to interpretation in the same way; they are two halve of a whole, i.e. great compositions need great interpretation and vice versa. I think we live in a time of acceptable mediocrity, so many modern composers are not writing great music that great performers can sink their teeth into, and consequently audience can love. These are the same problems in connecting with an audience as was true in the early 20th century. If composers would write more great music – crossover wouldn’t be necessary. I think todays audience wants new music but they expect, and rightly so, that that music be as impressive as the classical literature. I don’t use the word impressive lightly. There are many ways a composer can write today, but I think it’s a responsibility that all composers make a good try to write at least one great piece for the audience. Experiments are fine, we learn a lot about the new future, and if composer want to take that path, they must live with the consequences. I think this is the same dismissal of what an audience wants by composers as has always been around. It would serve everyone well if that were the mindset. To put it a bit more bluntly, blame it on todays composers, since composers are ultimately responsible for “carrying the torch” of great writing and the audience will recognize it without crossing over. Think about what the term crossing over implies – giving up on greatness. I don’t think Beethoven did that, and his music still impresses an audience and puts most composers to shame.

      • Dan Regnier says:

        Justin,
        Thanks for your reply. I do agree that they wrote great music and it is still great when modern instruments are used. But it’s not really authentic unless the listener can hear what it sounded like to the patrons of that period.
        I am looking forward to a symphony using period instruments, dress and outdoor venues. Outdoor venues –
        now thats authentic. I believe a composer centuries ago believed music should be played out of doors because music needs to breath. I realize that is not practical but nonetheless I love this composers thinking.

        Another musician of the past said that “music is frozen architecture”. The modern symphony orchestra, when playing a period piece just melted a piece of “frozen architecture” and reshaped it into another
        piece of “frozen architecture” . The piece may still be beautiful but it is not the classical piece it once was. The piece may have been played exactly as written as far as tempo and the placement of notes, but it now has a different tone and feel because of the modern instrument and large size of the modern orchestra. The modern symphony orchestra when playing period pieces is indeed, the definition of “classical crossover”.

  • Thank you for acknowledging Jackie Evancho

    Besides what many think we Jackie needs legitimate classical commentators (Norman L.) to be accepted
    in the traditional classical community.

    Trash TV or Simon Cowelll’s AGT is the only person who can bring “classical music” to prime time network
    television and be summer’s #1 hit.

    Good Day
    Sir

  • Janey says:

    Here we go again. Verbal diarrhea abounds. What a discredit to a young girl with incredible potential.

    The Atlanta Symphony doesn’t work in August. Is was a pick-up orchestra. But, frankly, I don’t care. I was merely pointing out the the actual full-time Atlanta Symphony Orchestra did not play for Ms. Evancho, no matter what PR designed to sell tickets says. The season ended in June and opens in September – all concerts in between that time are an alternative, second-string orchestra.

    I don’t mean to diminish the musicians, who I’m sure are top-notch. But, this fudging of facts – saying she played with the symphonies (although they weren’t the actual first-string symphonies), and is performing “at Lincoln Center,” are all slight fudges of reality. Her concert at Avery Fisher Hall does not appear on their calendar for a reason.

    I won’t respond again. I find Jackie Evancho’s fans to be obsessive and slightly frightening.

    • Charles Hoff says:

      My dear Janey,
      Are you now being deliberately obtuse when you’ve been called on your wrong assertions? Are you now just going to call everyone names (me in particular) and run away? That is the very worst form of intellectual dishonesty.

      I “fudged” nothing. I offered (and still offer) references for everything I wrote. Please tell us all how you know so much better than the people producing the shows. And you state that you are frightened? Of what? Of me encouraging you to go to one of Jackie’s performances to see what all of the fuss is about? That’s a knee-knocker if ever I’ve read one. Apparently would you rather languish in your preconceptions, and hang on to the falsehoods that so easily spawned from your keyboard. Pity.

      You were correct in writing that the Atlanta and Omaha Symphonies were both in-between seasons, but they *did* come together to accompany this very special performer. Look at the Atlanta Symphony official website! It’s there! It is *them* playing — not some “pick-up” group as you assert. Just add the three letters and a period to the front of: atlantasymphony.org/ConcertsAndTickets/Calendar/2011Summer/Jackie-Evancho.aspx

      As for Omaha, Jackie’s performance coincided the the 5th anniversary of the Holland Performing Arts Center. Hers was a SPECIAL PERFORMANCE *with* the Omaha Symphony. Read the article at (add the three letters and a period first) to southwestiowanews.com/articles/2011/09/02/council_bluffs/entertainment/doc4e5fa9e6979bc818129657.txt

      For Dallas, have one of the mailed post cards announcing “Jackie Evancho with the DSO” in front of me. But the DSO website also has the same announcement. The URL starts with https, colon, two forward slashes and dallassymphony.com/season-tickets/single-tickets/special-concerts-events/productions/jackie-evancho.aspx (no 3 w’s)

      It’s there for you to see unless you are hopelessly intellectually dishonest. Even so, I still want for you and Mr. Lebrecht to see Jackie in concert. Just once. If that “frighten”s you, then perhaps some counseling is in order. If you don’t like what you see, at least you’ll be posting an opinion based on personal knowledge, and not conjecture.

      And if you have an ounce of integrity in you, I expect a posted apology.

    • PG Antioch says:

      Janey,

      You said
      “Her concert at Avery Fisher Hall does not appear on their calendar for a reason.”

      Just thought i’d let you know that her concert appears on the Lincoln Center website’s calendar:

      lincolncenter.org/search_results.asp?SpecificDate=2011-11-7

      You’ll of course need to add hypertext transmission protocol, colon, 2 slashes, the 3 w’s & dot at the beginning.

      Have a nice day.

      • Janey says:

        That is Lincoln Center – very different thing. But thank you.

        • PG Antioch says:

          Janey-

          If you’d read the page, it specifically says it’s at Avery Fisher Hall. I’m perfectly aware there are many venues at Lincoln Center, & Avery Fisher is one of them. Your assertion is like saying the alphabet & the letter D are very different things. Yes, they are different, but D is clearly part of the alphabet.

          Is it with the NY Philharmonic? No, the orchestra has every Monday off, & November 7th is a Monday. The Phil shares Avery Fisher with other organizations for other events. That’ll give you a golden opportunity to insult the professional musicians who play behind Jackie by calling them a “pick-up orchestra.”

          • Janey says:

            There is no shame in playing in a pick-up orchestra. Why do you believe there is?

          • PG Antioch says:

            Janey-

            Let me quote you:
            <>

            and
            <>

            These comments, & even using quotation marks for “full orchestra of some sort,” sound disdainful to me, especially considering the sceptical comments you have about Jackie in the following paragraph:
            <>

            Your last sentence strikes me as especially odd, since you evidently haven’t seen her live or observed very much of her recent recorded music. How exactly can you be so certain about the source of her charisma?

            If you wanted to point out that the orchestras playing behind Jackie were the off-season orchestras, you could have said just that, “off-season orchestras.” They were playing with the guest conductor who volunteered to perform with Jackie, Constantine Kitsopoulos, as Charles pointed out. You may disagree, but “pick-up orchestra under a different conductor” sounds considerably more pejorative & less respectful than “off-season orchestra with a guest conductor.” I don’t believe there is necessarily any shame in a “pick-up orchestra,” but your earlier comments led me to believe you do. Please forgive me if i am incorrect.

            And
            <>

            Modern scientific medicine has clarified the practices that are & are not harmful to the voice over the long term. Jackie studiously avoids the “belting” & “projection” most likely to harm young voices. ALL singing is potentially dangerous, but Jackie is risking the long-term health of her voice considerably less than thousands & thousands of young singers singing in school plays, choirs, talent shows, with karaoke machines, & even those singing with hair brushes in front of mirrors, imitating their favorite singers.

            Jackie is being watched very carefully by multiple vocal experts, & she is exposing her voice to very little significant danger.

          • PG Antioch says:

            Janey-
            Let’s try that again. I evidently used the wrong punctuation, causing my quotes of your comments to vanish.

            Let me try to quote you again:
            ‘…Jackie Evancho will be appearing, according to an advertisement, “Live at Lincoln Center.” (Lincoln Center is treated as a venue) She is, it seems, singing at Avery Fisher Hall, with a “full orchestra” of some sort.’

            and
            ‘…she didn’t perform with the Atlanta, Chicago and Omaha Symphonies. Those were pick-up orchestras under a different conductor.’

            These comments, & even using quotation marks for “full orchestra of some sort,” sound disdainful to me, especially considering the sceptical comments you have about Jackie in the following paragraph:
            ‘I do wonder if she had been a 30 year old woman whether those 11 standing ovations would have occurred. You say ‘yes,’ but I doubt it. A large part of her “charisma” is the fact that she’s a child.’

            Your last sentence strikes me as especially odd, since you evidently haven’t seen her live or observed very much of her recent recorded music. How exactly can you be so certain about the source of her charisma?

            If you wanted to point out that the orchestras playing behind Jackie were the off-season orchestras, you could have said just that, “off-season orchestras.” They were playing with the guest conductor who volunteered to perform with Jackie, Constantine Kitsopoulos, as Charles pointed out. You may disagree, but “pick-up orchestra under a different conductor” sounds considerably more pejorative & less respectful than “off-season orchestra with a guest conductor.” I don’t believe there is necessarily any shame in a “pick-up orchestra,” but your earlier comments led me to believe you do.

            And
            ‘She…. has the potential to be something truly extraordinary as an adult. I hope, by then, she hasn’t caused herself any damage from singing so young.’

            Modern scientific medicine has clarified the practices that are & are not harmful to the voice over the long term. Jackie studiously avoids the “belting” & “projection” most likely to harm young voices. ALL singing is potentially dangerous, but Jackie is risking the long-term health of her voice considerably less than thousands & thousands of young singers singing in school plays, choirs, talent shows, with karaoke machines, & even those singing with hair brushes in front of mirrors, imitating their favorite singers.

            Jackie is being watched very carefully by multiple vocal experts, & she is exposing her voice to very little significant danger

            Sorry about the multiple posts; the previous one should ideally be deleted, because your quotes were deleted & italics were added for reasons that are obscure to me.

          • Janey says:

            Mr. Antioch,

            Please stop. We don’t agree. We will not agree in the future. The phrase “full orchestra” was a quotation I pulled directly from the advertisement … so I quoted it. A man died today and you go on about these matters. I’ve responded as civilly as I can, but these endless comments are pointless. I think, as I have stated, it is wonderful that you and others enjoy Ms. Evancho. Now, please go and enjoy her music, while I continue to enjoy the music I love.

          • PG Antioch says:

            Janey-
            I have been extremely respectful toward Mr Licitra (& you, for that matter). Maybe in turn you could be respectful toward other musicians, singers & music lovers.

  • Cuivre says:

    I would actually prefer the people with preconceived attitudes such as those displayed here, stay away from Ms. Evancho’s performances. Let them wallow in their passionate ignorance, and let it keep them safe and happy in their own mind. Does “second string” make them not part of the symphony? May we see lawsuits from these Orchestra’s due to false associations and false advertising?

    It was nice to see someone’s false assertions refuted from the actual websites- I would run and hide too.

    • Janey says:

      I’m not hiding. There’s just no arguing with obsessed fans who don’t understand the issue. The orchestra that played for your Ms. Evancho was not the same that plays during the normal season no matter what the advertising said. No self-respecting classical singer would market themselves that way. But I don’t care enough to worry. As I said, Jackie Evancho is very talented, with great potential. I wish her the best.

      • Charles Hoff says:

        “No matter what the advertising said…”

        So, tell us Ms. Janey, just what does your assertion about the orchestras not being the same (though you’re flat wrong) have to do with anything about Jackie’s performances anyway?

        Come on, lady. You threw the smelly stuff out there. Now explain.

        • Janey says:

          Ms. Evancho’s concert was outside of the season. They, of course, may call the orchestra what they want. As I am mourning the death of a wonderful tenor, I see no reason to clog the blog roll with further posts on this issue. I wish Ms. Evancho well and hope that her voice continues to find many fans.

          • PG Antioch says:

            Janey,

            Yes, the orchestra behind Ms Evancho in Dallas was not identical to the in-season orchestra, but i have been told that more than half the musicians that night were from the regular orchestra. More than half the audience was also composed of regular season-ticket holders of the DSO, not Jackie fans. (Or at least they weren’t Jackie fans before the event; Stephanie, who posted above, is only one DSO fan who has apparently also become a Jackie fan. I met others.) Some of the regulars recognized some of the musicians in the orchestra.

            As for Mr Licitra, like i said, requiescat in pace, & wear a helmet if you ride a motorcycle.

          • Janey says:

            Mr. Antioch,

            I was not speaking about Dallas. I have no knowledge of Dallas, given the date. My comments were in regard to the early August concerts. Thank you.

      • Gabriel Arc Angel says:

        Ms. Janey

        Here is the link to Jackie Concert @Dallas accompanying by DSO
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qayluuujauM
        There you can visual assess DSO first hand

        I am sure Jackie appreciates you acknowledgment of her talent!

        Grazie mille! = Thank you very much!

  • Cuivre says:

    So, now Ms. Evancho has no “self-respect”? When you find yourself in the bottom of a deep hole, it is usually wise to stop digging.

  • Arne Wagner says:

    If I’m not mistaken, on the Billboard top 25 for September 10, 2010 (as shown above), there is no single CD that has one full piece of one classical composer. Or, from other point of view, no single CD in that list was recorded because it would add to the classical repertoire.

    There may be good music in this list, but one would have to name new genres for the most of them. “Music with Proven Classical Components” and “Classical All-Time Hits” would be some suggestions.

    I strongly reject the simple usage of the term “crossover”, though.

    Calling each and any (mis)use of classical components “crossover” is as thoughtless as simply calling all of it “classical music”. Good crossover requires proficiency in all of the fields that are to be melted into one, and thus is rare. John McLaughlin’s Shakti would be an example of “quality crossover”: European Rock/Blues and Indian classical music (in this blog, I couldn’t resist starting with an example that doesn’t include European classical music…). Paolo Conte: Swing and Chanson. Gershwin: U.S. pre-Swing Jazz and European classical music. Bernstein’s West Side Story: Classical & Popular. Brahms’ Hungarian Dances: ditto. Mendelssohn Tarantella of Italian Symphony, some Bartok, Mozart Alla Turca, even the last of Bach’s Goldberg Variations: Classical & Folk. And so on and so on.

    I don’t think that many people would speak of these “crossover” examples as being of low quality. So one should not use the same label for “some classical spices put into a market-driven Pop production”, or the like. It’s conceding an unmerited value.

    Whatever, at the end of the day, the bitter truth remains: the sale of “full-fledged classical CDs” is negligible when compared to other music. It’s a crying pity, even if not really unexpected.

  • Dan Regnier says:

    I enjoy symphony music but I have always thought that using modern instruments for period pieces is
    a bit sugary sounding. Kinda like todays auto-tuned ‘Glee’ singers vs the natural sound of Nate King Cole.

    Would love to see a symphony using valveless horns, gut strings, harpsichords, piano fortes, period tuning,
    the proper number and type of instruments used for a period piece, etc…., etc….

    Now, if a piece of music is written today, then of course use all the technology available today.

    The great composers of the early classical period and earlier did not compose using valved horns
    and other innovations like the modern grand concert piano. So a piece written by Handel and played
    by a modern symphony orchestra is kinda cheatin’ . Perhaps a disclaimer should be added
    when a modern symphony orchestra is playing such a piece.

  • PG Antioch says:

    As for Mr Salvatore Licitra, requiescat in pace.

    And if you ride a motorcycle, wear a hemet.

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