Tick the ones you’ve heard most often – a chillout session with Josh Weilerstein.  You mean you only got paid $40,000 for that concert?

News just in from Brazil: the famed municipal theatre of Rio has been forced to postpone its new season until May after the collapse of nearby buildings.

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Teatro Municipal adia em dois meses a temporada 2012 após desabamentos no Centro<br />
Foto: Carlos Ivan / O Globo

Report here in Globo.

Author Norman Lebrecht in conversation with Deborah Borda, president and CEO, Los Angeles Philharmonic Association.

In his new biography, Lebrecht explores the life of the composer who straddled two musical worlds—born into the age of high romanticism and most prolific at a time of artistic revolution. More pictures from the evening here.

Presented in association with The Mahler Project, A Symphonic Cycle for the New World, a project of the Los Angeles Philharmonic.

Why Mahler? Why Mahler? How One Man and Ten Symphonies Changed Our World from ALOUDla on Vimeo.

Director Andreas Kriegenburg likes to get his way in rehearsal.

He’s not afraid of a fight 

and when it gets really boring, he organises a tug-of-war .

This, I think, is the divorce scene from Rheingold 

What divorce? Does it really matter in a post-modern prod?

The magnificent mezzo was toasting the end of Enchanted Isle at the Metropolitan Opera when news reached her that a six year-old boy she had helped a few days ago in a Montessori school had been killed with a methadone dose by his drug-addict mother.

Joyce has posted the following tribute on facebook and twitter:

A few days ago I had the extreme privilege and joy to attend an afternoon at the South Bronx Montessori Charter School. I met 28 amazing children, 5-6 years old, who had all fallen in love with opera via their heroic and passionate teacher, Anne Dopkins. Watching various clips from the Metropolitan Opera’s Enchanted Island, they each started to discover a new and magical world. It was 3 of the most inspiring hours of my life, to interact with these amazing children and witness their intelligence, humor, enthusiasm, passion and imagination first-hand.

Tragically, yesterday, Carlos Rios – one of these astonishing, miraculous little human beings – was killed. My heart weeps for him and for his family, for those precious classmates and for those heroic, overworked teachers. However, my heart is also uplifted, knowing that for a precious few hours during each day at his school, he was respected, encouraged, challenged, taught, and exposed to things far beyond his wildest imagination.

May his family and friends eventually find peace, and may we all continue to live each moment to the fullest – driven to share the joy and love of music and the arts with everyone we meet. We all need it so desperately.

Rest in peace, beautiful, miraculous Carlos.


The Canadian soprano Measha Brueggergosman had emergency heart surgery two years ago when her arteries clogged up. So when venues received notification today that she was cancelling all events for the first first half of the year, there were understandable fears for her health.

Nothing to worry about. Measha’s expecting a baby, according to a Spanish press release UPDATE: Her US publicist has been in touch. This news may be premature. We will update you as we hear more.

Canadian opera star Measha Brueggergosman appears on Canada AM, Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2012.

Here she is two weeks ago on a health-promotion kick on Canada AM.

And this is Measha singing one of my all-time favourites.


And here in the Cathy Berberian role in a touch of John Cage (once MTT finishes his shtick)

The Bavarian State Opera has been flagging up its Ring cycle, which starts at the weekend, conducted by Kent Nagano, his first. The director is Andreas Kriegenburg.

Cast includes Danish Bass-baritone Johan Reuter as Wotan in his House debut, Mezzo Sophie Koch as Fricka, Wolfgang Koch as Alberich, Stefan Margitaas Loge and Aga Mikolaj as Freia. And because it’s February they’ve stripped everyone down to bra and flimsies.

In the first scene, they take away their clothes to be searched for Rhine gold. Then they all climb into boxes.





News just in on the BBC: Robert Maycock has been killed in Kent when his car hit a tree.

Robert, 63, had been music editor of the Independent newspaper and, before that, of Classical Music magazine. I knew him well in both capacities and liked him a lot as a thoughtful, slightly quirky colleague. He was not, as the BBC claims, founding editor of CM, but the successor to the founder. In that job he was known and liked at every level of musical life in the UK, grass to palace.

He wrote a biography of Philip Glass and married a composer, Priti Paintal. he leaves two children. He will be widely missed. More here.


This is Father Phil with his boys cutting into the birthday cake (courtesy of Paula Brochu).

Carnegie Hall’s announcement of its coming series with the resolutely almost all-male Vienna Phil comes with the usual acknowledgement.

The first concert is paid for by Mrs Charles Wrightsman, the other two by the Audrey Love Charitable Foundation.

I wonder whether these generous donors are aware that the orchestra has not admitted a female player since 2007 and has no more than four altogether. Why, I wonder, would women support sexual discrimination against women? Tell me someone, please.

And while on anomalies, the orchestra is ‘celebrating’ 50 years of collaboration with Lorin Maazel. I suppose they won;t mind me reminding them that nobody was celebrating much when Lorin was their boss at the Vienna Opera in the early 1980s. Ars longa, memory shorta.

Here’s the press bumf:


Programs Include Works by Mozart, Sibelius, R. Strauss, E. Strauss, J. Strauss, J. Strauss II,and Maazel’s Orchestral Arrangement of Wagner’s Ring Cycle, The Ring Without Words

Program Information
Friday, March 2 at 8:00 p.m.
Stern Auditorium/Perelman Stage

Lorin Maazel, Conductor

Symphony No. 1 in E Minor, Op. 39
Symphony No. 5 in E-flat Major, Op. 82
Symphony No. 7 in C Major, Op. 105

The Trustees of Carnegie Hall gratefully acknowledge the generosity of Mrs. Charles Wrightsman in support of the 2011-2012 season.


Saturday, March 3 at 8:00 p.m.
Stern Auditorium/Perelman Stage

Lorin Maazel, Conductor

WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART Symphony No. 40 in G Minor, K. 550
RICHARD WAGNER / LORIN MAAZEL The Ring Without Words, for Orchestra

This concert is made possible, in part, by the Audrey Love Charitable Foundation.

The Carnegie Hall Live broadcast series is sponsored by Duff & Phelps.

Please note this concert is being broadcast live on WQXR Radio. ___________________________________

Sunday, March 4 at 2:00 p.m.
Stern Auditorium/Perelman Stage

Lorin Maazel, Conductor

RICHARD STRAUSS Death and Transfiguration, Op. 24
RICHARD STRAUSS Der Rosenkavalier Suite
JOHANN STRAUSS Overture from Die Fledermaus
JOHANN STRAUSS “Csárdás” from Ritter Pázmán
JOHANN STRAUSS Russian March-Fantasy, Op. 353
EDUARD STRAUSS Greetings to Prague, Polka
JOHANN STRAUSS JR. Die Bajadere, Polka, Op. 351
JOHANN STRAUSS JR. Tales from the Vienna Woods Waltz, Op. 325

This concert is made possible, in part, by the Audrey Love Charitable Foundation.

Bank of America is the Proud Season Sponsor of Carnegie Hall.

The Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra and conductor Lorin Maazel have been making music together for 50 years. They will celebrate this special anniversary with three concerts at Carnegie Hall in March, performing music by composers who have figured prominently in their half century of collaboration. These concerts feature works by Mozart, Sibelius, Eduard Strauss, Johann Strauss, Johann Strauss II, and Richard Strauss, as well as Maazel’s orchestral arrangement of Wagner’s Ring cycle,The Ring Without Words.

On Friday, March 2 at 8:00 p.m., Maestro Maazel conducts the orchestra in an all-Sibelius program including symphonies nos. 1, 5, and 7. The following evening, Saturday, March 3 at 8:00 p.m., they play Mozart’s Symphony No. 40 in G Minor as well as Maazel’s The Ring Without Words arrangement of Wagner’s Ring cycle. They conclude their series on Sunday, March 4 at 2:00 p.m. with Richard Strauss’s Death and Transfiguration and Der Rosenkavalier Suite along with music by Eduard Strauss, Johann Strauss and Johann Strauss II.

The March 3 concert will also be broadcast across the US and worldwide on Carnegie Hall Live—a radio broadcast and digital series which is a partnership of WQXR, Carnegie Hall, and American Public Media (APM). The concert will air live on WQXR 105.9 FM in New York and stream live at wqxr.org. The concert will also broadcast live in more than 35 markets across the nation, including Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, Miami, Minneapolis, Cleveland, Cincinnati, San Antonio, Pittsburgh, Salt Lake City, and Austin, among others. A complete list of stations may be found here. For more information on this and the other Carnegie Hall Live broadcasts throughout the 2011–2012 season, please visit carnegiehall.org/wqxr.

About the Artists
For over five decades, Lorin Maazel has been one of the world’s most esteemed and sought-after conductors. Music Director of the New York Philharmonic from 2002 through 2009, he assumes the same post with the Munich Philharmonic at the start of the 2012–2013 season. Maestro Maazel founded and serves as artistic director of a festival based on his farm property in Virginia, the Castleton Festival. He is also a highly regarded composer, with a wide-ranging catalogue of works written primarily over the last dozen years. He has conducted more than 150 orchestras in no fewer than 5,000 opera and concert performances and has made over 300 recordings, including symphonic cycles or complete orchestral works of Beethoven, Brahms, Debussy, Mahler, Schubert, Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninoff, and Richard Strauss, winning ten Grands Prix du Disques. Mr. Maazel’s discography also includes a range of violin recordings. He is the recipient of two ASCAP awards for contributions to American music and has made appearances in every major music center and at every prominent festival internationally.

The architect Roman Halter, author of Roman’s Journey and a tireless educator in Holocaust history, has died in London, 67 years after his liberation.

A mild man with a quizzical look, he was the sole survivor of his entire family. He was 85; may he rest in peace.

Roman's Journey by Roman Halter


A study at Northwestern University indicates that older people with a music background suffer less from age-related neural damage. The study was specifically aimed at hearing loss, but may apply to other faculties. Read on here.