Ik-Hwan Bae, a South Korean violinist who made his Seoul Philharmonic debut aged 12, died today. A Juilliard graduate, he came second at the 1985 Reine Elisabeth and went on to form his own chamber orchestra in Korea. He was a sought-after teacher at Peabody, IU, Manhattan and Seoul.


ik-Hwan Bae






No-one is threatening a work stoppage. Peter Gelb is threatening a lockout. This is a barefaced distortio.

Watch the interview, boring and unchallenged as it is. (Click on the blue word ‘Post’ if video does not pop out.))



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h/t: Schleppy

Yuja Wang, the Chinese pinaist, made her name in the Hollywood Bowl three years ago in a scrap of orange.

She was back last night, having refreshed the wardrobe. The new outfits:

yuja wang salonen-bowl-la0018975206-20140717                    yuja wang-salonen-bowl-la0018975203-20140717

photo credit: (Lawrence K. Ho / Los Angeles Times)


Mark Swed’s review here.


One more (or less):


yuja wang-salonen-bowl-la0018975205-20140717


The Hungarian virtuoso Ervin Schiffer, viola player of the Haydn Quartet and its forerunner, the Dekany Quartet, has died at the age of 82.

Born in Hungary, he moved to Holland and taught there at the leading conservatories.

Our condolences to his wife and quartet partner Kati Sebestyen (pictured).


ervin schiffer

The Polish government has cancelled all cultural exchanges with Russia for next year.

‘The Council of Ministers decided to call off the Polish Year in Russia and the Russian Year in Poland, planned for 2015,’ said government spokesperson Malgorzata Kidawa-Blonska. ‘This is the decision of the government, but both the foreign and culture ministers – Radoslaw Sikorski and Malgorzata Omilanowska respectively – unequivocally came to the conclusion that in [this] situation [after the MH167 disaster], it is impossible to follow through […] with the organisation of the Polish Year in Russia.’

The cultural cooperation agreement was signed only last December.


Soccer Euro 2012 Poland Russia

The letter sent by Peter Gelb to every member of Metropolitan Opera staff was ostensibly intended to give advance warning of a lockout that will ensue if their unions do not agree to Gelb’s cuts by the end of next week.

Its real purpose was to make ordinary people think about the personal cost of a lockout to themselves and their families, to drive a wedge of anxiety between individual workers and their union negotiators.

Fear is the oldest tactic in the HR book and Gelb is wielding it because he has nothing else up his sleeve.

The one person who has not considered the personal cost of a lockout is Peter Gelb. With the board rock-solid behind him, he is confident that a lockout will eventually deliver the savings he requires.

He is almost certainly wrong. The 1980 Met lockout ended after six weeks in a management capitulation. The Minnesota Orchestra lockout ended with the dismissal of its manager, Michael Henson, who had enjoyed full board support for more than a whole confrontational year. A lockout would be the worst thing that can possibly happen to Peter Gelb.

Only the unions can now save him from that disaster.

peter gelb1


Norman Leyden fronted the Oregon Symphony’s pop concerts for 34 years – and made the arrangements that are still used today.

norman leyden


Lois Dick was a singer in Rodgers and Hammerstein musicals, until the lights went on.

In 1963, she co-founded Madison Opera and became its leading diva.

Obituary here.


lois dick