George Butterworth was the composer of English country life.

A lieutenant with Durham Light Infantry, he was shot by sniper at the Battle of Pozières on August 5, 1916.

george butterworth

This recording, by John Shirley-Quirk, Martin Isepp and the LPO, conducted by Sir Adrian Boult, was issued by Decca on the 50th anniversary of his death.

From the Lebrecht Album of the Week:

The most successful and elusive of Gustav Mahler’s inner circle, Bruno Walter was ranked among the best conductors of his time, respected by the jealous and mutually hostile Toscanini and Furtwängler and showered with offers when he arrived in the US as a Hitler refugee in 1939….

Like many others in the podium, he tried his hand at composing.

Was he any good? Read the full review here.

And here. As well as here.

bruno Walter

The Bergische Symphony, serving the towns of Remscheid and Solingen, has been in trouble for as long as Slippedisc can remember. But now the town mayors are drawing a red line on the forecourt.

The orchestra is losing a steady 300,000 Euros a year. That has to stop, says the mayors. Or the music stops.

Read here.


This is Alex Klein’s first day back at work as principal oboe of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.

Alex resigned from the orchestra in 2004 after two fingers in his left hand were afflicted with focal dystonia. Over time, back home in Brazil, he learned to manage the condition by adjusting the keys on his oboe.

He won his seat back at audition last month.

Tonight, he can be heard at the Ravinia Festival.


alex klein

It’s not clear what has happened to the experienced Diego Fasolis, whose name is on the playbills, but Edinburgh’s Norma has called in Gianluca Capuano to conduct the three festival performances, starting tonight.

This is a very late replacement.

Capuano is a Milanese baroque scholar, founder of the ensemble Il canto di Orfeo,.




The weekly diary of Anthea Kreston, violinist of the Artemis Quartet



anthea bike


I am in full vacation mode – or at least as close to it as I can be. We have a 30 days together as a family – albeit with practice and prep for upcoming concerts. I have been enjoying the NYT “Intentional Summer” column, and we are doing 30 new things in these 30 days – trying to get out to all areas of Berlin, turning off the phone/directions – recognizing landmarks and exploring. From jumping in a lake to exploring a funky antiques market we have been having a blast.

I have missed cooking – I have been too busy – and in this past week my taste buds have become extremely nostalgic and needy. Jason has been telling his mom, and every day a package has shown up from her (she has apparently subscribed to Prime) – peanut butter, baking soda, brown sugar, vanilla, bisquick, chocolate chips. I have also decided to make the 5 new “Mother Sauces” from the NYT Cooking – and spent the morning today on my bike – going from one small ethic market to another searching out my ingredients (hint: nutritional yeast isn’t a known quantity). I have, on my fridge, a menu from Laughing Planet, an extremely creative organic restaurant in Oregon that we used to frequent – they have dinosaurs on the tables. I have been trying to recreate the menu, and the girls “order” their quinoa/sweet potato/tzatziki wraps from me. Also – a Cafe Yumm menu – and I have plans to recreate their signature sauce tomorrow. We pretend to be at one of these restaurants together, then talk through our pretend walk home in Corvallis – stopping at our favorite bakery and book store on the way.

I had a breakthrough this week. Well – I thought it was a fluke, but then it happened again. I spoke on the phone to the Internet company IN GERMAN.  Well – barely in German – but somehow – somehow – we understood each other. Then, a day later, I had to call to cancel a doctor appointment for my older daughter. Again in German. Such bad bad Germany. I was drenched in sweat by the end, and at one point I thought all was lost, and I started to walk towards Jason, eyebrows up, extending the phone, but he backed up and shook his head. I stuck to it. And I made it.

I just got off the phone with Fred Child from Performance Today (American Public Media). He has invited me on their Performance Today tour of Italy in May of 2017, as their guest soloist. A week in a gorgeous boat, and I will be playing concerts for them every couple of days – what an honor and a pleasure.

Tomorrow – Children’s Museum and a bike ride through Grunewald with the double in-line trailer for the girls. Staycation!

, arts editor of the contrarian Spectator and a notable advocate of advanced modern music, went to Salzburg for The Exterminating Angel.

His review breaks ranks with the massed British hallelujahs, attacking Ades for not being daring or modern enough in his score.

It is a fine review:

Such is the sadism of the vocal score, you don’t immediately realise this is an all-star cast (Christine Rice, Iestyn Davies, Thomas Allen, John Tomlinson…). The work prohibits showing off. It also shouts what is meant to be whispered. In the film, as the tale turns feral, the voices turn inward, so that by the end it is hard to know what is being said and what is being dreamed. No possibility of confusing the two in this production. Vocally everything is bellowed; visually too. Legibility — in Hildegard Bechtler’s set designs, in Tom Cairns’ direction for Salzburg Festival — flattens Buñuel’s subliminal hints and winks.

Worth reading in full, here.

It’s just one person’s view, of course, and Igor is a very good kicker against the pricks.

(Myself, I opted for the seaside rather than Salzburg, having been put off by Ades’s previous opera, The Tempest, which seemed to do all the things an opera ought to, without ever actually becoming an opera.

Also, one man’s view. I will see the Exterminator in London next spring.)



Spanish musicians are abuzz with the news that David Rejano Cantero has been chosen as principal trombone of the Los Angeles Philharmonic.

David, who is principal trombone of Valery Gergiev’s Munich Philharmonic, has been freelancing of late with the Berlin Phil and LA. There has been no confirmation yet from LA.

Cool catch.David_Rejano-1


Message from Gaetano Lo Coco, 20 years old and music director of the Rossini 2016 Young Artists’ Opera Festival in London:

On 12 September 2016 we will be putting on a spectacular staging of The Barber of Seville at Cadogan Hall, featuring some of the most talented young singers from across the world, who have already debuted in international opera houses including the ENO, Glyndebourne, La Fenice (Venice) and Cape Town Opera.

What is particularly exciting is that Rossini wrote his comic masterpiece when he was only 23 and all the musicians and artists involved in our festival, performing in our Barber, are just as young. 2016 is the 200th anniversary of the opera and we are daunted and honoured in equal measure to be performing it in such an historic year.

gaetano lo coco