More than 30,000 people have signed a petition to the European Union, asking it to secure more money for artists who are paid a pittance or nothing every time their work is accessed online.

It’s called the Fair Internet Campaign.

You can sign here.


The college orchestra has announced its European tour of the century for May next year, visiting Helsinki, Bremen, Berlin, Dresden, Salzburg, and Vienna.

Minnesota’s Osmo Vänskä will conduct. Peter Serkin will play Brahms’s first piano concerto.

In the other concerto,  Penderecki’s Concerto doppio, the soloists will be Benjamin Schmid (Violin) and Roberto Díaz (viola). Mr Díaz is president and CEO of the Curtis Institute of Music.

Not impressed? Then name another college president who goes out on the road in a contemporary concerto.

Valladolid, 20/5/2015. Roberto Diaz en el CCMD. Foto Ricardo Otazo.

John Donnelly, 64, was found dead in Turkish holiday resort in June.

Two local men were charged today with his murder.

John had been an amateur music director, active with the Association of Irish Musical Societies and the Wexford Light Opera Society.


First birthday greetings from the LA Phil president to her infant neighbour.


Bobby Breen was an RKO star in the late 1930s, briefly a rival to Shirley Temple.

Then his voice broke, and war broke out.

He got a life, was house pianist for the NBC Symphony Orchestra, then became a talent agent in Florida.

Bobby died this week, aged 88.


Frederick Tinsley, 76, played 42 years in the Philharmonic, joining the double-bass section in 1974.

Before that, he deputised in the New York Philharmonic.

The cause of his death is not known.

Our sympathies to his family and colleagues.


A survey by New York singers’ agent Doug Schwalbe reveals that the leading North American orchestras are still desperately dependent on a tiny handful of dead white males.

Doug looks at performances by seven orchestras – NY Phil, LA Phil, Boston, San Fran, Toronto, Philadelphia and Dallas – since 2011.

He reports that Beethoven and Mozart accounted for over 15% of  the 9,676 pieces performed.

That proportion rises to 24% when he adds Tchaikovsky and Brahms.

And you wonder why people have stopped going.


tchaikovsky death mask


Contact  to see the full charts.

The Seoul Philharmonic has been headless since Myung Whun Chung quit after being forced to defend himself on baseless charges put up by the former chief exec.

Since then, the orchestra has been avoided by leading conductors, with one notable exception.

Today they have announced two new principal conductors, Thierry Fischer of the Utah Symphony (pictured) and Markus Stenz, of the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic.

They will be known respectively as principal guest conductor and conductor-in-residence.

The music director chalice is still seen to be poisoned.


There’s an ingenious project going down in Vancouver, Canada, where the City Opera is a putting together a show made up of all the operas that Mozart started and never got to finish.

The Lost Operas of Mozart, constructed by artistic director (and Carlos Kleiber biographer) Charles Barber, is such a surefire hit that you wonder why no-one ever thought of doing it before.

Among other cameo roles at the world premiere is one for Vancouver music director, Bramwell Tovey.


Can we take that one more time a little softer, Maestro?

press release:

The MacArthur Foundation announced the 2016 MacArthur Fellows today, commonly known as the “genius grants,” and this year’s class includes composer Julia Wolfe. Julia and 22 other Fellows will receive a no-strings-attached $625,000 grant for their exceptional creativity and potential for future contributions to their fields.

Julia Wolfe is a composer reimagining American folk traditions and lore in large-scale narrative compositions that synthesize various musical styles, movement, and imagery. Wolfe is deeply interested in legendary narratives, and she uses oral histories and historical documents as a backbone for many of her pieces. She is also a leading arts entrepreneur and plays a key role in fostering the creation and production of contemporary classical music.


Julia Wolfe, 57 is Associate Professor of Music Composition, Department of Music and Performing Arts, Steinhardt School, New York University. She specialises in American labour and its history.

There was a public announcement in France yesterday that the fast-rising ‘Cité musicale départementale de Boulogne-Billancourt – île Seguin’ in the west of Paris is to be renamed.

And about time, too.

The new name: La Seine Musicale.

Not to be confused with the excellent Canadian classical website of near-identical name.

Think again.