Amid mounting conflict between the Maduro government and the country’s citizens, Venezuela’s cultural ambassador has broken his silence to call on the regime to set egos and ideology aside and find a solution.

This is the first time he has spoken out on the collapsing political situation.
Dudamel says: ‘I share with you my concern about the events of my country. I call on political leaders to find the necessary ways to solve the crisis in Venezuela.’

We reported bad blood last year at the Slovene Philharmonic Orchestra where the chief conductor Uroš Lajovic was accused of being verbally abusive towards his musicians, allegedly calling them ‘lazy dogs’.

Lajovic, 72, denied any bad conduct.

Yesterday, after a five-month stand-off, he resigned.

A retired professor of conducting at the University of Performing Arts in Vienna, Lajovic taught Kirill Petrenko, incoming chief of the Berlin Philharmonic.

This is Robin Ticciati this morning, presenting his first season as chief conductor of DSO.

An orchestra, he said, stands for community, not clicks and uncertainty.

Amid concern for Dmitry Hvorostovsky, whom she is supporting in the performance, it has been overlooked hat tonight will mark the Canadian debut of the Russian soprano and her husband, Yusif Eyvazov.

‘Usually we perform in the United States and we never get any further, but now we are and we’re happy!’ says Anna.

The concert, at Toronto’s Four Seasons Centre, is completely sold out.

Dutch press release:

Pentatone is pleased to announce a multiple-release collaboration with the Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg, and their conductor, Gustavo Gimeno. The first two titles of the series, Bruckner (Symphony No. 1 and 4 Orchestral Pieces) and Shostakovich (Symphony No. 1 and other short pieces) will be released in May, with a third release later in 2017. Conceptually tying together the albums in the series is the idea of pairing major works with lesser-known music from the same composer, and at least six further projects are planned for the coming years.

photo: Alfonso Salgueiro

In April 2004, at then-Avery Fisher Hall, the conductor took a bow in the middle of a long, new work by Nathan Currier and led the soloists off stage after a union representative signalled that the orchestra, the Brooklyn Philharmonic, were going into overtime.

The incident provoked litigation from the composer, in which he is now claiming victory. A settlement has been reached giving Currier the rights to a recording of his Gaian Variations.

 

‘I suspect many in my field are bemused as to why I bothered pursuing this so long,’ says Currier. ‘It certainly isn’t from litigiousness, vanity, anger or the like: it’s just what got me to write the piece in the first place, or to put in personal funds when the organizations involved didn’t raise the money, and that is that the material behind the work is beautiful, but also utterly obligatory, if you want your grandchildren to have lives on planet Earth.’

You may read more of his account here.

 

The outspoken violinist talks about the two most important maestros in his life in a new DG video:

The Hamburg GMD has called in sick for the next fortnight.

Eliahu Inbal will take over the prized opportunity of Mahler’s Symphony of 1,000.

The German conductor Karl-Heinz Steffens, appointed just eight months ago as music director of Norwegian Opera, has announced he will leave once the new chief executive takes over.

Steffens said he had been unable to establish ‘fruitful dialogue’ with Annilese Miskimmon over artistic planning.

Miskimmon wants to cut the number of staff singers, among other economies.

 

 

Steffens will leave when his contract expires next year. His resignation letter, leaked to Aftenposten, reads (in Google translate):

When Per Boye Hansen’s successor, Annilese Miskimmon, was appointed in December 2015, I was keen and open to a dialogue with her about the future. Now, more than a year after we first made contact, I have concluded that further cooperation between us will not be possible, and I’ve decided not to extend my contract when it expires in August 2018.

Unfortunately I have not managed to get to a fruitful dialogue with Miskimmon about the artistic planning. Moreover, I find a lack of respect for music boss’s position and influence in the opera’s artistic development.

I have tried to improve cooperation, but unfortunately without result. Because we have not managed to create a basis for the mutual trust that is necessary in any artistic endeavour, I have concluded that it is best for all concerned that I shall retire as head of music when my contract expires.

I am very sorry that it is necessary to take this step, because I know it will disappoint many of my colleagues. Artistically speaking, the experiences I have made myself in Oslo, has been very rewarding. Once again I want to especially commend the musicians in the orchestra for their work and dedication, which I appreciate enormously.

Full letter here. It’s a model of its kind.

Arizona Opera is reeling.

A modest plan for one new opera a year has won a million-dollar donation from a pair of fans.

Read here.

Marlon Daniel will conduct the National Symphony Orchestra in Havana on April 30.

Is he the first American since 1959 to lead Cuba’s premier classical ensemble?

Will Trump try to stop him?

Born on April 25, 1917, at Newport News, Virginia, died of diabetes complications in Beverly Hills,  California, June 15, 1996.

Never to be forgotten.