Browsing: Classical

Paul E. Robinson Vivaldi: Concerto in C major for Recorder, Strings and Continuo RV 444 Vivaldi: Concerto in C major for Recorder, Strings and Continuo RV 443 Mahler: Symphony No. 6 in A minor Erik Bosgraaf, recorder Dallas Symphony Orchestra/Jaap van Zweden Meyerson Symphony Center Dallas, Texas March 1, 2013 It was an interesting weekend. On Friday night, I heard the Dallas Symphony under its music director Jaap van Zweden performing Mahler’s massive Sixth Symphony at the Meyerson SymphonyCenter in preparation for its European tour. The next day I drove 250 miles down I-45 to hear a concert performance of…

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by Paul E. Robinson   From left to right: Mark Ivanir, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Christopher Walken, Catherine Keener A Late Quartet Director: Yaron Zilberman Cast: Philip Seymour Hoffman/Christopher Walken/Catherine Keener/Mark Ivanir Music: Beethoven: String Quartet Op. 131   Moonrise Kingdom Director: Wes Anderson Cast: Bruce Willis/Bill Murray/Ed Norton/Frances McDormand Music: Britten: Noyes’ Flood/Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra/Songs for Friday Afternoons/A Midsummer Night’s Dream (excerpts)   Films about classical music composers and performers are nearly always risible in the extreme. Think Song Without End (1960) with Dirk Bogarde as Liszt or Humoresque (1946) with John Garfield as an unlikely virtuoso…

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Winners Circle: (l. to r.) Gordon Bintner, Charlotte Burrage, Andrew Haji (Photo: Chris Hutcheson)COC General Director Alexander Neef congratulating winners of the Second Annual COC Ensemble Studio Competition (Photo: Chris Hutcheson)by Joseph SoSecond Annual COC Ensemble Studio Competition6:30 pm Thursday, November 29, 2012Richard Bradshaw Amphitheatre, Four Seasons CentreProgram: Kelsey Vicary, soprano – E strano…Sempre libera / Adieu, notre petite tableNathan Keoughan, bass – Se vuol ballare / Vecchia zimarraAviva Fortunata, soprano – Ernani involami / Or sai chi l’onoreCharlotte Burrage, mezzo – Vois sous l’archet fremissant / Composer’s AriaAndrew Haji, tenor – Quanto e bella / Un’aura amorosaClarence Frazer, baritone -…

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by Paul E. RobinsonOlga Guryakova, sopranoIan Bostridge, tenorDietrich Henschel, baritoneChildren’s Chorus of Greater DallasDallas Symphony ChorusDallas Symphony OrchestraJaap Van Zweden, conductorPaul Phillips, conductor (chamber orchestra)Myerson Symphony CentreDallas, TexasNovember 9, 2012By the late 1930s Germany, out to build its empire, had taken over Austria and Czechoslovakia. By September 1, 1939, when Germany attacked Poland, it had become clear to the rest of the world that Germany would not be satisfied until it had conquered the whole of Europe and the Soviet Union, just as Japan was on a track to crush China and the whole of Asia. There is not much…

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by Paul RobinsonLisa Milne, Leonore (Fidelio)Robert Dean Smith, FlorestanRobert Bork, PizarroArthur Woodley, RoccoSimona Saturova, MarzellineMarcel Reijans, JacquinoDetlef Roth, Don FernandoDallas Symphony Chorus (Joshua Habermann, director)Dallas Symphony Orchestra/Jaap van Zweden, conductorMeyerson Symphony CenterDallas, TexasMay 13, 2012On the face of it, opera “in concert” is a near impossibility. Opera is an art form that combines live theatre and music, with sets, costumes and the whole nine yards; to present it in concert form is to eliminate most of what makes it what it is; on the other hand, the music alone in many operas is so magnificent that the elimination of a full theatrical presentation can easily be justified, and in…

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Against the Grain Theatre presents Kurt Weill’s Seven Deadly Sins(photo: Against the Grain Theatre)I’ve noticed over the years that there’s usually a slight dip in the number of concerts during reading week. Even the Toronto Symphony is dark. Not sure exactly why, but perhaps presenters think Canadians go south or otherwise leave town? It seems to me this week is exactly the time for recreational activities, and what better way to enjoy life than to go to a concert? The rather unorthodox Against the Grain Theatre is presenting two evenings of Kurt Weill’s Seven Deadly Sins on March 16 and…

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This being Christmas Week, the number of concerts are way down. My top choice is the Orpheus Choir Christmas Concert, Christmas With Adrianne. Adrianne is soprano Adrianne Pieczonka who makes Toronto her home. On this occasion, you can hear her together with her partner in life and in art, mezzo soprano Laura Tucker, in a program of Christmas favourites. Robert Cooper conducts the Royal Conservatory of Music Orchestra. Also appearing is the Sidgwick Scholars of the Orpheus Choir, and Edward Moroney at the piano. The event takes place at Koerner Hall on Dec. 21 at 7:30 p.m. http://www.orpheustemp.com/2011/08/27/christmas-with-adrianne/The Toronto Symphony…

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Soprano Adrianne Pieczonka (Photo: Andreas Klingberg)The reigning Canadian prima donna, Adrianne Pieczonka is back home in Toronto, after having been away the last few months singing in Vienna, Tokyo, Hamburg and Berlin. She is giving a recital under the auspices of the Women’s Musical Club of Toronto on Thursday Dec. 1 at 1:30 p.m. at Walter Hall, Faculty of Music, University of Toronto. On the program are songs by Duparc and Canadian composer John Greer. Pieczonka is also singing Tatiana’s Letter Scene from Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin, as well as two Verdi arias – Ritorna vincitor from Aida and Ernani, involami…

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By Natasha GauthierPhoto: Decca / Marco BorggreveValery Gergiev and the Mariinsky Orchestra stopped at Ottawa’s National Arts Centre on Sunday, October 23, as part of their recent Canadian tour. Two Tchaikovsky symphonies were on offer, the First (“Winter Dreams”) and the much more celebrated Sixth (“Pathétique”).The performance offered a glimpse at a particular kind of symphonic tradition that is rarely seen in North American. The Mariinsky is freakishly homogenous: 100-plus musicians all from more or less the same cultural background, all with the same professional training, and in this instance playing its wheelhouse repertoire. The result is an orchestra that plays…

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by Paul E. RobinsonMozart: The Magic Flute Austin Lyric Opera (ALO)Director: James MarvelConductor: Richard BuckleyThe Long Center Austin, TexasSaturday November 5, 2011Congratulations are in order for the Austin Lyric Opera on the occasion of its 25th Anniversary. The organization also deserves enormous credit for dealing quickly and apparently effectively with a serious financial crisis that came to a boil last spring. Changes since then have included the resignation of General Director Kevin Patterson, the listing of ALO’s office building for sale, and major program cuts to the 2011-2012 season. Kevin Smith was appointed interim General Director and principal conductor Richard…

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