Browsing: La Scena Online

On donations to the arts in Europe and America TIS the season to be giving. Something close to £12 million poured in last weekend to the BBC’s Children in Need appeal. Another record total is confidently expected for the annual Telegraph charity fund-raiser next Sunday. Manning the phones for The Telegraph, I never fail to be moved and humbled at the generosity of thousands of people who want to give others the chance of a better life. Never in human history has so much been freely given by so many in good causes – and I have the figures to…

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Le Monde Awards La Scena Musicale Online 4 Stars ———————————————————————— Press Release Le Monde Awards La Scena Musicale Online 4 Stars Montreal / June 12, 2000 – In its special “Best of the Net” issue in May, Le Monde awarded 4 stars out of 4 to La Scena Musicale Online. Only two of the seven classical music websites listed received 4 stars. Every day, news and articles on classical music are published world-wide on the internet. Finding that particular interview of Renee Fleming is not always easy. A new feature at La Scena Musicale Online (scena.org), called ClassicalMusicNews.org links classical…

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How Smith Has Crippled Culture by Norman Lebrecht / June 7, 2000 IN THE bleary fourth year of New Labour, few members of the Cabinet have enhanced their career prospects. Beyond the big guns of Blair and Brown, the further you look down the table the bigger the pile of fumbles and foul-ups – until you reach the lowliest seat of all, where the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport wears a broad smile and an almost unsoiled record. Whispers in the political wind suggest that Chris Smith is due for a move in this summer’s reshuffle. He…

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———————————————————————— Love and Nature take Center Stage in New Oratorio by Joseph So / June 3, 2000 When Nicholas Goldschmidt, the peripatetic champion of classical music commissioned Derek Holman for a new work as part of the Music Canada 2000 festivities, he specified that it be in some way connected with the new Millennium and Canadian in flavour. Composer Derek Holman gladly complied and on June 1st, we heard the result – a fifty minute oratorio scored for a mammoth orchestra, two choirs, and three soloists. The text of Invisible Reality is drawn from eight poems by P.K. Page, and…

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Mariss Jansons – High Drama on the Podium by Norman Lebrecht / May 31, 2000 FORTY minutes before a concert, Mariss Jansons mounts the stage and checks the musicians’ seating. The second clarinet’s chair is moved half an inch to the right, the tuba’s turned 15 degrees towards centre. Like a brain surgeon, Jansons needs to be assured that all his instruments are correctly aligned before he can start to operate. More than any conductor I have known, Jansons is preoccupied with his precision tools. Among friends, he compares the vagaries of orchestras. If he has a spare hour on…

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Three Canadians Amongst Finalists at the 2000 Queen Elisabeth Competition by Wah Keung Chan / May 22, 2000 Three Canadians are amongst the twelve finalists of the The 2000 Queen Elisabeth International Music Competition in Voice. The three Canadians are Karen Wierzba (Toronto), Marie-Nicole Lemieux (Montreal) and Robert Pomakov (Toronto). A fourth finalist also has a Canadian connection: Korean counter-tenor David Dong Qyu Lee received training at the Vancouver Academy of Canada. Here is the complete list of contestants according to their order of appearance in the finals: Karen Wierzba Canada 25 soprano Marina Poplavskaya Russia 22 soprano Marius Brenciu…

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Glorious Goerne Recital brings end to Season – and Hall by Joseph So / May 21, 2000   For those mourning the demise of the Weston Recital Hall as a concert venue, the recital by German baritone Matthias Goerne underscores more clearly than ever the reason for its failure, and the importance to keep it alive. Here we have a liederabend by the greatest exponent of the genre today, the hall was far from full, even with a discreet “papering” of the house. Unfortunately, this was all too typical of what has happened at this venue ever since it opened…

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Bergonzi’s Otello a Bittersweet Affair by Joseph So / May 17, 2000   When the great Carlo Bergonzi announced his American Farewell Recital at Carnegie Hall on April 17th 1994, I couldn’t resist the occasion of hearing him for one last time. It was a supremely nostalgic evening, with almost as much applause as singing, and love flowed freely across the footlights from both directions. It was an artistic and box office triumph. Imagine my surprise when I read in the papers barely a year later that Signor Bergonzi would be in New York for an evening of Neapolitan Songs.…

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Antony Beaumont, Zemlinsky Faber & Faber, £30. 524pp Book Review by Norman Lebrecht / May 10, 2000 Probably the cruellest tribute ever offered by one composer to another was Arnold Schoenberg’s fiftieth-birthday greeting to his brother-in-law. ‘Zemlinsky,’ said Schoenberg, ‘can wait.’ What he meant, acolytes argued, was that a composer of Alexander von Zemlinsky’s quality could sleep soundly abed, confident that posterity would recognise his merit. However, even in the city of Sigmund Freud’s dreams where subtext overwhelmed context, the plain meaning of Schoenberg’s words was unmistakable. Zemlinsky, he reckoned, was not one of those artists who alter the destiny…

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SSUE 1818 Wednesday 17 May 2000 Friends in need?   BOC Covent Garden Festival – official site   Norman Lebrecht on the callous misnomer “arts community” THERE are one or two lessons about money that I have picked up during 20 years of unremitting arts crisis. The first is never to believe a public-funded company that says it is going broke. When the cash runs out, there is seldom enough time to sound the alarm. A funded institution that cries “bust!” is doing no more than playing the joker in a long-running game of brinkmanship. Another hard-learned tip is not…

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