Classical

Classical Music
1:59 pm
Wed October 9, 2013

What Is Classical Music's Women Problem?

Australian conductor Simone Young, the outgoing artistic director of the Hamburg State Opera.
Klaus Lefebvre Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 9:36 am

Close your eyes, and you may think that this is 1913. In the past few days, the classical music community has been set aflame by recent comments from three prominent male conductors who are — steel yourself — actually saying that women are not capable of standing on the podium.

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Classical Music
4:11 pm
Tue October 8, 2013

Verdi's Gift: Wringing Catchy Music From Touchy Subjects

In his operas, Giuseppe Verdi had a knack for empowering marginalized people — like the title character of Aida, who is an enslaved Ethiopian princess (played in this 2011 French production by American soprano Indra Thomas).
Gerard Julien AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 8, 2013 6:24 pm

Two hundred years ago this week, Giuseppe Verdi was born in an Italian town midway between Bologna and Milan. On the occasion of his bicentennial, All Things Considered wanted to know what makes the great opera composer so enduring — why his work is still so frequently discussed and performed these two centuries later. The answer, says conductor and arranger John Mauceri, is that Verdi had a knack for making thorny topics accessible.

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KPAC Blog
4:43 pm
Mon October 7, 2013

Opera Piccola Moves Downtown To The Empire For New Season

Opera Piccola

Opera Piccola's season starts with a few surprises and amongst those is a big one: Moving into downtown’s Charline McCombs Empire theater.

"It only seats 800 people," said General Director Mark Richter, "so no matter where you sit in the Empire Theater, it’s a tremendous seat."

They’ve also begun positioning the company in a way unlike what many people think when they think of opera.

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KPAC Blog
3:39 pm
Mon October 7, 2013

San Antonio Symphony Adds More Moving Parts

San Antonio Symphony

The San Antonio Symphony debuted its new season last weekend and Musical Director and sometimes Conductor Sebastian Lang-Lessing predicts a lot of sizzle for their Friday and Saturday night performances at the Majestic.

"It’s going to be a very exciting performance for me," he said. "Schumann is something  that’s very personal for me. I’m very close to his music. I’ve recorded all of his symphonies and always feature him when I can."

Lang-Lessing is also looking forward to playing Rachmaninoff’s "Symphonic Dances."

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Performing Arts
11:24 am
Mon October 7, 2013

The Fat Lady Sings For New York City Opera

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Celeste Headlee. Michel Martin is away. They call it The People's Opera, but after this month, the New York City Opera will exist only in the history books. The renowned company is closing after 70 years. The New York City Opera failed to raise the $7 million it needed to cover its debts and will file for bankruptcy protection.

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KPAC Blog
10:33 am
Mon October 7, 2013

SOLI Chamber Ensemble Tackles Old And New Works

The SOLI Chamber Ensemble.
Courtesy of the artist

San Antonio’s SOLI Chamber Ensemble is about to begin its new season and violinist Ertan Torgul said their selections will include what he calls "classics of today" -- selections of such quality that time will eventually render them classics.

"We’re always very innovative," he said. "We do a lot of multimedia and we do a lot of mixed ensemble things, and brand new pieces of course. Every season features at least four or five brand new works."

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Music Interviews
11:03 am
Sun October 6, 2013

Returning To Music, Tested By Loss

Cellist and composer Erik Friedlander's new album is titled Claws & Wings.
Angelo Merendino Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun October 6, 2013 4:06 pm

Cellist and composer Erik Friedlander lost his wife of many years, dancer and choreographer Lynn Shapiro, to breast cancer in 2011. She'd been diagnosed a decade earlier, and Friedlander says music became a place of vital release for him as her condition worsened.

"During the difficult years, I did take refuge in working," he says. "It was a place where I could make the rules; where I could control what I could control."

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Classical Music
4:56 pm
Sat October 5, 2013

How Verdi Improved On Shakespeare

Johan Botha as the title character and Renée Fleming as Desdemona in the Metropolitan Opera's fall 2012 run of Verdi's Otello.
Ken Howard Metropolitan Opera

Originally published on Wed October 9, 2013 2:22 pm

This past week may have been a rough one for the classical world, but there is something to look forward to.

This coming week, we celebrate the 200th birthday of Giuseppe Verdi, composer of the best opera of all time. (That's right, Wagner fans. Start writing those letters.)

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Deceptive Cadence
2:18 pm
Sat October 5, 2013

It's Been A Really Bad Week For Classical Music

In Minneapolis, demonstrations in support of musicians have drawn regular support during the yearlong Minnesota Orchestra labor dispute.
Euan Kerr Minnesota Public Radio

Originally published on Sat October 5, 2013 5:36 pm

The world of classical music has had a very turbulent week. Carnegie Hall's labor dispute with its stagehands led to the cancellation of its opening-night gala.

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Music Reviews
12:58 pm
Fri October 4, 2013

This Opera Will Eat Your Heart Out

Barbara Hannigan and Bejun Mehta in the Festival at Aix production of Written on Skin.
Pascal Victor ArtComArt

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 10:05 am

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