wed 26/02/2020

Classical Buzz

Birthdays on the Tube: 3-9 January

Peter Culshaw

An ongoing series celebrating musicians' birthdays.

7 January 1907:  This week, by cosmic or other coincidence, has the birthdays of four composers who wrote some of the most interesting 20th-century music for the piano. Francis Poulenc here plays his Piano Concerto for Two Pianos with Jacques Fevrier.

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theartsdesk an essential site of 2009: BBC Radio 5 Live

theartsdesk

radio 5theartsdesk received a New Year's gift last night when we were given a significant accolade from BBC Radio 5 Live. In Web 2009 with Helen and Olly, the station's podcasters and self-styled "internet obsessives" Helen Zaltzman and Olly Mann recognised theartsdesk as one of the five "essential sites of 20...

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Boxing Day Bloat: theartsdesk recommends

theartsdesk

The morning after the day before has dawned. If you're not inclined to join the shopping queues, theartsdesk is happy to suggest alternatives. Our writers recommend all sorts of cultural things you could get up to in the next week.

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A Merry Little Christmas Eve: theartsdesk recommends

theartsdesk

As we all have only one shopping day left, theartsdesk hopes to make Christmas Eve a little easier by offering a few enlightened recommendations. From our writers on new and classical music, opera and ballet, film and comedy, here is a list of CDs and DVDs that we hope will enhance your 11th-hour shopping experience. Happy Christmas from all at theartsdesk.

 

DVDs


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Birthdays on the Tube, 13-19 December

Peter Culshaw

A continuing series celebrating musicians' birthdays.

16 December 1899: Noel Coward, sharing a birthday with Beethoven, an early English rapper of the silk polka dot dressing gown and cigarette holder school.

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The Cultural Highlights of the Decade, BBC Online

Jasper Rees

This week the BBC News online magazine is running a Portrait of the Decade. Each day has brought a consideration of the words, the events, the people, the objects and, today, the cultural highlights of the decade. I was invited to consider those highlights.

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Birthdays on the Tube, 29 November-5 December

Peter Culshaw

An ongoing series celebrating musicians' birthdays.

2 December 1982: Britney Spears is 27. There is some resistance to Britney hereabouts, so I thought I'd post a version of "Toxic" sung acoustically by Galia Arad to demonstrate that she does have some terrific songs. If Galia - who with her cousin Lail, should become much better known in...

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Birthdays on the Tube, 15-21 November

Peter Culshaw

A continuing series celebrating musicians' birthdays.

22 November 1965: Bjørk released her first self-titled album at the age of 11, at 14 she was in a punk band called Spit and Snot, and has since gone on to be one of the most successful and original musicians on the planet. Many of her classic videos have had their sound removed on YouTube, but "All is Full of Love" directed by Chris Cunningham  is up there still, and features the best lesbian robot love scene ever...

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2009 Classic FM Gramophone Awards, Dorchester Hotel

Adam Sweeting

The term "Awards Ceremony" can strike terror into the stoutest of hearts, but hats off to the masterminds of the 2009 Classic FM Gramophone awards. Their shindig at the Dorchester was enjoyable, educational, and even intermittently hilarious (and for the right reasons).

Mathieu Herzog, viola player with France's Quatuor Ebène who carried off the lusted-after Recording Of The Year award for their disc of Debussy, Ravel and Fauré, even ran Antoine "Eurotrash" de Caunes...

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4.30 am. Encounter with Gergiev

Peter Culshaw

Outside it’s snowing in the pale and spectral city of St Petersburg. Inside it’s 4.30 am and we’ve been drinking for several hours in a restaurant next to the Mariinsky Theatre when Valery Gergiev, for many the world’s greatest conductor and with a reputation as a wild man, suggests now would be the best time for an interview with him.

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