mon 08/08/2022

Classical Features

European Festivals 2010 Round-Up

Ismene Brown

istanbulIstanbul, Turkey, 3-30 June

Read more...

theartsdesk in Istanbul: Salzburg, Here We Come

Kate Connolly A traditional melting-pot: 'Istanbul would lose its identity if it became too local.'

At a sprawling car plant in the suburbs of north-eastern Istanbul mechanics are busy repairing camshafts and dynamos, applying blow torches to the undercarriages of a range of luxury cars and retouching paintwork. Visitors to the building are met by signs reading: “Sheer Driving Pleasure” and “Check Your Engine”. Upstairs, away from the mechanical buzz, fine-tuning of a completely different kind is going on as the Borusan Istanbul Philharmonic Orchestra is taken through its paces by its...

Read more...

The Seckerson Tapes: Petrenko's Shostakovich Eight

Edward Seckerson Vasily Petrenko and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic's latest CD release

The charismatic St Petersburg-born Vasily Petrenko has really been turning things around at the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra since he took over as principal conductor in 2005. With both standards and audiences on the up he has embarked upon his first major recording project – to record all 15 Shostakovich symphonies for the Naxos label. The two previous releases have received tremendous notices and in this exclusive podcast he talks about the project in general and the latest...

Read more...

theartsdesk in the Vatican: In an Audience with the Pope

Andrew Hammond

At the Vatican, recently, the Pope attended a concert in his honour in the Sala Clementina. This is the great double-height room which stands at the entrance to the private papal apartments; it is where Pope John Paul II’s body lay in state almost exactly five years ago. I was one of about 150 guests, at least a third of whom were cardinals, bishops and other senior clerical figures. As we arrived there was the most ornate and intricate gavotte of seat-taking, lasting a good 40 minutes.

Read more...

theartsdesk in Helsinki: Sunflowers By the Frozen Baltic

David Nice

Venezuela's joyful musical education programme known as El Sistema is the phenomenon of the age, the success story that many western countries now seek to replicate. And that's great. But Britain, for a start, might re-engage its own back-to-basics in music quicker by looking closer to home and seeing how Finland does it. In a small population, every child has free access to an instrument until secondary school.

Read more...

theartsdesk in Lucerne: Simón Bolívar Meets William Tell

David Nice

Glaciers melted early this year when a Venezuelan army of well over 100 generals arrived in central Switzerland. The Swiss spring coincided with their visit, a gentle thaw with bees buzzing confusedly around the primroses, snowdrops and winter jasmine; but the first appearance of the now stellar Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra of Venezuela at the Lucerne Easter Festival was more like the violent icebreak Stravinsky said he had in mind for The Rite of Spring.

Read more...

theartsdesk at Savannah Music Festival

Kate Connolly

Over four days I've gorged on some world-class music. If you take a pretty city in the full swing of spring, add a dose of Southern US hospitality, some exquisite venues, and a music promoter able to garner the cream of musical talent from across the genres, you have arguably found the perfect ingredients for a top-class musical extravaganza - and a wonderfully restorative experience for a music-lover ready for anything.

Read more...

Arvo Pärt Special 1: How Sacred Music Scooped an Interview

Simon Broughton

When I was asked 12 months ago by the BBC if I’d be interested in making a film on Henryk Górecki  (in Poland) and Arvo Pärt (in Estonia) for their Sacred Music series, I said yes, almost immediately. I’d been very impressed by the first series and liked the idea pairing of two composers writing religious music in the communist Eastern Bloc who have become almost cult figures in our secular age.

Read more...

Arvo Pärt Special 2: 'If you want to understand my music read this'

peter Quinn

My first encounter with Arvo Pärt’s music is indelibly etched on my consciousness. My piano teacher – the late Susan Bradshaw – placed a piece in front of me which, from a visual point of view alone, was immediately intriguing. Consisting of just two pages, what was most striking about the music was its utter simplicity: there was no time signature; no changes of tempo, key or dynamics; no textural variation.

Read more...

Philip Langridge, 1939-2010

David Nice

Britain's most communicative singing actor, lyric-dramatic tenor Philip Langridge has died at the age of 70. I offer a personal reminiscence, looking back on some of the greatest theatrical experiences of my life, and ask conductors Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Sir Mark Elder, Edward Gardner and Vladimir Jurowski as well as director Richard Jones what Langridge's example has meant to them.

Read more...

Pages

latest in today

Prom 27, Dinnerstein, National Youth Orchestra, Gourlay revi...

Danny Elfman – the punk rocker-turned-film composer behind Batman, Spider-Man, Edward Scissorhands and The Simpsons...

Burn, Edinburgh International Festival 2022 review - bold, r...

In retrospect, all the clues were there. A star actor embarking on a new performance genre; a fresh reappraisal of one of...

Utopia, Limited, National Gilbert & Sullivan Opera Compa...

Joseph Heller grew tired of being told that he’d never written anything as good as Catch 22. ‘Who has?’, he'd retort. In the same...

Edinburgh Fringe 2022 reviews: Boy / Intruder|Intruz

Boy, Summerhall

Nature or nurture? It...

Album: Boris - Heavy Rocks

Boris are an eclectic Japanese band, with over 20 albums to their name. Following their creative instincts and often recording live with no...

Edinburgh Fringe 2022 reviews: Les Dawson: Flying High / Bor...

 

Les Dawson: Flying High, Assembly George Square ★★★

Any...

Music Reissues Weekly: The Movers - Vol. 1 1970-1976

After a burst of gun-shot drumming, “Hot Coffee” instantly hits its groove. Simple but insistent guitar, a rubbery bass line and electric organ...

Nightclubbing: The Birth of Punk Rock in NYC review - cheap...

Bankruptcy, rubble, rape and murder: Manhattan in the Seventies could be grim, as multiple New York punk memoirs make clear. The trade-off was the...

South Pacific, Sadler's Wells review - strong singing i...

How old is Emile de Becque? Perhaps because my first Emile was the 1958 film version’s Rossano Brazzi, my vision of the lonely French...

Edinburgh Fringe 2022 reviews: Tiff Stevenson / Seann Walsh...
 
Tiff Stevenson, Pleasance Courtyard ★★★★
...