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Stories by Garrett Harris

Dave Mustaine and the San Diego Symphony

Mustaine and the orchestra play an all classical concert together.

Saturday night at the Jacobs Music Center was about the most fun I’ve had at a symphony concert. The buzz before the April 12 concert was alien to those hallowed walls — at least in ...

Project Trio at the Symphony

Beatbox and wave your hands in the air

The Project Trio was in town last weekend. I had recommended them sight-unseen earlier in the week. Having now seen them at the Jacobs Music Center on Sunday, I can say they are the most ...

Opera Wednesday in La Jolla

When was the last time you were able to critique a critic?

Opera Wednesdays are starting this Wednesday at the La Jolla Community Center. As I’ve mentioned before, opera is not dead. The lineup on Wednesday is strong and features a slew of accomplished singers. All of ...

Huge classical weekend ahead

Wanna support music with your attendance? Get some this weekend.

It’s time to walk the talk folks. The musical community in San Diego is talking about saving the opera and the death of classical music. The simple solution is to get out there and go ...

An operatic death

The sky is falling and opera is dying.

Opera is dying, opera is dying, opera is dying! Ticket sales are down across the country from San Francisco to The Met. In a recent interview I had with Ferruccio Furlanetto, he mentioned that things ...

San Diego Opera calls it quits

Out with the old

Last night at the conclusion of San Diego Opera’s orchestral rehearsal for Verdi’s Requiem, Gerry Whitney was honored. Gerry has been with San Diego Opera for 43 years and has been in a ridiculous number ...

An interview with Stephanie Blythe, mezzo-soprano (3 of 3)

The conclusion of the Reader interview with Stephanie Blythe

Part one began our interview, it continued with part two, and concludes here. SB: Last night, for the first time in my life, I watched How Green Was My Valley. Oh my God, it’s a ...

An interview with Stephanie Blythe, mezzo-soprano (2 of 3)

"I think art is born of two things: love and risk, that’s all it is."

Un Ballo in Maschera has opened at San Diego Opera and the reviews are lauding its merits. And indeed they should. Ballo can be great or it can be an ordeal. This Ballo is top-to-bottom ...

An interview with Stephanie Blythe, mezzo-soprano (1 of 3)

A conversation about weather, travel and art

We started our conversation with some small talk about the weather and Girl Scout cookies. Stephanie Blythe: I spent a week in Rancho Mirage before we came here. Oh my god, I couldn't believe it. ...

Stephanie Blythe is a romantic

Superstar mezzo-soprano coming to San Diego

Stephanie Blythe is in San Diego to sing. It’s what she does, and she does it as well — if not better — than anyone you’ll ever hear. I was able to sit down and ...

The Ring, without words

The Ring Without Words. That’s all I need to write. The Ring Without Words. I’ll add the time and dates as well. Friday, February 28th and Saturday, March 1st, at 8:00 pm and Sunday, March ...

Everyone loves the soprano

Tatiana Lisnic is winning the ears and hearts of San Diego

Something amazing is happening at San Diego Opera right now. In an opinionated industry, as we discussed with Frank Porretta, there is a consensus regarding soprano Tatiana Lisnic. Every, single person I know who has ...

Kevin Burdette: Feel the love

The conclusion of our interview with opera singer Kevin Burdette

...Continuing with our interview of opera singer Kevin Burdette. San Diego Reader: Are you married? Kevin Burdette: I am. I met my wife while working at a law firm in New York — well, wait. ...

Kevin Burdette: Shakespeare is a "gateway drug into opera"

An interview with a comedic opera singer: part 1 of 2

Watching Kevin Burdette perform a comedic opera is kind of like watching Jim Carey perform opera — only Kevin sings better. Kevin is a lanky bass from Knoxville who nearly stole the show last season ...

Cabrillo Chamber Orchestra

The Cabrillo Chamber Orchestra is presenting the "An American Experience" concert next weekend. This showcase of American composers will begin at 8 pm on February the 15th at Crill Hall on the Point Loma Nazarene ...

San Diego Symphony back from opera

Pipa master Wu Man to solo with orchestra

With Pagliacci in the books at San Diego Opera, the San Diego Symphony Orchestra returns to the Jacobs Music Center for a concert off the beaten path this coming weekend. The first rarity of the ...

Joshua Bell is back in San Diego

A quick interview with violin mega-star Joshua Bell about his upcoming concert.

Joshua Bell is a busy, busy, man but he will be coming to San Diego to give a solo recital on Friday February 7th. We all know and love him in San Diego for his ...

Frank Porretta: A tenor talks (2 of 2)

Part two of an interview with San Diego star Frank Porretta.

San Diego Opera's production of Pagliacci opens on Saturday, January 26th. The show starts at 7:00 pm at The Civic Theater. There are only four performances: January 26th, 28th, 31st and February 2nd. Read part ...

Frank Porretta: A tenor talks (1 of 2)

The star of the upcoming production of Pagliacci at San Diego Opera talks about the biz.

The last time Frank Porretta sang with San Diego Opera was the last time he sang the role of Duca in Verdi's Rigoletto. His voice has matured into roles such as Andrea Chenier, Calaf, and ...

Extreme Midget Opera

San Diego Opera needs a little person on stage.

San Diego Opera has a casting problem. They need an actor to be featured in the upcoming production of The Elixir of Love. Why the problem? I mean, the role is paid, it’s a non-singing ...

Revisiting The Merry Widow

A classic San Diego Opera production.

As the opera season is zooming up on us I thought it might be fun to take a look at an older San Diego Opera Production that showed up on YouTube a few months ago. ...

Brahms versus Schutz

The World Cup of Composers.

We’re going to go Bach versus Bach here in the second match of Germany’s World Cup of Composers: Johann Sebastian Bach (papa Bach) versus his son, Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach. CPE Bach was a classical ...

Hindemith versus Beethoven

Since the last two concert weekends at San Diego Symphony have been all German affairs, this is the perfect time to start the German love-fest section of the World Cup. The first contest is between ...

San Diego Holiday Half Marathon sells out

A few additional spots up for grabs.

The first edition of the San Diego Holiday Half Marathon is sold out. However, there will be additional spots up for grabs at Road Runner Sports this Saturday, December 28. The event will take place ...

The Nutcracker's incorrect notes

California Ballet's Nutcracker at the Civic Theater

I went to The Nutcracker on Friday night at the Civic Theater. The production was by California Ballet and I have to admit that I was impressed. Of course, I'm not an expert when it ...

Bronfman, Beethoven, and Schumann

I'm getting a little weary of praising the San Diego Symphony to the heavens, but they're not giving much of a choice. Last week's "most beautiful sound ever" has now been replaced by the brass ...

Beethoven 9th: San Diego Symphony (2 of 2)

As beautiful as the Brahms performance was, it was not the primary draw to last weekend’s concerts. The big piece of music was Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9. We weren’t disappointed. The performance was magnificent. The ...

Beautiful Brahms at San Diego Symphony (1 of 2)

Saturday night was the first time I've been able to catch the San Diego Symphony after their return from touring China. The first sound they made was Brahms' Variations on a Theme by Haydn and ...

Beethoven 9th

Beethoven's Ode to Joy is on this weekend

Speaking of Germans, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 is coming up this weekend at Symphony Hall. The orchestra, conductor Ken-David Masur, and the San Diego Master Chorale are all familiar entities, but what about the soloists? ...

King Kong versus Godzilla

The Germans are here and they're angry.

The Germans are here and ready to rumble in the World Cup of Composers. This group has several contenders who could take it all. This bracket is brimming with rivalries and they’re not friendly. We’re ...

The Americans are finished

I’m going to admit that the American bracket, here in The World Cup of Composers, is boring me to tears so let’s just get it over and done with so we can get on to ...

Back in San Diego

The San Diego Symphony Orchestra returns for their first post-tour concert.

The San Diego Symphony is back from China and ready to continue the Jacobs Masterworks season this weekend. They program the are performing is strong. For starters, the strings will be featured in Sir Edward ...

The Most Not-Cussing Fella

A surprising edit in Point Loma

I caught a performance of The Most Happy Fella at Point Loma Nazarene University on Saturday night the 16th of November. It was good. What stood out to me the most in this production was ...

St. Jude's Give Thanks

How much would you pay to run a family friendly 5K in order to support St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital? On Saturday, November 23rd there will be a 5k at De Anza Cove for St. ...

Insurance or documentaries?

Two lesser known Americans in the World Cup of Composers

Charles Ives was a New England insurance actuary and executive. He worked for a few companies before founding Ives & Co., which later became Ives and Myrick. Ives structured life insurance policies in such a ...

The Most Happy Fella

Two more performances by Point Loma Opera Theater

The Most Happy Fella by Frank Loesser may not officially be an opera but it was staged in 2006 by the now-decaying corpse that was once New York City Opera. The still-young and alive Point ...

Enlightenment Cage

John Cage versus George Gershwin

Let’s do a match in the World Cup of Composers. The next match for the Americans is George Gershwin versus John Cage. I think we all know George Gershwin but John Cage is another story. ...

Communication: San Diego Symphony (2 of 2)

No need to interpret when you communicated clearly.

While I was fuming about Lang Lang during the intermission, I saw my old friend Gerry two rows over. We chatted a bit about the trumpets sounding better this year. He mentioned how tight and ...

Lang Lang: San Diego Symphony (1 of 2)

I waited with anticipation for Saturday night’s concert at the Jacobs Music Center. It was sold out. There is nothing I love more in this world than a sold out concert at the symphony. The ...

Samuel Barber versus John Williams

Movie music is better than I thought.

Number-two seed Samuel Barber versus John Williams. John Williams is probably the best known American composer in the world. Probably? How about definitely? Is there a better known riff than the Jaws theme? Who hasn’t ...

American seeding

The first seeding of the Cup.

I haven’t done a formal seeding for composers so far in the World Cup of Composers but I think it will help with the American bracket. Here they are 1-16 with their matchups. Aaron Copland ...

Americans in the Cup

Time for the U.S. to enter the field.

With all the American composers at the San Diego Symphony this month, it is obviously time to start the American leg of the World Cup of Composers. Here’s the challenge: find 16 American composers. We’ve ...

A smoldering pile: San Diego Symphony (2 of 2)

The music from the Opus Gala

The theme of the Opus Gala at San Diego Symphony was "The Roaring '20s." The concert started with John Harbison. Harbison is a fairly well known American composer. He's one of those names that crops ...

Opus Gala: San Diego Symphony (1 of 2)

At of 8:00 pm on Friday, the 11th of October, the Joan and Irwin Jacobs Music Center was opened at Symphony Hall. At the Opus Gala on Saturday night, the Jacobs’ were brought onstage to ...

Prokofiev 5: San Diego Symphony (2 of 2)

Swagger.

There was a good reason for Augustin Hadelich to join the audience for Prokoviev's 5th Symphony. I was at the Saturday night concert which meant Augustin had already heard the Prokofiev on Friday. He knew ...

He inspires romance: San Diego Symphony (1 of 2)

Augustin Hadelich and San Diego Symphony.

When I saw the size of the orchestra on the stage at Symphony Hall for David Bruce’s Night Parade, I knew we were in for a rumpus. I love, love, loved, this piece of music ...

Bruce, Barber, Prokofiev

The San Diego Symphony starts masterwork season

It’s finally here, the opening of the San Diego Symphony Orchestra Masterworks Season. This weekend, October 4th, 5th, and 6th at Symphony Hall, the orchestra will be performing with renowned violinist Augustin Hadelich. The Concert ...

Shamu and you

Walk a mile or four with Shamu?

Everyone's best buddy Shamu, the killer whale, is raising money for The Rady Children's Hospital. The name of the the event is the Shamu and You Walk. I’m not sure how much walking Shamu is ...

English Conclusion

Elgar and Finzi conclude the English bracket

And here we are at the conclusion of the first round for England. The final two players are Finzi and Elgar. Believe it or not, I used to know a baritone who was so enamoured ...

A Child of Our Time versus the ocean.

Tippett and Vaughan Williams, the penultimate match of England round one.

The final two matches for the English first round are Tippett versus Vaughan Williams and Elgar versus Finizi. Michael Tippett was a contemporary of Benjamin Britten and William Walton. Tippett, as with Britten, was an ...