Classical Music

Reviews and previews of classical music performances and players. For a list of upcoming classical performances, visit our events section.

Amadeus at Symphony Hall

I happened to see that the San Diego Symphony was offering a screening of the movie Amadeus on a Saturday night (November 4) for $5, so I went. How could I not? The movie was ...

Autumn music

Russian choral music is also a must have for November

With the onset of some autumn-ish weather my ears are turning toward music of the same ilk. To whom can we go to find a fall-flowering? For times such as these the Norse gods of ...

Side dishes at San Diego Symphony

Four fantastic pieces on the program, but no Thanksgiving turkey

This Thanksgiving I’m going to have four of the most delicious, elegant, colorful, and refined side dishes you can ever imagine. However, if one of those side dishes is sweet potatoes there will be marshmallows. ...

The next Mozart? Just what classical music needs?

Big shoes to fill for 12-year-old Alma Deutscher

Suddenly Alma Deutscher is all over my social media. Is anyone else experiencing this? It seems as though network television still exists and 60 Minutes did a piece on the 12-year-old British composer. That’s right, ...

Impressed but unmoved

Marsalis, Rimsky Korsakov, Bizet at San Diego Symphony

Sometimes researchers go into the lab with an experiment and don’t get the results they wanted. This can be said of scientific research, and it can be said of artistic endeavors. Wynton Marsalis and Nicola ...

Enough Tchiakovsky!

Some symphonies we'd like to hear in San Diego

Having gone over some violin concertos, I feel it only fair to rundown some lesser known symphonies which don’t get much play in San Diego. Brahms is not on this list since, including this season, ...

Violin Concertos from around the world

Dvorak’s is everything that we love about the tuneful Czech

After all the hype I tried to generate for Nicola Benedetti playing Wynton Marsalis’ Violin Concerto, I thought it would be good to revisit some of the traditional violin concerto repertoire. I will group them ...

Nicola Benedetti at San Diego Symphony

I call them the millennial handful

In the past few years the San Diego Symphony has welcomed quite a few of the rising generation of violin soloists. We’ve seen Augustin Hadelich, Sarah Chang, Ray Chen, and Karen Gomyo. This weekend Nicola ...

Pirates of Penzance skewers Victorian Culture

Good Gilbert and Sullivan singing, for a change, at San Diego Opera

What of The Pirates of Penzance at San Diego Opera? The production is good and includes some excellent singing. My YouTube search for Pirates clips to include with this article brought home to me just ...

Pirates sail into San Diego Opera

It promises to be a treat... because Greer Grimsley

The last time Greer Grimsley was in a production at San Diego Opera I was accused, in so many words, of having an unhealthy man-crush on the steely voiced bass-baritone. I don’t deny it. Although ...

Despite Monty Python's best efforts, Billy Elliot exists

The comedy troupe torched the idea 30 years earlier

One would think that by the year 2000 the whole Northern England coal mining family with a son who “just wants to sing [or dance]” trope would have played itself out. Especially after repeatedly being ...

National football music

The heroic sound of NFL Films

The autumn wind is a pirate/ Blustering in from sea/ With a rollicking song, he sweeps along/ Swaggering boisterously His face is weather beaten/ He wears a hooded sash/ With a silver hat about his ...

Local youths sacrificed to the opera gods

The Met Auditions return October 7

The great sacrifice of die Jugend des Landes, the youth of the land, is coming up on Saturday, October 7, 10:00 a.m.. This sacrifice is also known as The Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, usually ...

Big can't go small

A new French opera album from Jonas Kaufmann

Jonas Kaufmann is one of my favorite tenors on the current world stage when it comes to the dramatic tenor repertoire. He has just released a new album of French opera arias. Some of it ...

Never go full romantic

Robert and Clara Schumann — classical music power couple

When we speak of classical music power couples there are a few which come to mind. There are Richard and Cosima Wagner, Frederic Chopin and George Sand, Gustav and Alma Mahler, Tchaikovsky and Nadezhda von ...

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