Classical Music

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

What happened to opera

Super-titles have hastened the demise of the opera singer .

Stand by folks, I’ve identified the opera problem. What opera problem? The one where audiences are declining and the audiences which do attend often can’t say if what they heard from the singers was good ...

Long lines swarm San Diego Symphony

Were they there for Mahler or Rafael Payare?

There were lines, long lines. Lines which stretched the length of the lobby and then extended around the corner. They were beautiful because everyone was in line for the opening concert of the 2019-2020 Jacobs ...

The scandal of cell phones at classical music concerts

Anne-Sophie Mutter.and the Cincinnati Symphony

No one in the history of recorded classical music has benefited more from media than violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter. At age 13 was selected by Herbert von Karajan. At age 15 she was recorded for the ...

Hershey Felder does Chopin the right way

Questions from the audience during breaks

I’ve made no secret of the fact that I am a Hershey Felder fan. My fandom is based on three of his productions, the most recent of which I saw on Saturday night, September 14 ...

Berlin Philharmonic turns away from new music

New director, Kirill Petrenko, getting flak

The new music director of the Berlin Philharmonic, Kirill Petrenko, is receiving some flak for his opening concerts with the orchestra. He is too conservative with his programming. In the words of Alex Ross, critic ...

San Diego Opera's Aida – more music, less moving

Sometimes costumes and the set obscure the sound

The San Diego Opera opens their 2019-2020 Season with Verdi’s Aida. I will be in the chorus, for the fourth time. However, this is the first time I will be in a production which is ...

We don't need a dabbler at the Met

None of these conductors has opera in his blood

I recently watched a YouTube video from a channel entitled *This is Opera*. The video demonstrated just how much Yannick Nézet-Séguin understands the human voice. If you watch the masterclasses which Nézet-Séguin held at Juilliard, ...

nkoda – egalitarian sheet music

Reader writer tested Aida for singing in this fall's opera

While I generally embrace digital technology, I don’t consider myself to be an app guy. I don’t follow the top app charts in the App Store or play any games on my phone or iPad. ...

Conrad Prebys – a modern-day Razumovsky

What if the Miró Quartet flopped?

I’m sure you remember the old “interrupting cow” knock-knock joke. Interrupting cow wh—? MOOOO! That joke was on my mind during Miró Quartet’s all Beethoven concert on Saturday, August 11, at the La Jolla Music ...

Miró Quartet lets its hair down

Candid talk before La Jolla concerts

According to their website, “The Miró [String] Quartet took its name and its inspiration from the Spanish artist Joan Miró, whose Surrealist works — with subject matter drawn from the realm of memory, dreams, and ...

Core Beethoven at La Jolla Music Society Summerfest

Don't go to Conrad Prebys at UCSD

Beethoven wrote 16 string quartets which were graced with opus numbers. At this year’s La Jolla Music Society Summerfest, you can hear nine of them. As I mentioned in previous writings, expect a lot of ...

Why San Diego Opera is not like the national theater of Chile

Part-time employees our salvation

Slipped Disc website is reporting massive employee cuts by the Teatre Municipal de Santiago. The company is the national theater of Chile and is located in the capital of Santiago. The theater was inaugurated in ...

The little-known Verdi, Wagner, Haydn music

When they composed out of genre

Sometimes a composer becomes so well known for a particular genre of music that other pieces go unrecognized. The following are three examples of composers who are famous for one thing but who composed other ...

San Diego, get ready for Beethoven

San Diego Symphony will perform Beethoven’s Symphonies No. 3, 4, 5, 6, and 9

Ludwig van Beethoven was baptized on December 17, 1770, in the Electorate of Cologne, in present-day Germany. At the time, Bonn was the seat of the Electorate since Cologne had become a Free Imperial City ...

Stormy end to Mainly Mozart

Waiting since Amadeus for this

The sun was setting in Beethoven’s Symphony No.6 out beyond the reaches of the Vienna Woods, which extend to the north and southwest of the “city of music”. The final glow of the music disappeared ...

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