Classical Music

Ten extinct conductors you should know

A dusting off of some masters who are now gone

There are certain names one should know when it comes to conductors. Not just names but their contributions. Here are 10 dead conductors whom everyone should know of. I have limited to conductors of whom ...

Rach docs on a Sunday night

I needed to wash off the pop culture

I spent Sunday night “doc-ing out” on YouTube. Surrounded by the puddles of a mediocre culture obsessed with any number of transient concerns, I found it necessary to bathe in something more permanent — admittedly ...

Hershey Felder's latest in a string of successful one-man shows

Tchaikovsky at San Diego Repertory Theatre

The music of Tchaikovsky has long been a favorite of everybody except the most obtuse of emotional constitution. He, along with Puccini, is the master emoter. Whereas Puccini was almost exclusively a composer of opera, ...

Choral Consortium hosts a screening of Robert Shaw documentary

"Hearing Shaw explain the reasoning behind his approach made so many things fall into place."

I found myself listening to the Robert Shaw Chorale over the holidays. It was a bit of a nostalgic journey as this was the soundtrack for Christmas at my grandparents' house. I also remembered that ...

San Diego Symphony starts its month of the American composer

...kicking off with a couple of free concerts January 5 and 7

What does it mean to be an American composer? This is the question that the San Diego Symphony will be answering all month. January is dedicated to the American composer and the symphony is kicking ...

Three classical concerts from 2016

You can't do epic shit with basic people

The three performances that mattered most in 2016: Great Scott at San Diego Opera; Madama Butterfly at San Diego Opera; Holst The Planets at San Diego Symphony. Jake Heggie has been prolific by modern standards ...

Waltz in the New Year

The annual Vienna Philharmonic concert is on the way

The Viennese Waltz has become the official anthem of New Year’s, at least in classical circles. On each New Year’s day the Vienna Philharmonic gives a concert of music predominantly by the Strauss dynasty. Since ...

One hundred years of the Ukrainian Bell Carol

...turns out it's not a Christmas song

One hundred years ago a Ukrainian composer named Mykola Leontovich found an ancient tune of four notes and set them to text about the coming of spring. The story of the song was about a ...

Christmas Festival Death Match of White People

The Mormons and Lutherans square off for Christmas supremacy

I’m afraid that when it comes to Christmas, no one can do it quite like the Mormons and their Tabernacle Choir. On second thought, St. Olaf offers a big-time Christmas experience as well. If there ...

Beethoven's Ninth at the San Diego Symphony

The best performance of the three most recent

Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9. This piece of music is considered to be the ultimate expression of humanity's struggle for freedom. The main tune, which we all know, the Ode to Joy, was purposefully written as ...

Robert Oppenheimer is Dr. Atomic

A symphonic representation of an opera about a complicated man

The San Diego Symphony gave a performance of John Adams’s Dr. Atomic Symphony over the weekend of December 3 and 4. It was a great performance but it left me realizing just how rich is ...

Martha Argerich honored at Kennedy Center

Argentinian pianist makes a rare public appearance

I have an golden excuse to mention pianist Martha Argerich. On December 5 she was honored with a Kennedy Center Lifetime Achievement Award. The Kennedy Center Honors will air on CBS December 27, at 9 ...

San Diego Symphony and the astral plane

A singularity-esque performance of Gustav Holst's The Planets

Sometimes, in a live performance, a conductor will downplay “the big tune” in a symphony performance. Sometimes, in a live performance, a conductor will elevate and revel in “the big theme.” We gratefully received the ...

Musical fountain of eggnog from the San Diego Symphony

Clearly December is here

The weekend of musical eggnog begins with a screening of Home Alone at Symphony Hall. The San Diego Symphony will provide a live soundtrack to this modern holiday classic. What will that rapscallion Kevin do ...

Hold the egg nog and pass The Planets

Before choking on holiday concerts we get to explore the astrological solar system

Tis the season for choir concerts. Lessons and carols are being dusted off as the first Sunday of Advent is here. The ubiquitous Messiah is making its rounds and the symphony is, more than likely, ...

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