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The Classical Music Season Winds Down… And Dawn (Upshaw)

Written by Jay Nordlinger on . Posted in Miscellaneous, Posts

Saturday, April 21: It’s good to have an afternoon with Korngold, that neglected, underappreciated composer. City Opera is reviving its 1975 production of Die tote Stadt (The Dead City), possibly the composer’s finest work. Korngold was one of the great child prodigies in the history of music, compared frequently, and by some of the best [&hellip
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Classical Diary

Written by Jay Nordlinger on . Posted in Posts

Friday, March 23: The Prokofiev operas are being performed with ever more frequency, which is good news for Prokofiev, and good news for opera. At the Met tonight we have The Gambler, based on the Dostoevsky novella. The cast is (nearly) all Russian, and is led by the conductor Valery Gergiev, who is Ossetian. (These [&hellip
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Classical Music Diary: Cecilia Bartoli at Carnegie Hall, Verdi at the Met; Levine Conducts Mahler

Written by Jay Nordlinger on . Posted in Posts

Tuesday, Feb. 20: An evening with Cecilia Bartoli is a rollercoaster, and she usually leaves you thrown. The Italian mezzo-soprano is about the most maddening, most infuriating musician in the world–and she is also about the most popular, give or take a tenor or two. Rarely in music has so much vulgarity been so rapturously [&hellip
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Classical Diary: Lorin Maazel Plays Violin, Barely; Carnegie Hall’s “Choral Classics”; The Met’s Carmen

Written by Jay Nordlinger on . Posted in Posts

Tuesday, Jan. 16: Lorin Maazel is in Carnegie Hall, for what must be the thousandth time–but he’s playing the violin. Now 70 years old, the acclaimed conductor is, in fact, making his Carnegie recital debut. Many moons ago he was a child prodigy, as both a violinist and a conductor. But he hasn’t played the [&hellip
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Classical Diary

Written by Jay Nordlinger on . Posted in Posts

Friday, Dec. 29: Some people are licking their chops over Kurt Masur’s impending departure–his tenure as music director of the New York Philharmonic ends next season. Me, I’m beginning to mourn. The old German stands accused of having an insufficiently wide repertory. This is ridiculous–his repertory is plenty ample–but even if it weren’t, what’s wrong [&hellip
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Musical Diary

Written by Jay Nordlinger on . Posted in Posts

Sunday, Nov. 21 In recital at Alice Tully Hall this afternoon is Christine Schafer, the great hope of lieder-singing. She is a German soprano, young but wise, who has studied with, among others, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and the late, remarkable Arleen Auger (whom Schafer resembles in important respects). A couple of years ago, Schafer put out [&hellip
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Musical Diary

Written by Jay Nordlinger on . Posted in Posts

He opens with Brahms’ Variations on a Theme by Haydn, and something is wrong, desperately wrong. It is no good. Previn is usually superb in this music, but tonight he is indifferent, limp, uninspired. He and the orchestra are merely phoning it in. At one point, the orchestra gets horrifyingly tangled up–and in music so [&hellip
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The Classical Music Season Begins

Written by Jay Nordlinger on . Posted in Posts

Thursday, Sept. 30. The Metropolitan Opera opens with everyone’s favorite pair, Cavalleria Rusticana and I Pagliacci, a couple of verismo gushers centering on infidelity (the thematic mainstay of all opera). Pietro Mascagni did not produce much, but he scored big with Cav. Many who do not know the complete opera would recognize the "Intermezzo" for [&hellip
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