“What isn’t so radical any more is the notion of a rock or pop artist composing so-called serious music. Beethoven no longer rolls over in his grave. Rather, he’s propped up on one elbow listening to Radiohead.”
The 45-year-old Finn, until last year music director of Ensemble InterContemporain in Paris and recently appointed principal guest conductor of Lisbon’s Gulbenkia Orchestra and active throughout Europe and North America as a guest conductor, takes over from John Storgårds in Helsinki at the start of 2016.
Alexander Periera “was reflective about his struggles with the budget in Salzburg, where he arrived after more than 20 years at the Zurich Opera House to discover that the locked subsidies had created a large financial hole. ‘I was so charmed by being asked back into my home country that I didn’t do due diligence,’ he said. ‘And that was a big mistake.’”
In a 1,274-word online column titled “Classical Music Criticism in Dallas: It’s Time for a Makeover”, D Magazine’s Catherine Womack goes after The Dallas Morning News‘s Scott Cantrell for a 55-word blog post – a quick little kvetch about the word maestro – that Womack calls “insulting and condescending towards both enthusiastic audience members and The Dallas Opera’s newly appointed principal guest conductor, Nicole Paiement, who happens to be a woman.”
“The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra is projecting a deficit of roughly $1.4 million at the end of its 2014 fiscal year, which concludes Sunday. … If the PSO balances its roughly $30 million budget by the end of next fiscal year, it will be eligible for $5 million from the Heinz Endowments; if it does so for three consecutive years, it will receive $12 million from the Simmons Family Foundation.”
“From over 1,000 applications, 40 singers from 17 nations, including the United States, Russia and China, made it through to the main competition, which began on August 25. Following two days of preliminary rounds, 20 singers enter the semi-finals. Ten singers will reach the final round on August 30, which is presented as a Gala Finals Concert with an orchestra conducted by Domingo.”
“To succeed in today’s music business the aspiring musician needs to give almost as much time and thought to business-related matters as they give to practising their art. They need to find their unique space in the market place. They need to find out what they have to offer that is different to everybody else.”
The conductor announced on his Facebook page that, “with a heavy heart”, he has decided to step down from the orchestra’s music directorship after the 2015-16 season. He gave no reason other than his desire to devote time to his new post at Tokyo’s NHK Symphony (beginning in fall 2015) as well as his ongoing work with the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen. (in French)
“After a fractious 2012 labor dispute that saw musicians locked out of symphony facilities without pay, the ASO Players’ Association has less than two weeks to reach consensus with management on the 2014 contract. Amid the ongoing uncertainty — negotiations have been going on for more than eight months now — several musicians have retired, and some have taken positions with other orchestras.”
As most Italian opera houses seem to careen from disaster to disaster, Turin’s Teatro Regio has seemed a rare bright spot, with quality and reputation both soaring even as state funding shrivels – and Noseda’s work as music director gets most of the credit. But now his long-simmering tensions with the house’s boss have boiled over.
Several players in the Vallejo (Cal.) Symphony have publicly chastised the orchestra’s board for its unanimous vote not to renew the contract of David Ramadanoff, who has served as music director for 33 years. The concertmaster says that “maybe more than half” of the musicians will quit after Ramadanoff’s final concert.