In Paris, Salle Pleyel’s Purchase By French Gov’t Suspended By Judge – In A Divorce Case

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In 2009, the state signed a contract to purchase the venerable concert hall from then-owner Hubert Martigny for €60.5 million. Now his estranged wife (and the hall’s former artistic director), Carla Maria Tarditi, is arguing that the price was artificially low and that the Pleyel is worth at least €110 million (to part of which she would be entitled in the divorce settlement). (in French)

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NPR Launches New Multiplatform Jazz Series

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“Featuring interviews with jazz greats, and concert video-casts from festivals and clubs nationwide, Jazz Night in America, a new initiative in jazz programming, began Wednesday. A joint endeavor of National Public Radio, Jazz at Lincoln Center and the Newark radio station WBGO (88.3 FM), it will bring jazz to audiences through its website, video and webcasts, as well as on radio.”

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Atlanta Symphony Lockout: How The Musicians Are Coping

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“The cellist, who has barely slept, searches his laptop for a secret recording of a former symphony executive. The clarinetist is gone, joining two other musicians now playing in the New York Philharmonic. And the percussionist, who practiced all summer for a star turn that may never come, spent a recent morning packing bottles at a local brewery. He got $45 and, he adds, a case of ale.”

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Here’s A Classical Music Organization That’s Staying Relevant (Despite Its Fusty Name)

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“In 2009-10 the Chamber Music Society [of Lincoln Center] gave 35 concerts along with 31 tour dates; the 2014-15 season boasts 54 concerts at home and 68 on tour. … Over the past five years their endowment has risen to $37 million from $31 million; contributor income is up 88%, and subscription sales have increased by 31%.” Stuart Isacoff looks at how they do it.

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What Will Daniele Gatti Bring To The Concertgebouw Orchestra?

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“The orchestra’s recently released 2013 annual report warns that unless the orchestra receives immediate government support, [it] is in danger of folding by 2016. Now, whether that’s a substantive fear or Met-like, Peter Gelb-style brinkmanship remains to be seen, but it’s clear that Gatti is coming into an orchestra that’s artistically at the top of its game, yet financially threatened as never before.”

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America’s 200-Year-Old Arts Organization Has A Birthday

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“I think the common denominator through these 200 years is the people of Boston — these businesspeople, musicians, the visionaries who really kept it afloat. If you think that it never stopped performing during the two great wars, the Civil War, the Depression . . . this organization has always kept going.”

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Protests Disrupt St. Louis Symphony Concert

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“The orchestra and chorus were preparing to perform Johannes Brahms’ Requiem just after intermission when two audience members in the middle aisle on the main floor began singing an old civil rights tune, “Which Side are You on?” They soon were joined, in harmony, by other protesters, who stood at seats in various locations on the main floor and in the balcony.”

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Atlanta Symphony Lockout: Woodruff Arts Center Chairman Hits Back

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Douglas Hertz on musicians’ criticisms: “It makes you wonder, you know, are we supporting a bunch of crazy people.” On music director Robert Spano: “Maybe Robert’s feeling a little bit guilty because he’s getting paid and the musicians aren’t. But he could be a big help in solving this.” On the Atlanta community: “The sad part of it is … there are not enough people that care. If the public cared maybe we wouldn’t be in this situation.”

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San Francisco Opera Chief David Gockley To Retire In 2016

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“With a mature organization like the San Francisco Opera, a CEO should stay 10 years,” he said. “The energy and creativity kind of gets squeezed out, and then the way opens up for new energy and new vision. This will be a positive thing for the company, and will put the onus on the company to get somebody great to succeed me.”

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Atlanta Symphony Bosses Pushed For New World Symphony-Style Internship Model

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The orchestra’s musicians say, and parent organization Woodruff Arts Center does not deny, that both the departed ASO president and Woodruff leaders argued “that the number of full-time tenured musicians of the ASO should be permanently reduced, and resulting vacancies could be filled with alumni from the ASO’s Talent Development Program (TDP), who would perform in an ‘internship’ capacity.”

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Music And Protest – What’s It Mean?

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From singing at recent New York street protests to protests over the Metropolitan Opera’s production of John Adams’ “The Death of Klinghoffer,” music and protest seem to be in the air…

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Rome Opera Fires Entire Orchestra And Chorus

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After years of enormous deficits, labor strife, alleged mismanagement, and threats of closure – culminating in Riccardo Muti’s surprise resignation from the company last month – the opera house’s board decided to replace the resident orchestra and chorus with “outsourced” artists. Said the general manager, “The only other alternative was shutting the theater down altogether.” (in English)

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Another Gifted Female Conductor Cracks The Glass Ceiling

Finnish conductor Susanna Malkki poses in Helsinki

Susanna Mälkki: “I was very aware that the tradition of the profession is extremely masculine. I knew that if I wanted to do this, I have to be particularly good at it. … Maybe one day we will have reached a point where we won’t have to discuss the gender issue at all.”

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L.A.’s Hot New Site-Specific Opera Company Launches Its Own Record Label

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“The new label is called The Industry Records and its first release will be last year’s acclaimed opera, Invisible Cities, which took place at Union Station. The show unfolded in real time throughout the historic building while audience members listened to the music on wireless headphones and singers and dancers appeared in, and interacted with, the crowd.”

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Avant-Garde Yodeling Gets Some Dirndls In A Twist

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“Christine Lauterburg, a musician from Bern, has layered yodeling over techno beats, and that simply isn’t done. She wears a miniskirt and heels on stage, rather than the Alpine peasant dresses worn by performers sanctioned by the Swiss Yodeling Association, the keeper of the flame. The outfit, called a dirndl, isn’t optional. Ms. Lauterburg isn’t alone in her heresy.”

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Is Our Music Experience Being Degraded By Streaming?

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The idea that music may go the way of newspapers, in which every outlet runs the same story, originating from the same source, over and over again ad nauseam, gives me a little chill. It’s bad enough when it’s a real news story being repeated with no new info. But it’s infuriating when it’s something as trivial as singer Robin Thicke fessing up that he lied about writing last summer’s creepy hit, “Blurred Lines.”

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Met Opera Faces Possible Downgrade Of Credit Rating

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“Moody’s, which rates the Met’s $100 million of debt A3, seventh-highest, said the review ‘reflects softening in earned and gift revenue’ … Moody’s may lower the rating by several steps if deficits continue to limit the Met’s liquidity.”

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