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At last, NY Times gets a whiff of competition on the concert scene

Over the past five years, as the New York Times has spiralled into critical confusion, more and more good music has gone uncovered in the city. Print is no longer the first medium for music coverage and the Times’s muddle is shared by most other newspapers. Minority arts and sports have fallen off the agenda. Chamber music? Unless it’s main stage at Carnegie Hall you’ll be lucky to find it in the Times. New music? Likewise.

Our friend Larry Johnson has come up with a remedy. Starting in South Florida and moving up to Boston and Chicago, he has founded Classical Review websites that cover and review the live and recorded music that never gets into print – along with much that does. His websites have begun to make money. Larry has just been been named one of Chicago’s most influential music people.

Today, he announces the launch of a New York Classical Review, which will start publication in September. The holes in the Times will be exposed on a daily basis. Here’s what Larry has to say:


New York Classical Review will cover the largest and most active classical scene in the country with the same candor, independence and smart, lively writing that have featured in our other regional sites in Boston, Chicago and South Florida.  As elsewhere, the major local organizations (the Metropolitan Opera, New York Philharmonic, Carnegie Hall) will be covered but we will also actively seek out the offbeat, the unusual, and the lesser known, with an emphasis on contemporary music and rarely heard repertory.


Lawrence A. Johnson

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  1. If he’s going to seek out the offbeat with an emphasis on contemporary, then no, I don’t think going to give the NY Times much competition! Those things are dying in NY for a reason.

  2. Bravo Larry.

    Now all that is left is to make one, final attempt to get the CD/DVD portion of your review site running again!

  3. The question now is: how much does this cost? We have seen this before in New York with the New York Concert Review. They charge a whopping $475! As always, the musician gets the short end of the stick. Maybe this time it will be different.

    • While we welcome advertising from all quarters, we do not charge for reviews. Period. That would be unethical and an insult to the groups that merit coverage. As on our other sites, we will cover the most important and most interesting events in New York and environs without any quid pro quo.

  4. Thanks much, Norman for the shout-out. Just want to add that there is no animus against the New York TImes on my part. I have several friends working there, including our former TCR ace Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim. Rather, as with our other sites, the goal of New York Classical Review will be to let a thousand flowers bloom—journalistically speaking—and add something new to the mix of classical coverage in NYC.

    Larry Johnson

  5. Bravo! Bravo! Please consider coming to Toronto!! Ann

  6. The Times has such (relatively) robust coverage of theater, architecture, visual art, film, television. I don’t understand why concert music has fallen so badly to the wayside.

  7. Rosalind says:

    Larry, good luck with your new venture, I’m sure it will flourish.

  8. Gary Schneider says:

    This is very good news and will be a boon to the New York music community. I greatly look forward to following NYCR. However, the NYT should not feel they are off the hook now for not expanding their coverage to include far more of the exciting musical activity that is currently making waves in New York City. It is today’s lesser known innovators that are changing the concert scene. Already, The NY Phil and Mostly Mozart are adding musical fare that had only previously been available off the beaten path in NYC. Perhaps solid coverage by NYCR will help change the dynamic of concert coverage in the Big Apple. I heartily applaud the endeavor.

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