“I would describe us now as being in a relatively stable space but also a very creative space, where we have good relationships, a good contract in place, good operations and we’re in the midst of a strategic planning process that will help us drive the direction for the next five years.”
“The challenge is to find an integrated approach that enlarges the number of people who are in our orbit,” he says. “As demographics change and people become more distracted, the notion of how you create compelling experiences on stage and how you build vast community around them is, I think, the next frontier. I don’t think we fully know how to do that yet.”
“Set against a backdrop of the dreamy mountains of Labëria in southern Albania, Washed by the Moon, British/German filmmaker Dan Shutt’s directorial debut, is a rich journey through the region’s musical history. … We invited the director to compile a mix that encapsulates the ancient Albanian tradition of isopolyphonic singing.”
Tim Smith reports on the lawsuit filed by principal oboist Katherine Needleman against the orchestra and concertmaster Jonathan Carney and on an attorney’s investigation into sexual harassment and the workenvironment at the BSO. “The two documents brim with details of unprofessional behavior inside the orchestra, onstage and off – propositioning in a hotel room and a women’s restroom, discussion of ‘pesones‘ (Spanish for nipples), making faces and mocking gestures during rehearsals or concerts.”
“Eyellusion, the hologram entertainment company behind tours for Frank Zappa and Ronnie James Dio, is working with Gould’s rights holder, Primary Wave Music Publishing, on a Glenn Gould Hologram Tour with dates expected to be announced in late 2019. “
The new upload feature won’t work like SoundCloud, where songs can be instantly available. Instead, Spotify views it as a way for artists to have control over their own music in advance of its release date. Those who are part of the program will be shown an interface where they can upload their music and accompanying artwork, pick a release day, input additional information (like if it’s a single or an album), and then preview how it will look once published. Direct upload is being offered as a free service.
Reporter Michael Cooper and photographer Nina Westervelt follow the Phil’s new music director through his first week on the job — unpacking his office, meeting with CEO Deborah Borda, strategizing with his publicist, taking selfies with passersby who recognize him from the ads around town, and (of course), rehearsing for the opening night concert.
The venue’s CEO, Alex Beard, describes the $66 million project as “a bit like having open-heart surgery while going for a run.” The architect said that “We had meetings every day where we’d work out the little windows of time we could make noise.” Alex Marshall reports on the results, including a much larger foyer, a cafe, more ladies’ loos, and a complete upgrade of the ROH’s 406-seat Linbury Theatre.
ASCAP CEO Elizabeth Matthews said: “Today’s unanimous passage of the Music Modernization Act in the Senate represents a Herculean industry-wide effort to promote and celebrate songwriters and ensure their right to a sustainable livelihood. We applaud Senators Hatch, Alexander, Grassley, Feinstein, Whitehouse, Coons and the entire Senate for recognizing the value music has in both society and our hearts.”
The La Jolla Music Society, which presents touring classical and dance artists in metro San Diego, announced in late July that Florida Grand Opera executive director Susan T. Danis would become the Society’s CEO and lead its move into a new venue. Seven weeks later, following a “defamatory letter” about Danis that was sent to the La Jolla board, and later retracted, by a former FGO staffer, the vindicated Danis decided nevertheless to give up the job in La Jolla and remain at FGO. George Varga explains (as far as possible).
On Monday, the orchestra was at Charles de Gaulle Airport outside Paris, waiting to depart for that evening’s concert in Amsterdam, the final performance of the tour — only to find out that their chartered aircraft had mechanical problems and could not fly. No trains or buses were available for all 110 musicians (not counting staff and patrons) to get to Amsterdam in time: the only option was a 76-seat propeller plane. 76 musicians are not enough to perform Shostakovich’s Fourth Symphony, the main work on the program. Zoë Madonna reports on what happened next.
Musical rethinks, such as the addition of a chamber music round and contemporary music among the programme requirements, helped ensure that a more rounded and versatile musician was on show; finalists’ communication skills were further tested with the submission of a short written piece about their choice of repertoire.
“In an interview with The Washington Post, principal oboe player Katherine Needleman said that Jonathan Carney, the orchestra’s concertmaster, approached her for sex when the orchestra was on tour in 2005 and, since she rejected him, has engaged in a consistent pattern of retaliation: ‘daily hostility and efforts to undermine [my] work and authority,’ she said, ‘combined with physical intimidation and threats.'”
“Starting with the 2020-21 season — the orchestra’s 99th — the new music director will be Gustavo Gimeno, a 42-year-old native of Valencia, Spain, who has been serving as music director of the Luxembourg Philharmonic Orchestra since 2015. His TSO contract will be for five years. Sir Andrew Davis, who was music director from 1975 to 1988, is acting as interim artistic director.”
Last week, James Rhodes recorded a short video of himself playing a portion of Bach’s first Partita and posted it to Facebook. Bach died in 1750, so the music is obviously in the public domain. But that didn’t stop Sony from claiming the rights to the audio in Partita’s video. “Your video matches 47 seconds of audio owned by Sony Music Entertainment,” said a notice Rhodes received on Facebook. Facebook responded by muting the audio in Rhodes’ video.
In the wake of the #MeToo movement, and a growing consensus that the creators of the 21st century’s cultural artifacts cannot exclusively be white males, some of America’s most prominent ensembles are programming more works by women than ever before.
“We should expect to see an age-related decline in performance after the age of 40,” the study says. “This is borne out by the answers given by the musicians surveyed. On average, 41 percent of orchestral musicians have noticed at least once that their performance has declined due to age-related factors.”
Allen is frustrated “that she did not confront or report the man’s behaviour, and carried on working with him, explaining that she felt silenced because he had more power and money than her, and that she feared being labelled ‘hysterical’ and a ‘difficult woman.'” And she says she’s far from alone.
The dismissal of its principal oboist, Liang Wang, and associate principal trumpet, Matthew Muckey, is on hold while the union investigates, but the musicians are on unpaid leave. “The orchestra said in a terse statement only that after it had received reports that the two players had ‘engaged in misconduct,’ it retained Barbara S. Jones, an attorney at Bracewell and a former federal judge, to investigate. An orchestra official said the investigation took five months.”
Online lessons have changed the way many students learn the piano, especially jazz – and maybe made learning better and faster. Perhaps there is “something about the peculiar intimacy of the online lesson — the way it permits a student to scrutinize a teacher’s subtlest movements — that has transformed the learning process.”
The trombonist, Massimo La Rosa, has filed his own lawsuit “accusing two people of defamation for alleging that he ‘had committed and was criminally culpable for multiple sexual assaults on numerous college campuses [where La Rosa] had been invited to serve as a guest instructor.’ The orchestra did not specify whether the current suspension was related to the same or similar allegations.”
Whoa, whoa, whoa, what? Yep: “The unions representing the Met’s orchestra, chorus and several other groups finished ratifying a new contract this week that will pave the way to a change, as the company, facing a worrisome decline in attendance, has realized that audiences find it increasingly difficult to squeeze in lengthy operas on weeknights.”
The accident led to the discovery of other, more insidious problems: Matteo’s three-hundred-year-old insides were collapsing. The top was losing its arch; the cracks were widening. “A domino effect,” Matt Haimovitz said. He visited every two months. Once, he arrived to find cello parts scattered around the room, attended to by different experts, like an intensive-care unit. “For thirty years, it goes everywhere with me, and then, so suddenly, not to have it around? And then to see it—” He broke off, full of emotion.
Pope Francis has authorized an investigation into “possible financial irregularities” within the Sistine Chapel Choir, Reuters reports.
Tovey, 65, recently stepped down as head of Canada’s Vancouver Symphony, where he was music director for the past 18 years, conducting as many as 50 concerts a season. He is also principal conductor of the BBC Concert Orchestra in England, and last year was named head of conducting studies at Boston University, where his 20-year-old daughter Jessica is a violin major.
“The LSO East London Academy will open in spring 2019 and will aim to identify and develop the potential of talented people between the age of 11-18. It will be a bridge between secondary schools and conservatoires. Crucially it will be free, offering training that can normally cost as much as £3,000 a year.”
The Erato recording of Berlioz’s opera, co-starring Marie-Nicole Lemieux, Stéphane Degout and Michael Spyres with John Nelson conducting the Strasbourg Philharmonic, won the magazine’s top award. Orchestra of the Year, won by the Seattle Symphony, is a new prize chosen by public online vote. Conductor Neeme Järvi received a Lifetime Achievement Award. Baroque violinist Rachel Podger was named Artist of the Year.
Artist managers are often drawn from the ranks of graduates in performance, musicology or related fields. Their passion for classical music makes them vulnerable to exploitation such as low starting salaries and unpaid overtime.
“Indeed, the musical performance had invigorated the crowd. The audience passionately chanted patriotic slogans, stormed into government buildings, and began destroying factory machinery. Within days, they were flying the flag of Independent Belgium, which was tied to a standard with shoelaces.” Lucas Reilly recounts the story of William I of the United Kingdom of the Netherlands, Daniel Auber’s La Muette de Portici, and the Belgian Revolution of 1830.
I have served as Chairperson and panelist for countless composer competitions and residencies over the course of the past twenty years. I have yet to witness any winner be selected because of a resumé stuffed with Important Sounding Awards. Not one. When the panelists and I looked at someone’s attached C.V., it was often just a passing glance. The composers who received these juried opportunities were selected because of one marvelous thing: the excellence and creativity of their music. Imagine that. And keep it in mind.