wed 15/08/2018

Classical Features

The Seckerson Tapes: Opera North's Howard Assembly Room

Edward Seckerson

Opera North's Howard Assembly Room (above) is no longer a well-kept secret. Lovingly restored to its former Victorian glory, this one-time annexe to the Grand Theatre, Leeds, has had a chequered history - even briefly servicing the furtive mackintosh brigade as a picture palace of the bluest persuasion. Now, though, it's been born again as a vibrant performance space. A new season of events under the umbrella title of VOICES is about to launch featuring acts as diverse as The Tallis Scholars,...

Read more...

The V&A is Wrong

ismene Brown

I took advantage of one of the last "extra" opening days the V&A is offering for its musical instruments gallery to check out the fuss. Having been sitting on the fence - sympathetic to the pleas for historic fashion displays, though drawn by my background as a violist and pianist to the music side - I came out fuming.

Read more...

theartsdesk in Baku: Festival puts 'Azerbai-where?' on the map

Tom Birchenough

It’s a rare national culture festival that presupposes its audience will have no knowledge whatsoever of the culture concerned - or even be able to locate the country itself on a map. But that, we must assume from the “Azerbai-where?” promotional bus ads, was the starting point last November for organisers of the BUTA Festival of Azerbaijan Art, a series of very well-connected art and music events in London going on this month.

Read more...

Ottorino Respighi, the forgotten composer

william Ward Ottorino Respighi: more than picturesque

The latest subject in the BBC Four series of composer portraits by Christopher Nupen is Ottorino Respighi. One of the most unfairly neglected major composers of the first half of the 20th century, his reputation has suffered less from not being considered at all, but for having been confined to his trilogy of tone poems that evoke respectively the...

Read more...

The Seckerson Tapes: Lenny Bernstein's right-hand man, Craig Urquhart

Edward Seckerson Conductor Leonard Bernstein at the Royal Festival Hall, London

Craig Urquhart was Leonard Bernstein's personal assistant for the last five years of his life. In this touchingly frank interview he talks about the man he knew, the man he revered, the man who wanted to be all things to all people and who consistently pushed himself to the limit in the service of the music that drove him.

Read more...

The Seckerson Tapes: Craig Urquhart, Lenny's right hand man

Edward Seckerson Lenny Bernstein (left) with Craig Urquhart at the Berlin Wall

Read more...

The Seckerson Tapes: Craig Urquhart, Lenny's right hand man

Edward Seckerson Lenny Bernstein (left) with Craig Urquhart at the Berlin Wall

Craig Urquhart was Leonard Bernstein's personal assistant for the last five years of his life. In this touchingly frank interview with Edward Seckerson he talks about the man he knew, the man he revered, the man who wanted to be all things to all people and who consistently pushed himself to the limit in the service of the music that drove him.

The Bernstein Project is a ten-month celebration of Leonard Bernstein - one of the most charismatic men of the 20th...

Read more...

Christopher Nupen on Filming Music and Musicians

Hilary Whitney Nupen at work: 'Filmmaking is storytelling'

"What is it about Schubert’s music that has such power 180 years on?  It has nothing to do with who he slept with or what he had for breakfast – it’s the work," insists filmmaker Christopher Nupen, whose series of films about composers is currently showing on BBC Four. "If you’re dragged towards the quotidian and the sensational, you’ll be pulled away from that elusive essence in the work that nobody has ever succeeded in explaining, but which remains one of the highest expressions of the human...

Read more...

Interview: Maria Luigia Borsi, singing in the Italian tradition

Adam Sweeting 'Yes, I'm Italian!': Maria Luigia Borsi

In this era of spectacular divas from Russia, Latvia and Romania, it is often remarked that the Italian lyric soprano is a commodity in distressingly short supply. Hoping to rectify that sorry situation is Tuscany’s Maria Luigia Borsi, who will be making her London debut at the Wigmore Hall on Sunday, singing a luxuriant programme of Puccini, Catalani and Mascagni.

Read more...

The Seckerson Tapes: Vasily Petrenko's Shostakovich

Edward Seckerson

The charismatic St Petersburg-born Vasily Petrenko has really been turning things around at the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra since he took over as Principal Conductor in 2005. With both standards and audiences on the up he has embarked upon his first major recording project – to record all 15 Shostakovich Symphonies for the Naxos label.

Read more...

Pages

Subscribe to theartsdesk.com

Thank you for continuing to read our work on theartsdesk.com. For unlimited access to every article in its entirety, including our archive of more than 10,000 pieces, we're asking for £3.95 per month or £30 per year. We feel it's a very good deal, and hope you do too.

To take an annual subscription now simply click here.

And if you're looking for that extra gift for a friend or family member, why not treat them to a theartsdesk.com gift subscription?

latest in today

On the Edge, Channel 4, review - fast and furious new dramas

Television drama is living through a golden age, yes, but...

Edinburgh Fringe 2018: Luisa Omielan/ Brennan Reece/ Olga Ko...

Luisa Omielan ★★★★

Luisa Omiela, a confirmed party girl, is the first to admit she used to...

The Best Plays in London

London is the theatre capital of the world, with more than 50 playhouses offering theatrical entertainment. From the mighty National Theatre to...

F Off: National Youth Theatre puts social media on trial

F Off came about off the back of a meeting I had with Paul Roseby, the artistic director of the National Youth Theatre of Great Britain....

DVD: Arcadia

Arcadia is the latest and the best of a series of films which draw on the archives of the...

Prom 42, Buniatishvili, Estonian Festival Orchestra, Järvi r...

Music-lovers who normally balk at the sight of national colours in a concert hall would surely have forgiven the little...

Greed as the keynote: Robert Carsen on the timelessness of...

In the time of composer John Gay, greed and self-interest were the main motives for life; and his work The Beggar’s Opera is an open...

Edinburgh Festival 2018 reviews: Nigel Slater's Toast /...

 

Nigel Slater's Toast ★★★★  

“It’s...