wed 08/07/2020

Classical music

'She spoke through her violin': Steven Isserlis on extraordinary meetings with Ida Haendel (192?-2020)

So Ida has left us – a legend has departed. What a violinist! What a woman! Magnificent, unique, incorrigible – she was a law unto herself.First, the playing: a film about her was aptly entitled: “I AM the Violin.” And she was! The violin was her...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Holst, Nielsen, Piatti, Tchaikovsky

 Holst: The Planets; Nielsen: Helios Overture Mythos (Bjarke Mogensen and Rasmus Schjaerff Kjøller, accordions) (Mythos)Pairing Nielsen’s Helios Overture with Holst’s The Planets makes total sense, and one’s surprised that it’s not been done...

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‘We are still standing and planning for the brightest future we can’: Svend McEwan-Brown on the survival of a festival

They say that you discover who your true friends are when you find yourself in direst need. East Neuk Festival, our success story on the Fife coast, which should have been happening this week, faced the deepest crisis in its 16-year history this...

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Mark Padmore, Mitsuko Uchida/ Benjamin Baker, Timothy Ridout, Wigmore Hall online/BBC Radio 3 review – hail and farewell

Of course, we just had to end with a midsummer Winterreise. The Wigmore Hall’s month of lockdown concerts for BBC Radio 3 had begun with a legendary elegy – the Chaconne from Bach’s D minor Partita, written according to musical folklore in memory of...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Enescu, Mendelssohn, Tuur, Sara Stowe

 Mendelssohn: Octet, Enescu: Octet Gringolts Quartet & Meta4 (BIS)Mendelssohn began work on his delicious Octet at the age of 16. He’d been composing for several years previously, though this work, along with the equally miraculous overture...

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'Composing supports children to understand music from the inside': educator Nancy Evans on a revolution in primary schools

Next month (July 2020) marks 20 years since I started work at Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, initially as their first Education Manager and then in my current role as Director of Learning and Participation. So when we were awarded a...

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Live from Covent Garden 2, Royal Opera and Ballet online review - heaven and earth in a nutshell

Solitude, mortality and transcendence have never been more profoundly expressed in music than by Mahler, who composed Das Lied von der Erde (The Song of the Earth) in the valley of the shadow of death (too superstitious to give it the name of Ninth...

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Alina Ibragimova, Kristian Bezuidenhout/Iestyn Davies, Elizabeth Kenny, Wigmore Hall online/BBC Radio 3 review - two perfect pairings

Last Tuesday’s offering from the Wigmore Hall’s series of live broadcasts was a fiery recital from Russian violinist Alina Ibragimova partnered by pianist Kristian Bezuidenhout. Beginning with Schubert’s Violin Sonata "Sonatina" in A minor...

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'We must channel the energy and pain that is being expressed right now': Chi-chi Nwanoku OBE on time for action on diversity in classical music

The worldwide reaction to the horrific murder of George Floyd via the renewed focus on the Black Lives Matter movement is not a minority issue. It concerns people of all ethnicities, education and economic backgrounds who want a better, fairer world...

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Ailish Tynan, Iain Burnside/Allan Clayton, James Baillieu, Wigmore Hall online/BBC Radio 3 review – alone together

Loneliness haunts the solo song – not simply all those solitary wanderers and defiant wayfarers of the Lied tradition, but the forsaken lovers and questing pilgrims who fill the folk-song repertoire of many lands. So, amid the general poignancy of...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Franck, Holger Falk, Ursula Paludan Monberg

 Franck: Psyché, Le Chasseur maudit, Les Éolides RCS Voices, Royal Scottish National Orchestra/Jean-Luc Tingaud (Naxos)Franck by Franck: Symphony in D Minor, Ce qu’on entend sur la montagne Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France/Mikko Franck...

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Classical music/Opera direct to home 16 - putting freelancers first

The latest wave of musicians to make their voices heard comes from the freelancers who haven't been able to claim anything so far for their loss of income and of the ability to work together. As a group of top players putting out their plea observes...

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