A milestone in contemporary opera – John Adams conducts Girls of the Golden West with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, featuring a stupendous cast

John Adams on the podium. © Riccardo Musacchio To those who might have wondered what it would have been like to take notes from a musical conversation between Mozart, Berlioz, the Gershwins, Duke Ellington and Leonard Bernstein, John Adams’s gripping Gold Rush opera Girls of the Golden West (2015-17/2022) provides the most splendid answer. Given... Continue Reading →

From symphonic Beethoven to John Williams world premiere with Emanuel Ax, Leonidas Kavakos and Yo-Yo Ma

Partnership in Beethoven: Yo-Yo Ma, Emanuel Ax and Leonidas Kavakos Joined onstage at Walt Disney Concert Hall for Saturday afternoon’s Colburn Celebrity Recital, pianist Emanuel Ax, violinist Leondas Kavakos and cellist Yo-Yo Ma took the almost sold-out house on a veritable joyride through the Ludwig van Beethoven realm with their invigorating performances of two of... Continue Reading →

Salonen’s scintillating Organ Concerto comes to life in Berlin

Esa-Pekka Salonen and Olivier Latry onstage with Berliner Philharmoniker after the German premiere of Salonen's Sinfonia Concertante for Organ and Orchestra (2020-22) on Thursday. © Stephan Rabold Joined by Composer-in-Residence Esa-Pekka Salonen on the podium, the full line-up of the Berliner Philharmoniker was gathered onstage at the Philharmonie on Thursday, to deliver a ravishing outing... Continue Reading →

Top albums of 2022: Bruckner 4 according to LSO and Rattle

As judged by his contemporaries, Anton Bruckner the symphonist hardly received unanimous praise. Some success notwithstanding, the composer spent most of his life treading an uphill road towards the symphonic pantheon. In hindsight, his oeuvre stands out as a striking cycle of works-in-progress, out of which dazzling symphonic metamorphoses may be dissected. Thanks to their... Continue Reading →

The gospel according to Saariaho and Maalouf – Absorbing ritual of La Passion de Simone in Helsinki

Sayuri Araida, Isabelle Seleskovitch, Faustine de Monès, Marianne Seleskovitch, Johan Viau, Johannes Linneballe and Avanti! Chamber Orchestra performing La Passion de Simone under Clément Mao-Takacs in Helsinki. © Markku Pihlaja As the expression goes, good things come to those who wait. This was certainly true in Helsinki on Thursday and Friday evenings, as Kaija Saariaho’s... Continue Reading →

Top albums of 2022: Saluting the cinematic horn concerto – John Williams’s Always in pristine expanded edition from La-La Land

As appropriate for celebrating John Williams’s ninetieth birthday year, there has been numerous festivities around the globe, featuring the maestro himself guest-conducting orchestras from Cleveland to Milan, new film scores being recorded in the studio under his baton, as well as several album releases and re-releases, documenting the composer’s work for the screen and the... Continue Reading →

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