Saturday, March 8, 2008
Today's Birthday in Music: March 8 (CPE Bach)
Friday, March 7, 2008
Today's Birthday in Music: March 7 (Ravel)
Thursday, March 6, 2008
Today's Birthdays in Music: March 6 (Te Kanawa, Maazel, Nézet-Séguin)
Kiri Te Kanawa sings "Chi il bel sogno di Doretta" from Puccini's La Rondine. New Zealand Wellington outdoor concert in 1990.
1930 - Lorin Maazel, Neuilly-sur-Seine, France; conductor
New York Philharmonic, conducted by Lorin Maazel, plays Korean folksong "Arirang" during North Korean visit (February 2008)
1975 - Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Québec, Canada; conductor
Yannick Nézet-Séguin — A Soaring Talent (La Scena Musicale, Februay 2000)
Yannick Nézet-Séguin — un talent sans mesure (La Scena Musicale, février 2000)
Rotterdam Philharmonic conducted by Nézet-Séguin (January 2008)
Wednesday, March 5, 2008
CBC Radio 2 Changes Programming - Less Classical More Pop
This morning's Globe and Mail reports that
The changes were announced Tuesday by Jennifer McGuire, executive director of English programming for CBC Radio.
Radio Two will remain a music station, with an emphasis on classical and boosted Canadian content after the final phase of the redesign, she said.
The plan for weekday programming on CBC Radio Two is:
- 6-10 a.m.: A music program dedicated to a range of genres, including classical, pop, jazz and roots music.
- 10 a.m.-3 p.m.: A classical program that will emphasize the most popular and accessible classical music, including Mozart, Beethoven and other favourites.
- 3-6 p.m.: A drive-home show focusing on vocal music, including many new artists.
The format for the morning program also will continue on weekend mornings, with a different host.
The proposed all-day all-classical and all-jazz web stations, already in service on the French CBC, are red-herrings; if someone wants to listen to classical or jazz online, there are already thousands of web radio stations, and one or two more won't make a dent.
In September, Radio 2 will also launch separate all-day all-classical, all-jazz and all-singer-songwriter stations on the Internet. Radio 3 will remain an Internet- and satellite-based service. However, one petitioner among a vocal group of listeners, musicians and composers who have criticized the overhaul argued yesterday that even an all-classical Web-based service wouldn't rectify the fact that Radio 2's on-air, non-classical programs are moving away from what had been the network's core listeners.
While acknowledging that change always meets opposition, Jennifer McGuire, executive director of radio, said that overall ratings haven't dropped as significantly as anticipated, as some listeners tune out and new ones tune in. She also emphasized that only a tiny fraction - 0.8 per cent - of new Canadian songs get commercial radio play and that the Radio 2 changes will allow for much more Canadian music to be heard, from pop to experimental.
But, "people who like classical music can still find classical music on Radio 2. In fact, it is still the most represented single genre on the service," McGuire said.
The announcement has stirred up passion amongst CBC Radio 2 listeners. Both reports were filled with comments (see G&M comments; comments to the CBC story is at the bottom of the page), mostly lamenting the lost of classical music.
The bigger question is what is the role of a public broadcaster. Supporters of the change put forth the argument that a public broadcaster should serve all of its citizens. The consequence of this argument is that the public broadcaster would end up chasing ratings, as this plan aims to do. Ratings are the currency to justify the broadcaster's existence to its political masters. Historically, the role of a public broadcaster is to offer quality programming rather than follow the motives of commercial media. Favouring quantity over quality is usual a passing fad. Hopefully, saner minds will prevail, one day. Let us know what you think in the comments section or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bach : Le Clavier bien tempéré, Livre 2
Mirare MIR 044
2 CD: 133 min 10 s
Dans les notes de programme données sous forme d’entrevue, la grande pianiste chinoise installée maintenant à Paris, déclare avoir voulu humaniser le Clavier bien tempéré, en montrer la sensibilité plutôt que l’architecture ou la rigueur mathématique, et elle pose comme exigence première à l’interprète de « savoir danser et chanter ». On peut dire que sa mission est accomplie, car rarement exécution du deuxième cahier aura-t-elle été aussi fluide et lyrique à la fois. Avec une dynamique subtile et une accentuation d’une grande souplesse, aidée aussi par un travail sur la pédale qui équivaut, selon son expression, à « un vrai toucher avec les pieds », Zhu Xiao-Mei réussit son pari non seulement pour les préludes qu’elle débarrasse de toute préoccupation virtuose ou technique, mais aussi avec les fugues qui trouvent sous ses doigts une musicalité de tous les instants; leurs sujets se transforment en mélodie et leur structure en continuité, toute barre de mesure semblant ici abolie. Les quarante-huit pièces se laissent écouter comme une suite et la fin de chacune d’elles arrive toujours en surprise. Une des très belles versions au piano de cet « Ancien Testament » de la musique. À quand donc le premier cahier ?
Buy this CD at mirare.fr
Today's Birthdays in Music: March 5 (Donalda, Villa-Lobos)
Epilogue: Prima Donna Donalda
1887 - Heitor Villa-Lobos, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; composer
Villa-Lobos - Prelude No.5, played by John Williams
Tuesday, March 4, 2008
Today's Birthday in Music: March 4 (Vivaldi)
"Winter" from The Four Seasons (Itzhak Perlman, Zubin Mehta, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra)
Stabat Mater, Mvts. 8-9 (Andreas Scholl, countertenor)
Double mandolin concerto, RV 558 - Andante
Monday, March 3, 2008
Today's Birthdays in Music: March 3 (Wood, Quivar)
Last Night of the Proms 1998: Andrew Davis leads a rousing rendition of Hubert Parry's Jerusalem (BBC Symphony Orchestra, BBC Singers, and BBC Symphony Chorus, backed up by the audience at the Royal Albert Hall, and at the Proms in the Park
1944 - Florence Quivar, Philadelphia, USA; opera mezzo-soprano
Florence Quivar as Ulrica in Verdi's Un Ballo in Maschera (The Met, 1990
Sunday, March 2, 2008
La Scena Musicale March 2008 Issue Online in HTML and PDF Formats
LSM’s March issue features violinist Laurence Kayaleh and her recital partner, pianist Paul Stewart. Together, they are releasing a disc this month on the
Next LSM Benefit Event
Labels: LSM News
Today's Birthdays in Music: March 2 (Smetana, Weill)
"The Moldau" ("Vltava") from Smetana's Má Vlast (Rafael Kubelik, Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, 1990)
1900 - Kurt Weill, Dessau, Germany; composer
From the Los Angeles Opera production of Weill's Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny