Thomas Quasthoff at Carnegie Hall

Thursday, May 06, 2010

I've been waiting for years to go to a Thomas Quasthoff concert. I'd seen him on T.V. and listened to his recordings, but last night I finally got to hear him in person at Carnegie Hall.

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WQXR - It's Everywhere You Want To Be

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

A few weeks ago I got a text message from a friend saying she was listening to me on air at a bodega in Brooklyn. Just last week I listened to my colleague Midge Woolsey while at my doctor’s office in Manhattan.

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Cooking With Classical Music

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

I was rearranging some of my books recently and came across my copy of Kitchen Classics with the Philharmonic by my former WQXR colleague June Lebell (great book, btw). It made me think how important it is to have the right music playing when you are preparing meals.

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Boo Hoo

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Recently the much loved opera tenor Placido Domingo stepped on stage into his 131st role at the age of 69 after undergoing colon cancer surgery. While he had given millions of opera lovers decades of joy and zillions of notes, how was he thanked? By being booed! People paid good money and sat for hours to see a super star in the world of opera return after a possibly life threatening illness--and he was booed!!

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"Songs My Mother Taught Me"

Saturday, May 01, 2010

Mother’s Day is coming up and we’d like to invite you to contribute some fun musical programming ideas. What comes to your mind when you mix classical music and mothers?

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Are Choreographers’ Styles Immediately Recognizable?

Thursday, April 29, 2010

The New York Times dance critic Roslyn Sulcas is absolutely correct when she says, “Although we don’t think about it much in daily life, the way someone moves is as distinctive as a voice or facial features. Of course some movements, voices or features are more striking than others.”

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A Wonderful Life

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Good morning, good day! It's Pulitzer-Prize-winning lyricist Sheldon Harnick's 86th birthday. Isn't it wonderful?

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A Misappropriation of Music

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

A few nights ago I saw a commercial for a video game called "Tom Clancy's Conviction."  The ad depicted a father, automatic rifle in tow, walking through an abandoned town Wild, Wild West-style. Here’s the juicy part: the theme music in the ad was the spiritual “Run on for a Long Time.”

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Speaking of Performances...How Do You Feel About Reviews?

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Recently I went to see the play RED on Broadway.  Because I knew that it was about the artist Mark Rothko, I spent some time reading about his life and work before I went. However, I did not read any reviews or informational pieces about the actual play until after I saw it. A couple of days after the performance, I had a ball reading as many reviews as I could find! For the most part, I found I agreed with the various critics.  But, there was one who I felt missed the point of the show entirely. Interesting.

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Ticket Sales Move Online, Get More Expensive

Monday, April 26, 2010

Once upon a time (when I was in college), the best way to get good tickets to a hot concert was to bundle up, sit outside the theatre overnight and wait for the box office to open. There was almost always a line of like-minded (or out-of-their-minded) souls, ready to share donuts or coffee or a cigarette of whatever vintage--we passed the time playing cards, flirting with cute boys ahead of us and angling to keep scalpers away from the front of the line.

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Unusual Performance Venues

Monday, April 26, 2010

Tonight at 8 o'clock, WQXR offers a Web cast--a broadcast exclusively on our Web stream at WQXR.org--of a concert by the Emerson String Quartet.

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Going to the Theater

Friday, April 23, 2010

I'm going to the theater more often than I used to.

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When Does "New Music" Stop Being New?

Thursday, April 22, 2010

This past weekend, I performed a wonderful 19-year-old piece: Four Seasons of Futurist Cuisine, by Aaron Jay Kernis, on a program that also included "Four Seasons" compositions by Antonio Vivaldi and Astor Piazzolla.

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It's All in the Fingers

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Recently I went to a birthday party where there was a piano. When asked to play, I had one piece in my fingers, the Op. 118 Intermezzo by Brahms--the Intermezzo isn't party music. That incident reminded me of a piano teacher saying "always have a piece in your fingers." In this case I needed two.

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"Revisals" Vs. Revivals: Changing Musicals' Original Playbooks

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

There's an article in today's Wall Street Journal that gave me pause. It talks about how some producers and directors of musical theatre are tinkering with many musicals' original playbook; adding or subtracting songs, replacing dialogue that might sound out of date--essentially changing something written in or for a specific place and time.

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Chamber Music In Any Chamber

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

When I was in high school, I took the Metro-North into New York City every weekend to study classical music. Those weekends I would often end up hanging out with friends in Greenwich Village, and I soon discovered the fading--but still vibrant--jazz scene in places like the Village Vanguard and Smalls.

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Georgia Budget Shortfall Could Put Arts Funding in Jeopardy

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

As with many states across the country, lawmakers in Georgia are facing a big budget shortfall. One of their proposals to help close the gap would eliminate the Georgia Council for the Arts, which supports the arts statewide.

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All Roads Lead (Back) to Rome

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Greetings after a grand hiatus in my blogging activity, due to a healthy-sized sojourn back on home soil (East and West coasts of the U.S.), and some adventures within Italy too, including a recent visit to nearby Palestrina, birthplace of Giovanni Pierluigi da... (Palestrina), memorialized here as the Prince of Music:

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Frederica von Stade and The Decision to Retire

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

This Thursday, the beloved American mezzo-soprano Frederica von Stade (known as ‘Flicka’) will sing her farewell recital at Carnegie Hall. When I was a young singer, Frederica von Stade was an important role model for many of us--a young, talented, attractive, hometown girl who made it big! Needless to say, her retirement will serve as a major benchmark in my life.

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Comments [23]

Is There a New Paradigm for Publically Subsidized Arts Organizations?

Monday, April 19, 2010

Do state-subsidized arts companies have a bigger responsibility to present great art or to sell tickets to the tourists who make up a good chunk of their audience?

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