Arts

Deceptive Cadence
1:03 pm
Wed October 9, 2013

Act Like You Know: Giuseppe Verdi

Don't be caught fishing for facts about Verdi on the bicentennial of his birth.
Getty Images/DeAgostini

Originally published on Tue November 19, 2013 11:52 am

It's that time of year again when freshly steamed curtains are rising on opera stages across the country, introducing another new season of performances. And this time, one composer will be popping up more than usual — Giuseppe Verdi.

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Deceptive Cadence
4:36 pm
Tue October 8, 2013

Verdi's Gift: Wringing Catchy Music From Touchy Subjects

In his operas, Giuseppe Verdi had a knack for empowering marginalized people — like the title character of Aida, who is an enslaved Ethiopian princess (played in this 2011 French production by American soprano Indra Thomas).
Gerard Julien AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 8, 2013 7:24 pm

Two hundred years ago this week, Giuseppe Verdi was born in an Italian town midway between Bologna and Milan. On the occasion of his bicentennial, All Things Considered wanted to know what makes the great opera composer so enduring — why his work is still so frequently discussed and performed these two centuries later. The answer, says conductor and arranger John Mauceri, is that Verdi had a knack for making thorny topics accessible.

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Deceptive Cadence
8:03 am
Mon October 7, 2013

Guest DJ Angela Meade: Hitting The Big Time With Help From Verdi

Soprano Angela Meade made her professional debut in the role of Elvira in Verdi's Ernani at the Metropolitan Opera.
Marty Sohl Metropolitan Opera

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 1:23 pm

Most opera singers work their way to the big league by singing bit parts in regional opera houses. Not soprano Angela Meade. She landed on top instantly with her professional debut in the lead soprano role of Giuseppe Verdi's Ernani at New York's Metropolitan Opera in 2008.

It was a dream come true. The star soprano took ill and the understudy, Meade, was suddenly shoved into the spotlight. The press said she sang "like an old pro from start to finish."

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Music Interviews
12:03 pm
Sun October 6, 2013

Returning To Music, Tested By Loss

Cellist and composer Erik Friedlander's new album is titled Claws & Wings.
Angelo Merendino Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun October 6, 2013 5:06 pm

Cellist and composer Erik Friedlander lost his wife of many years, dancer and choreographer Lynn Shapiro, to breast cancer in 2011. She'd been diagnosed a decade earlier, and Friedlander says music became a place of vital release for him as her condition worsened.

"During the difficult years, I did take refuge in working," he says. "It was a place where I could make the rules; where I could control what I could control."

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Deceptive Cadence
5:45 pm
Sat October 5, 2013

How Verdi Improved On Shakespeare

Johan Botha as the title character and Renée Fleming as Desdemona in the Metropolitan Opera's fall 2012 run of Verdi's Otello.
Ken Howard Metropolitan Opera

Originally published on Wed October 9, 2013 3:22 pm

This past week may have been a rough one for the classical world, but there is something to look forward to.

This coming week, we celebrate the 200th birthday of Giuseppe Verdi, composer of the best opera of all time. (That's right, Wagner fans. Start writing those letters.)

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Deceptive Cadence
3:13 pm
Sat October 5, 2013

It's Been A Really Bad Week For Classical Music

In Minneapolis, demonstrations in support of musicians have drawn regular support during the yearlong Minnesota Orchestra labor dispute.
Euan Kerr Minnesota Public Radio

Originally published on Sat October 5, 2013 6:36 pm

The world of classical music has had a very turbulent week. Carnegie Hall's labor dispute with its stagehands led to the cancellation of its opening-night gala.

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Music Reviews
1:58 pm
Fri October 4, 2013

This Opera Will Eat Your Heart Out

Barbara Hannigan and Bejun Mehta in the Festival at Aix production of Written on Skin.
Pascal Victor ArtComArt

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 11:05 am

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Deceptive Cadence
12:39 pm
Fri October 4, 2013

Verdi-Care In Effect

Pablo Helguera

Originally published on Mon October 7, 2013 3:22 pm

Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section, on Twitter @nprclassical, or on Facebook at NPR Classical.

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The Two-Way
11:12 am
Thu October 3, 2013

How Do You Get Paid $400,000 At Carnegie Hall? Be A Stagehand

In November 2004, the Grand Ole Opry came to Carnegie Hall.
Paul Hawthorne Getty Images

Originally published on Fri October 4, 2013 1:04 pm

(Update at 1 p.m. ET, Oct. 4: Click here for an important development — management and the stagehands have reached a deal.)

Our original post:

Carnegie Hall's opening night gala was canceled Wednesday because of a strike by stagehands.

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Shots - Health News
10:34 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Studying The Science Behind Child Prodigies

Cellist Matt Haimovitz made it big in the classical music scene as a little kid.
Stephanie Mackinnon

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 12:53 pm

Matt Haimovitz is 42 and a world-renowned cellist. He rushed into the classical music scene at age 10 after Itzhak Perlman, the famed violinist, heard him play.

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Deceptive Cadence
4:52 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

A Veteran Traces America's Biography In Music, From Coney Island To Vietnam

Ethel performs its Documerica program, featuring photos from Environmental Protection Agency archives, and music by composers including Vietnam veteran Kimo Williams, at the Park Avenue Armory in 2012.
James Ewing Brooklyn Academy of Music

Originally published on Tue October 8, 2013 5:29 pm

One summer night in 1969, Kimo Williams went to a rock concert in Hawaii, which led to one of the two most important decisions of his life.

"I started out on guitar. I wanted to be Jimi Hendrix," Williams says.

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Classics in Concert
11:32 am
Wed October 2, 2013

Gustavo Dudamel And The LA Philharmonic Celebrate 10 Years In Disney Hall

Gustavo Dudamel and the Los Angeles Philharmonic celebrate the 10th anniversary of Walt Disney Concert Hall in a special gala concert.
Vern Evans

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 9:50 am

Not unlike childbirth, the odyssey of fits and starts that preceded the completion of Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles hurt like hell at the time. But today, 10 years later, Angelenos marvel on a daily basis at architect Frank Gehry's dazzling offspring: the incandescent beauty of its billowing metallic sails, especially at dusk, in L.A.'s famed purple-pink fading light; its iconic status as an architectural symbol of the city and its warm and vibrant acoustics.

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Deceptive Cadence
4:45 pm
Tue October 1, 2013

Chronicle Of A Death Foretold: New York City Opera Shuts Its Doors

The New York City Opera let its final curtain fall Saturday night at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in a production of Anna Nicole by Mark-Anthony Turnage.
Stephanie Berger

Originally published on Wed October 2, 2013 6:16 pm

This morning the New York City Opera announced that it was declaring bankruptcy and ceasing operations. Dubbed "The People's Opera" by Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia when it was founded 70 years ago, the company was meant as an alternative to the richer Metropolitan Opera. It's the place where exciting young singers like Beverly Sills and Placido Domingo made their New York debuts and where innovative productions of new operas premiered.

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Deceptive Cadence
3:51 pm
Tue October 1, 2013

Minnesota Orchestra Conductor Resigns After Carnegie Hall Cancellations

Conductor Osmo Vanska, who resigned his post at the Minnesota Orchestra this morning.
Todd Buchanan Courtesy of the Minnesota Orchestra

Originally published on Sun October 6, 2013 11:14 am

The latest chapter in the saga of the Minnesota Orchestra closed at a perilous point Tuesday morning, with its widely beloved conductor, Osmo Vänskä, announcing his resignation.

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Music Interviews
2:03 am
Tue October 1, 2013

Don't Call This 12-Year-Old Concert Pianist A Prodigy

Emily Bear is a classical and jazz pianist. At 12, she is what many call a prodigy.
Nick Suttle Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue October 1, 2013 6:35 am

Musician Emily Bear has composed more than 350 pieces for the piano. She's recorded six albums, performed at the White House and Carnegie Hall, and worked closely with her mentor, music legend Quincy Jones. And get this: She's 12.

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Deceptive Cadence
11:55 am
Fri September 27, 2013

New At K.486 Mart

Pablo Helguera for NPR

Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section, on Twitter @nprclassical, or on Facebook at NPR Classical.

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Concerts
11:15 am
Fri September 27, 2013

CANCELLED: Carnegie Hall Live: Opening Night Gala With The Philadelphia Orchestra

Joshua Bell is the violin soloist at the glittering opening night of Carnegie Hall's 2013-14 season.
courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 12:04 pm

Due to a strike by Carnegie Hall's stagehands, represented by IATSE/Local One (International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees), tonight's performance has been cancelled.



PROGRAM:

  • Tchaikovsky: Slavonic March, Op. 31
  • Saint-Saëns: Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso, Op. 28
  • Ravel: Tzigane
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Shots - Health News
1:28 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Say What? French Horn Players Run Risk Of Hearing Loss

Stand back, or wear earplugs.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 2:52 pm

Loud music can lead to hearing loss. But it's not just rock musicians and their fans who are at risk.

In classical orchestras, horn players are particularly vulnerable to hearing damage from the tunes they and their colleagues play.

Some studies have found that horn players are blasted with some of the loudest sounds in the orchestra. The levels are so high that many countries' occupational health regulations would limit exposure like that to a half-hour a day, some studies have found.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:22 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

The Pianist Who Plays 'The Rascal And The Sparrow'

Antonio Pompa-Baldi's new album is a tribute to Francis Poulenc and Edith Piaf.
Steinway & Sons

How do you make a piano sing? Italian-born pianist Antonio Pompa-Baldi tackles the question on his new album, The Rascal and the Sparrow, a tribute to Francis Poulenc and Edith Piaf, two titans of French song who each died 50 years ago. Pompa-Baldi shared his thoughts on the project in this email chat with NPR Music's Tom Huizenga.

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The Record
12:02 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Vijay Iyer, Jeremy Denk Win MacArthur Genius Grants

Vijay Iyer and Jeremy Denk are 2013 MacArthur fellows.
Courtesy of the artist

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Deceptive Cadence
5:31 am
Sat September 21, 2013

Leonard Bernstein's Unconventional 'Anxiety'

Leonard Bernstein's Age of Anxiety symphony is as unconventional as its creator.
Courtesy of Library of Congress

Originally published on Fri November 22, 2013 5:30 pm

Like Leonard Bernstein himself, there is absolutely nothing predictable about the music he wrote. None of the three amazing works Bernstein labeled as "symphonies" in any way resemble a conventional orchestral symphony.

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Deceptive Cadence
11:52 am
Fri September 20, 2013

And 'Fiddler On The Roof' — Not Jewish

Pablo Helguera for NPR

This week's artune is ripped from the headlines. More controversy for Russia and its official position on homosexuality: A new government-funded film — and its government funders — deny that Tchaikovsky was gay.

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A Blog Supreme
7:46 am
Fri September 20, 2013

Opera Star Jessye Norman Picks Her Favorite Jazz Singers

In a conversation aired on WBGO, Jessye Norman credits the study of jazz with her understanding of song interpretation.
Carol Friedman Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 11:06 am

Jessye Norman's commanding soprano voice makes her the quintessential operatic diva for many listeners. But she frequently draws inspirations from jazz: She ranks singers like Billie Holiday, Mabel Mercer and Sarah Vaughan high on her list of influences.

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Arts
9:14 am
Thu September 19, 2013

John Wesley Wright

Tenor John Wesley Wright

It’s September, back to school, time for “What I did on summer vacation.”  Kara Dahl Russell interviews tenor and S.U.

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Deceptive Cadence
4:32 pm
Wed September 18, 2013

First Watch: Kronos Quartet Plays Music By The National's Bryce Dessner

Andrew Paynter Courtesy of the artists

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 12:02 pm

When you hear the name of guitarist and composer Bryce Dessner, you wouldn't be wrong to think immediately of hugely acclaimed indie-rock outfit The National. But he's also a stalwart of the new music scene.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:03 pm
Fri September 13, 2013

Mstislav Reaperpovich

Pablo Helguera for NPR

Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section, on Twitter @nprclassical, or on Facebook at NPR Classical.

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Deceptive Cadence
1:25 pm
Wed September 11, 2013

Soundscapes In C, In Winter And In Alaska

An incredible roster of musicians gathered at Carnegie Hall in 2009 to play Terry Riley's epic 'In C' — with the complete, but only single-page, score projected overhead.
Julien Jourdes courtesy of Carnegie Hall Archive

Originally published on Wed September 11, 2013 1:58 pm

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Deceptive Cadence
5:18 pm
Tue September 10, 2013

New York City's 'People's Opera' May Face Its Final Curtain

Pamela Armstrong (left) as Alice Ford and Heather Johnson as Meg Page in New York City Opera's production of Falstaff. The so called people's opera may have to cancel its upcoming season if fundraising falls short.
Carol Rosegg New York City Opera

Originally published on Tue September 10, 2013 10:15 pm

There are a lot of operas that end with heroines on their deathbeds, singing one glorious aria before they die. That's what happens at the end of Anna Nicole, the controversial new work that New York City Opera is presenting at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in September. But the company's artistic director and general manager, George Steel, says it could also be City Opera's last gasp.

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Deceptive Cadence
5:46 pm
Sun September 8, 2013

Banjos, Bartók And La Belle Époque: New Classical Albums

Caleb Burhans debut album as a composer is called Evensong.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon December 9, 2013 12:34 pm

People ask why I thrive on classical music, and I tell them it's all about discovery. The possibilities for finding incredible music, both old and new, are endless as the oceans.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:03 pm
Fri September 6, 2013

Music For The Bisontennial

Pablo Helguera for NPR

Originally published on Sat September 7, 2013 6:25 pm

Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section, on Twitter @nprclassical, or on Facebook at NPR Classical.

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