Arts

Deceptive Cadence
11:59 am
Fri August 2, 2013

Heifetz Up With Piatigorsky On Third

Pablo Helguera for NPR

Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.

Pablo Helguera is a New York-based artist working with sculpture, drawing, photography and performance. His new book is Helguera's Artunes. You can see more of his work at Artworld Salon and on his own site.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:53 pm
Thu August 1, 2013

5 American Symphonies You Should Know

Robert Spano, music director of the Aspen Music Festival and School, conducts the Aspen Chamber Symphony. He is a fan of the Third Symphony by Aaron Copland.
Alex Irvin

Originally published on Thu August 1, 2013 5:01 pm

It's not quite the quest for the Holy Grail, but we're in pursuit this summer of the "Great American Symphony." And in many respects, our journey is just as important as our destination.

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Deceptive Cadence
1:00 pm
Tue July 30, 2013

Creating American Symphonies To Tell 'Distinctly American' Stories

New York-based composer Mohammed Fairouz.
Samantha West Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun August 4, 2013 8:48 am

To say that you're writing a symphony today is a statement, especially for a young composer like me. The challenge is to find just the right way to commandeer the age-old form, to render it fresh and vital once again within an American context.

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Tiny Desk Concerts
8:55 am
Sat July 27, 2013

Time For Three: Tiny Desk Concert

Time For Three performs a Tiny Desk Concert.
NPR

Originally published on Mon December 23, 2013 6:20 pm

Pigeonholing the classically trained string trio Time for Three isn't easy, but that's also a blessing. The musicians — violinists Zachary De Pue and Nick Kendall with double bassist Ranaan Meyer — say they love a kaleidoscopic spectrum of music. "If we like it, we play it" is their motto.

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Deceptive Cadence
11:55 am
Fri July 26, 2013

New Traffic Signs Near Tanglewood

Pablo Helguera

Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.

Pablo Helguera is a New York-based artist working with sculpture, drawing, photography and performance. His new book is Helguera's Artunes. You can see more of his work at Artworld Salon and on his own site.

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Concerts
3:22 pm
Thu July 25, 2013

Kronos Quartet: Behind The Scenes And Out Of Doors

Fela Kuti's "Sorrow, Tears and Blood" performed by the Kronos Quartet and the vibrant Abena Koomson and Sahr Ngaujah.
Kevin Yatarola courtesy of Lincoln Center

Originally published on Tue July 8, 2014 10:38 am

PROGRAM:

Kronos Quartet & Superhuman Happiness: Suite from How to Survive a Plague (world premiere)

Kronos Quartet, Abena Koomson & Sahr Ngaujah: Fela Kuti, "Sorrow, Tears and Blood"

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Deceptive Cadence
2:03 am
Thu July 25, 2013

The High, Heavenly Voice Of David Daniels

Countertenor David Daniels (right) and dancer Reed Luplau in the Santa Fe Opera's world-premiere production of Oscar, based on the life of Oscar Wilde.
Ken Howard Santa Fe Opera

Originally published on Sat August 3, 2013 9:19 am

"You very quickly forget whether it's a male voice or a female voice. ... Because he's such a terrific musician, and so expressive, the fact that it's a man singing in a woman's range becomes irrelevant, and what we hear is the music."

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Deceptive Cadence
10:39 am
Wed July 24, 2013

Symphonic Music, American Style: 3 Must-Hear Albums

BMOP Sound

Originally published on Wed July 24, 2013 12:01 pm

Throughout the summer we're searching for the "Great American Symphony." It's not exactly a popularity contest. Instead, we're pondering American symphonic music from both the past and the present. Some composers like the young Kevin Puts and the veteran Martin Boykan, are labeling their pieces as symphonies. Others, like Michael Daugherty, can prefer more playful titles.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:44 pm
Mon July 22, 2013

Licia Albanese: An Opera Diva Hits 100

Soprano Licia Albanese sang the title role in Puccini's Madama Butterfly 72 times at the Metropolitan Opera.
The Metropolitan Opera Archives

Originally published on Mon July 22, 2013 1:27 pm

It's not every day a great opera diva makes it to the century mark. So let's take a moment to cheer for Licia Albanese, the beloved Metropolitan Opera star, who celebrates her 100th today and who most likely would not care to be called a "diva."

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Deceptive Cadence
5:02 am
Sat July 20, 2013

A Veteran's Piercing True Story Leaps From Page To Stage

The Long Walk, Brian Castner's memoir of PTSD and a difficult homecoming, will soon be an opera.
YouTube

Originally published on Tue July 23, 2013 6:26 pm

Iraq veteran Brian Castner wrote a book about his struggle with post-traumatic stress disorder for his kids, so they could someday know what he'd been going through when he came home from war.

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Deceptive Cadence
11:55 am
Fri July 19, 2013

Music For His Adoring Fins

Cartoon by Pablo Helguera.
Pablo Helguera

Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.

Pablo Helguera is a New York-based artist working with sculpture, drawing, photography and performance. His new book is Helguera's Artunes. You can see more of his work at Artworld Salon and on his own site.

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Parallels
3:15 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Opera Singer Becomes (Soprano) Voice Of Protest In Portugal

Pinto leads protesters in song during anti-austerity demonstrations. "I'm just a normal citizen," she says. "I just have this strong instinct of protecting what I love, and I do deeply love my country."
Courtesy of Ana Maria Pinto

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 7:45 am

For embattled Portuguese President Anibal Cavaco Silva, Oct. 5 started bad, and then got even worse.

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Deceptive Cadence
2:49 pm
Wed July 17, 2013

Carnegie Hall's Barnstorming Youth Movement

Cellist Angelique Montes, resident advisor Melissa Willams and clarinetist Tom Jeon arrive at Purchase College, State University of New York to begin their NYO-USA adventure.
Chris Lee courtesy of Carnegie Hall

This is the kind of opportunity most classical musicians can only dream about: to be invited to spend part of the summer with an orchestra touring the world — Washington, Moscow, St. Petersburg and London — with two of the biggest names in classical music, conductor Valery Gergiev and violinist Joshua Bell.

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Deceptive Cadence
10:54 am
Mon July 15, 2013

Tracing The Spirit Of The Early American Symphony

Amy Beach, with her 1896 "Gaelic" Symphony, was among America's early symphonic composers.
Library of Congress

Originally published on Tue August 20, 2013 12:21 pm

Leonard Bernstein, in a New York Philharmonic Young People's Concert, once summarized the late 19th century as the "kindergarten period" of American music and proceeded to make fun of George Whitefield Chadwick, Boston's leading composer from that period. But in citing Chadwick's Melpomene Overture, Bernstein stacked the deck.

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Deceptive Cadence
7:16 am
Sat July 13, 2013

From Carnegie Hall, A Youth Orchestra That's A National First

Conductor Valery Gergiev leads the National Youth Orchestra through its first rehearsal with the maestro, at Purchase College outside New York City.
Chris Lee

Originally published on Sat July 13, 2013 1:22 pm

It's a hot summer afternoon and the recital hall at Purchase College is abuzz with excitement and nervous energy. One hundred and twenty teenagers, from 42 states, are about to embark on an extraordinary musical and personal journey.

Clive Gillinson, executive director of Carnegie Hall, steps up to the podium to greet them. "Welcome to all of you," he says. "It's wonderful to welcome you here to the first-ever National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America!"

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Deceptive Cadence
11:56 am
Fri July 12, 2013

In Rehearsal: Slo-Mo Ma And Emanuel Accelerated

Pablo Helguera

Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.

Pablo Helguera is a New York-based artist working with sculpture, drawing, photography and performance. His new book is Helguera's Artunes. You can see more of his work at Artworld Salon and on his own site.

Read more
Field Recordings
10:49 am
Fri July 12, 2013

Eli Keszler & So Percussion: Making The Manhattan Bridge Roar And Sing

Mito Habe-Evans/NPR

Originally published on Tue July 8, 2014 10:07 am

There is magic in pure sound. And few know that truth as well as the quartet called So Percussion and the installation artist and drummer Eli Keszler — artists who, before this spring, had never met. We thought that they might find kindred spirits in each other.

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Deceptive Cadence
8:03 am
Thu July 11, 2013

Schoenberg Doesn't Suck: Serialism Demystified

Vi Hart explains twelve-tone serialism on YouTube.
courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu July 11, 2013 9:44 pm

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Law
4:33 pm
Wed July 10, 2013

Scalia V. Ginsburg: Supreme Court Sparring, Put To Music

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu July 11, 2013 12:39 pm

On the day after the Supreme Court concluded its epic term in June, two of the supreme judicial antagonists, Justice Antonin Scalia and Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, met over a mutual love: opera.

When it comes to constitutional interpretation, the conservative Scalia and the liberal Ginsburg are leaders of the court's two opposing wings. To make matters yet more interesting, the two have been friends for decades, since long before Scalia was named to the court by President Reagan and Ginsburg by President Clinton.

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Deceptive Cadence
8:03 am
Wed July 10, 2013

Electric Guitars Amp Up New Classical Music

Some of the 200 guitarists who took part in Rhys Chatham's A Crimson Grail at Lincoln Center's Out of Doors Festival in August 2009.
YouTube

Originally published on Wed July 10, 2013 10:12 am

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Deceptive Cadence
1:00 pm
Mon July 8, 2013

Music Is The Mission, Not Money

The Benedict Music Tent in Aspen.
Alex Irvin courtesy of the Aspen Music Festival and School

Originally published on Mon July 8, 2013 3:45 pm

One of the great summertime classical gathering spots in America is the Aspen Music Festival and School.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:03 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

Behind The Music: Charles Ives

Pablo Helguera

Originally published on Fri July 26, 2013 10:49 am

In honor of our search for the great American symphony, here's an encore presentation of one of our favorite Artunes. Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.

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Deceptive Cadence
4:47 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

The Innovative Mosaic Of American Symphonies

Conductor JoAnn Falletta.
Cheryl Gorski courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed July 31, 2013 12:34 pm

  • Hear JoAnn Falletta's Discussion With Robert Siegel

Our country's culture is a vast conglomeration of more than 200 years of influences from all over the world. We have taken what began as an extraordinary European tradition and expanded that legacy on American soil. We have added our essential egalitarianism, our love of experimentation, our inclusiveness and our boldness to the very form of the symphony. Americans have not been bound by one definition of the symphony, and composers have applied that formal name to pieces of varying length, structure and content.

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Deceptive Cadence
8:03 am
Tue July 2, 2013

In Search Of The Great American Symphony

Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony have been consistent champions of American music of all shapes and sizes. Are there — or will there be — American symphonies that stand with those of Mozart and Beethoven, Mahler and Shostakovich?
Bill Swerbenski San Francisco Symphony

Originally published on Tue July 2, 2013 1:53 pm

Critics and fans love a good debate over the great American novel or great American movie. But what about the great American symphony?

Is there one? If not, why? If so, which symphonies are good candidates for the title? (Check out our Spotify list for some contenders.) And in the land of the melting pot, what does it mean for a symphony to be "American" in the first place?

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Deceptive Cadence
5:00 am
Sun June 30, 2013

Revved-up Vivaldi, Persian Bamboo And Soaring Spirituals: New Classical Albums

album cover for Corps Exquis

Originally published on Wed July 3, 2013 7:41 am

It's a brave new musical world. Between downloads, iPods, music sharing websites and the good old CD, we have more easy access to the songs and symphonies we love than ever before.

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Tiny Desk Concerts
5:20 am
Sat June 29, 2013

Maya Beiser: Tiny Desk Concert

Maya Beiser performs a Tiny Desk Concert on April 9, 2013.
Marie McGrory NPR

Originally published on Mon December 23, 2013 6:25 pm

Maya Beiser's Twitter handle — @CelloGoddess — says it all. She's a brilliant cellist with a stunning command of her instrument, and she's tightly tied to technology. Beiser takes the sound of her cello and runs it through loop pedals, effects and other electronics to make her instrument shimmer, drone and groove. Then there's her magnificent sense of melody.

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Deceptive Cadence
2:36 am
Sat June 29, 2013

Why Tchaikovsky's Bells And Cannons Sound Every July 4

The Boston Pops rehearses for its Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular on July 3, 2012, at the Charles River Esplanade.
Paul Marotta Getty Images

Originally published on Sat June 29, 2013 3:44 pm

The Fourth of July is just around the corner, and on the big day, Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture will be heard from coast to coast, complete with fireworks and cannons. But how did a Russian composition, depicting the rout of Napoleon's Army, end up as the unofficial soundtrack for our most quintessentially American holiday?

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Deceptive Cadence
11:58 am
Fri June 28, 2013

The Wunder Years: Sloppy Johann

Pablo Helguera

Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.

Pablo Helguera is a New York-based artist working with sculpture, drawing, photography and performance. His new book is Helguera's Artunes. You can see more of his work at Artworld Salon and on his own site.

Read more
Deceptive Cadence
10:44 am
Wed June 26, 2013

Hit The Road And Hear Some Music: Summer Classical Festivals 2013

At the Moab Festival in Utah, patrons can hike to a secret spot to hear concerts.
Richard Bowditch Moab Music Festival

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 8:55 am

Summer is heating up and so are dozens of classical music festivals all around the country. We couldn't possibly list them all, but here's a sampling of some of the best events, from open-air venues and seaside spots to historic concert halls. Been to a great summer festival we've missed? Feel free to pass along your own reviews in the comments section.

EAST

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Deceptive Cadence
1:59 pm
Mon June 24, 2013

Meet The 2013 BBC Cardiff Singer Of The World

Mezzo soprano Jamie Barton, who won the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition Sunday night.
courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed June 26, 2013 10:45 am

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