Inspiration from the Ground Up: Kanaris and Wise Perform Beethoven and Schubert at Beethoven-Haus Bonn

There could not have been a more fitting location for the Friday, March 3rd release concert of “Songs of Yearning: Sehnsuchtslieder” (Hänssler Classic) than the sleek, wood-paneled Hermann J. Abs Chamber Music Hall of the Beethoven-Haus Bonn - and the reason was not merely the setting’s pleasing balance between formality and intimacy. Underneath the feet…

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The Lads from LA: Calder Quartet at Wigmore Hall

When the four gentlemen of the Calder Quartet strode onto the Wigmore Hall stage Saturday October 1st, my first thought was “These are the Beatles of the classical music world.” The members’ trim black suits, long skinny ties and wide grins radiated an eager, boyish energy. Many musicians’ somber faces during pre-performance bows would better…

A Golden Performance: Yaniv d’Or, Ensemble NAYA, and Barrocade

As instrumentalists from the Ensemble NAYA and Barrocade took their places onstage on Sunday June 26th at Wigmore Hall, the period instruments from voila de gamba to theorbo to hammered dulcimer indicated a concert of acoustic veracity. But when Yaniv d'Or joined them onstage, you knew immediately that this was not going to be your traditional Baroque performance. Tall…

The Role of Present Musical Strangeness in Past and Future

In his Guardian op-ed examining Zender's version of Schubert's monumental song cycle Winterreise, tenor and scholar Ian Bostridge makes an important point about the role of a re-worked piece of the classical music canon: it "allows us to experience it as strange, a strangeness Schubert’s contemporaries felt and which we may have lost." When we perceive classical…

Encore for Opera in Cinemas!

Opera, according to some, is said to be on its deathbed. Like Mimì in La Bohème, the art form is suffering a slow decline, and though it attempts to avoid its inevitable fate, the end is written, certain as a closing chord. There will be a final pressing of hands, a last sigh, and then just once more,…