Choreographer Amy Seiwert directs Smuin Ballet’s Class for a Cause
NEW THIS WEEK
GABE YOUNG offers an online oboe masterclass to musicians of Youth Music Monterey on Wednesday. SMUIN CONTEMPORARY BALLET will conduct a Zoom interactive Class for a Cause: Democracy in Motion in celebration of the 19th Amendment on Friday. SUNSET CENTER’S Live from the Lot hosts Yvette Gonzalez-Nacer in three concerts at the weekend. ENSEMBLE MONTEREY’S online concert in the vineyard with vocal and instrumental musicians this Sunday afternoon. FOR DETAILS AND LINKS, CLICK HERE
BACH FEST SEEKS NEW CONDUCTOR
CARMEL BACH FESTIVAL has launched its search for its next Artistic Director and Principal Conductor. Applications will be accepted until November 30, 2020. A limited number of finalists will be selected by mid-2021 and invited to conduct at the 2022 Festival, after which a final decision will be made by the Festival’s Board of Directors. The formal engagement will begin immediately, and the first priority of the new Artistic Director and Principal Conductor will be to plan the 2023 Festival and present a longer-term artistic vision covering multiple future seasons.
FOUR ORCHESTRAS TO SHARE WINEGLASS COMMISSION
COMPOSER JOHN WINEGLASS has been co-commissioned by the Fresno Philharmonic, Monterey Symphony, Pacific Symphony and the San José Chamber Orchestra to compose a new work, Alone Together, in memory of George Floyd. Wineglass’s responsive piece for strings and percussion is planned to run eight minutes and 46 seconds, the length of time Floyd survived while a Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck. A joint statement from Wineglass and Fresno Philharmonic conductor Rei Hotoda explains the impetus and intent of the new work: “Alone Together addresses the social issues we are all facing during this pandemic—from not being able to perform together to even the systemic racial disparities given a world stage due to shelter-in-place. Despite all the setbacks of our present limitations, we are moving forward. This work is allowing us to continue our work as performers—to never lose sight of just how important the arts are and have always been. By creating this work, we are providing a way to connect to one another which is so valuable and something most of us probably once took for granted. We may feel alone at this moment but we as four performing arts organizations are coming to move forward together as one.” As of today there are no firm plans for premiering the work. Each of the orchestras will announce its performance at a later date.
ZOOM TO REPLACE BOX OFFICES
HOW TO buy tickets to online performances. Click HERE
HOW TO MAKE A TRUMPET
IS SF’S NEW ARTS GRANT PROGRAM REALLY WORKABLE?
DO the math HERE
GRAMOPHONE CLASSICAL MUSIC AWARDS
THE 2020 awards presented from Glyndebourne, the entire two-hour celebration.
THE HYPERTRAGIC NOTCH
LISTENING TO the complete sonatas for violin and piano by Beethoven provides a hard look into the composer’s growth from 1797 to 1812. Moreover, hearing these works on instruments from Beethoven’s lifetime—several pianos, one violin and several bows—offers a fresh glimpse into what the composer would have heard before deafness overwhelmed him. The new four-disc set by violinist Jerilyn Jorgensen and pianist Cullan Bryant was recorded over two years—between the fall of 2016 and the fall of 2018—at the acoustically generous Ashburnham Community Church in Massachusetts. The program booklet offers extensive information about the instruments in use, with photos, to wit: a 1797 Andrea Carolus Leeb violin made in Vienna; four bows from roughly the same period including some from the school of the legendary François Xavier Tourte; pianos by anonymous, Joseph Brodmann, Caspar Katholnig, Johann Nepomuk Tröndlin and Ignaz Bösendorfer, a student of Brodmann and the founder of the only piano maker of that time still in business today. I cannot hear the differences among the four bows—though I’ve never heard a professional violinist who uses so little vibrato—but the tone quality of the different pianos ranges from the sound of late fortepiano right up to that of a modern piano. (This was the era of the greatest technological change in the history of the instrument.) Like most piano concertos, seven of the violin sonatas are in three movements; the other three, including the popular fifth “Spring” deploy four movements. The early 1797 set of three sonatas run on average 20 minutes. The fifth, sixth and seventh average 25 minutes. The monumental ninth, “Kreutzer,” runs fully to 40 minutes; its massive opening Adagio-Presto and second movement variations alone account for 30 minutes between them. Surveying all ten sonatas was, for me, a rare treat. It could be for you too if you’ve got four hours of concentrated listening available. In that case, you might actually thank COVID-19 sheltering in place. SM
BERNARD HERRMANN’S WHITMAN
COMPOSER TO ORSON WELLES and Alfred Hitchcock collaborated with Norman Corwin for a radio play about the American poet, with audio excerpts. Click HERE
NEARLY 250 YEARS OF THE ACCORDION
FASCINATING HISTORY. Click HERE
PAUL McCARTNEY DEFENDS THE MELLOTRON
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Scott MacClelland, editor; Rebecca CR Brooks, associate editor