Weekly Magazine

THE WEEK AHEAD

LIVE FROM THE LOT presents First Night Monterey’s Hallowe’en Celebration in two shows at Sunset Center.SANTA CRUZ BAROQUE hosts multi-instrumentalist Shelley Phillips in music by 18th century blind Irish harper Turlough O’Carolan. INTERVIEW WITH JOHN WINEGLASS, Emmy-winning composer, November 4, sponsored by Youth Music Monterey. MUSIC: MEDICINE FOR THE HEART an online event by the Stanford Calypso, Raagapella, Talisman, and the Stanford Chamber Chorale. FOR DETAILS AND LINKS, CLICK HERE

KEITH JARRETT’S CAREER LIKELY OVER

ACCLAIMED JAZZ & CLASSICAL pianist partially paralyzed after two strokes in 2018. He premiered Lou Harrison’s Piano Concerto at the Cabrillo Festival. Click HERE

ARLO GUTHRIE RETIRES FROM PERFORMING

SONGWRITER SON OF LEGENDARY WOODY GUTHRIE cites strokes and other ailments. Click HERE

MARGE CHAMPION DIES AT 101

MGM STAR DANCER, actor and choreographer. Click HERE

AMERICAN PIE

DON McLEAN’S bardic masterpiece spawns a new movie, musical and children’s book. For all the song’s coded references explained, Click HERE

LETTERS

I ENJOY YOUR newsletter, even though there’s not much going on in the community, but especially today I liked the article on the accordion. I play a two-row button accordion, much to the dismay of some people including my cat! ~ Sandy Ferguson, Santa Cruz

WATCH BERNSTEIN CONDUCT WITH EYES ONLY

THE VIENNA PHIL plays the finale of Haydn’s Symphony No 88

 

STANISLAVSKI’S “METHOD”

HOW GREAT ACTORS make their performances so compelling. As told by William Justice Bruehl, Professor Emeritus of Theater Arts at Stony Brook University in New York. Click HERE

THE HYPERTRAGIC NOTCH

DECADES AGO at a Carmel Bach Festival solo violin recital the young man sitting next to me struck up a conversation. When he told me he had come from Fresno I asked him if it was to escape the summer heat there. “No,” he said, “I wanted to hear how a fugue can be played on a solo violin.” Good answer, I thought. The fugue in question is the second movement from JS Bach’s Sonata in A minor, the very work that opens this new Delos recital by the extraordinary Greek guitarist Smaro Gregoriadou. She uses Bach’s own transcription for harpsichord of the sonata, to D minor, and plays it on a “high-tuned pedal guitar in scalloped frets of the Kertsopoulos Aesthetics.*” For the rest of her program, titled “A Healing Fire,” she uses a classical pedal guitar of the same aesthetics, a technical platform that expands the timbral colorations available to the performer. In her opening remarks, Gregoriadou writes, “The compositions in this collection offer encouragement and hope against today’s dystopia and chaos; they explore spirituality, self-knowledge and transcendence, illuminating dark and ambiguous regions of the human psyche with a different kind of light, a different sort of fire. They are conduits for catharsis, an escape from conflicts, antinomy and traumas this world torments us with. From Bach’s ecstatic Credo to Gubaidulina’s submersion into the most transparent awareness prayer can bring; and from Hétu’s suspended scream to Britten’s self-absorbing surrender to Sleep and Nothingness, these towering masterpieces are, above all, essays on the mystical, reflections of the sacred!” Britten wrote his circumspect Nocturnal after John Dowland for the late Julian Bream; its eight variations, ending in a large passacaglia are based on “Come, heavy Sleep, the image of true Death, and close up these my weary weeping eyes” from Dowland’s First Book of Songs (1597), cast as a journey through the night, often meditative and tranquil, sometimes restless or agitated. Sofia Gubaidulina, a Shostakovich protégée who turned 89 on Saturday, is a woefully underrepresented yet hugely prolific Tatarstani composer of deep spiritual affect and a cheeky sense of humor, witness her The Unasked Answer for three orchestras, an obvious play on Ives’ The Unanswered Question. Her Serenade for guitar, at just three minutes, doesn’t really rectify her status in the West. Jacques Hétu’s five-movement Suite for guitar of 1986 makes plain his French aesthetic. Why Gregoriadou calls it a ‘suspended scream’ I cannot explain; Hétu (1938-2010) is a self-described melodist with a keen grasp of musical form, harmonic relationships and the guitar itself. Sure there are rigorous challenges for both the guitarist and the listener but ultimately a satisfying adventure. SM    *Click HERE

BALCONY SESSION

MONTEREY SYMPHONY cellist Saul Richmond-Rakerd plays a major solo recital in Carmel.

 

COMPOSER OR PASTA?

YOU CHOOSE. Click HERE

MOHAMMAD REZA SHAJARIAN (1940-2020)

SUPERSTAR Persian classical singer/musician, beloved by millions worldwide. Click HERE

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Scott MacClelland, editor; Rebecca CR Brooks, associate editor