Music Appreciation

Music History Monday: An Earth-Shaking Performance!

April 17, 2017

After performing in Baltimore, Washington D.C., Pittsburgh, Chicago, St. Louis and Kansas City, the company crossed the Great Divide and arrived in San Francisco, there to perform Georges Bizet’s Carmen on the evening of April 17, 1907: 110 years ago today. […]

Portrait of composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Music Appreciation

Music History Monday: One Talented Kid

April 10, 2017

On April 11, 1770 – 247 years ago tomorrow – a choral performance took place in Rome that was the source of one of the most famous stories in the entire history of Western music. Here’s the story. […]

Photograph of Elmer Bernstein conducting the U.S. Air Force Band
Music Appreciation

Music History Monday: The “Other” Bernstein

April 3, 2017

Elmer WHO? Oh, you might not know his name, but you almost certainly know at least some his music. Between 1951 and 2002, he composed the music for over 200 films and for hundreds more TV shows. […]

Photograph of the Oslo Philharmonic conducted by Vasily Petrenko
Music Appreciation

Music History Monday: Why Art Matters

March 20, 2017

I’ve reached the most satisfying conclusion that our art is more important, more lasting, more real and substantial and certainly more inspirational than our politics. […]

Photograph of German composer Richard Wagner taken in 1861.
Music Appreciation

Music History Monday: A Very Tough Crowd

March 13, 2017

The Paris production of Tannhäuser remains one of the greatest operatic flops of all time: a scheduled ten-performance run that was reduced to three disastrous performances before the opera was withdrawn. […]

Portrait of Italian opera composer Giuseppe Fortunino Francesco Verdi by Giovanni Boldini
Music Appreciation

Music History Monday: A Magnificent Fiasco!

March 6, 2017

“I have to tell you that there was never a success in Venice like that of La Traviata. There was an uproar of indescribable applause, and even [the producer] Antonio Gallo had to take a curtain call from his place in the audience – a novelty, but that is what really happened.” […]

Photograph of American pianist Van Cliburn in 1966.
Music Appreciation

Music History Monday: A Cold War Miracle

February 27, 2017

Van Cliburn was proclaimed a conquering hero by both the Americans and the Soviets, and his victory did much to soften hearts and open minds across the East-West divide. […]

Engraving from a portrait of German violinist Johann Peter Salomon
Music Appreciation

Music History Monday: Movers and Shakers

February 20, 2017

Unbidden and unannounced, he showed up at Haydn’s house, knocked on the door, and introduced himself with these words: “I am Salomon of London and have come to fetch you. Tomorrow we will arrange an accord.” […]

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