Sibelius: Eight pieces, op. 99

performed by Eero Heinonen, or below by someone who may or not be the same person (cover image by Dennis Buchner) It’s unlikely that when you hear Sibelius’ name, you think of anything he wrote for piano. Whether it’s any … Continue reading Sibelius: Eight pieces, op. 99

Concert Review: Taipei Symphony and Karen Gomyo

Bear with me here. This concert (or the general experience of the evening) was far more outstandingly outstanding than I’d prepared for.  There are some concerts you look forward to and know will be once-in-a-lifetime chances, like being able to hear Gurre Lieder live last year (quite a production), or The Philharmonia last month, and some you go to just because it’s a nice chance to hear a piece live again, with no real concern for the performer or real anticipation for the program…? Think of it this way.  There are different kinds of dinner plans: I may make plans far … Continue reading Concert Review: Taipei Symphony and Karen Gomyo

Concert Review: Salonen and the Philharmonia Orchestra in Taipei

Once in a while, there’s a thing that you look so forward to that you can’t even concentrate, the day seems to go by slowly, and you cannot wait for this thing you know will be so amazing to arrive. Perhaps it’s a dinner at a fancy restaurant, or a vacation, or some kind of meaningful thing; it’s different for everyone. But then when you get there and it starts happening, it’s more meaningful and powerful and enjoyable and moving than you had thought it could be. Even the highest of expectations were exceeded. Perhaps that sounds corny, but it’s … Continue reading Concert Review: Salonen and the Philharmonia Orchestra in Taipei

The composer and conductor: which comes first?

This is not a piece I’m going to spend lots of time analyzing the history of in preparation for a dissertation on the subject. It was just a passing thought I had based on this week’s music piece for Thursday, and I thought I’d talk about it. It’ll make more sense when you know what that piece is, but for now, it’s at least worth talking about in the context of Mahler.While he seemed to have garnered some praise and recognition in his time for his works, most prominently the eighth symphony, he was known during his lifetime far more … Continue reading The composer and conductor: which comes first?

Concert Review: Evergreen Symphony- An evening of concertos

Welcome back to another Tuesday of concert reviews. After the abomination of horns that severely marred Mahler’s fourth, I was pleased to be sitting in front of the Evergreen Symphony Orchestra again. Heard their Mahler before. It was some Lexus-sponsored program or something. I really only bought the ticket because I saw Liszt’s E major concerto and Sibelius’ second symphony on the program. I was concerned the program had changed or I’d bought the wrong ticket when I saw a cellist featured on the program that Saturday night. I was sick, but wasn’t going to miss the concert. I was … Continue reading Concert Review: Evergreen Symphony- An evening of concertos

The favorite symphonies list

A musical scavenger hunt of sorts. “He’s making a list… he’s checking it…” oh, only about half a billion times.  I got this idea from this thread at Talk Classical which you may not be able to read without logging in.  This is essentially an exercise in musical sudoku. There is ZERO inherent quality that a first symphonies of multiple composers would have in common, save it being the first one they wrote. Prokofiev’s first as a kind of musical caricature is so different from the ambitious first symphonies of Brahms or Mahler or Rott (his only, as I know, thanks … Continue reading The favorite symphonies list