Music

Deceptive Cadence
1:29 pm
Wed October 9, 2013

Act Like You Know: Giuseppe Verdi

Don't be caught fishing for facts about Verdi on the bicentennial of his birth.
Getty Images/DeAgostini

Originally published on Tue November 19, 2013 10:52 am

It's that time of year again when freshly steamed curtains are rising on opera stages across the country, introducing another new season of performances. And this time, one composer will be popping up more than usual — Giuseppe Verdi.

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Deceptive Cadence
1:28 pm
Wed October 9, 2013

What Is Classical Music's Women Problem?

Australian conductor Simone Young, the outgoing artistic director of the Hamburg State Opera.
Klaus Lefebvre Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 9:36 am

Close your eyes, and you may think that this is 1913. In the past few days, the classical music community has been set aflame by recent comments from three prominent male conductors who are — steel yourself — actually saying that women are not capable of standing on the podium.

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Music Reviews
1:26 pm
Wed October 9, 2013

Ahmad Jamal Weaves Old And New On 'Saturday Morning'

Ahmad Jamal.
Courtesy of the artist

Jazz pianist Ahmad Jamal started playing when he was 3 years old in Pittsburgh, which means he's now been playing for 80 years. His new album, Saturday Morning, often recalls his elegant trios of yesteryear, with its tightly synchronized arrangements, plenty of open space and deceptively simple charm.

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A Blog Supreme
7:03 am
Wed October 9, 2013

A Saxophonist From Santiago Cracks The Stateside Scene

Melissa Aldana, 24, took after her father in pursuing jazz saxophone.
Jimmy Katz Courtesy of the artist

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Deceptive Cadence
5:00 pm
Tue October 8, 2013

Verdi's Gift: Wringing Catchy Music From Touchy Subjects

In his operas, Giuseppe Verdi had a knack for empowering marginalized people — like the title character of Aida, who is an enslaved Ethiopian princess (played in this 2011 French production by American soprano Indra Thomas).
Gerard Julien AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 8, 2013 6:24 pm

Two hundred years ago this week, Giuseppe Verdi was born in an Italian town midway between Bologna and Milan. On the occasion of his bicentennial, All Things Considered wanted to know what makes the great opera composer so enduring — why his work is still so frequently discussed and performed these two centuries later. The answer, says conductor and arranger John Mauceri, is that Verdi had a knack for making thorny topics accessible.

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Music
3:11 pm
Mon October 7, 2013

John Mackey and the Norman Philharmonic on Performance Oklahoma

Norman Philharmonic

Composer John Mackey, joined the Norman Philharmonic  for several days of rehearsals and educational programs involving the Norman Public Schools.  His residency culminated in a full length concert marking the start of the orchestra's third season and was presented on Sunday, September 15th at the Nancy O'Brian Center for the Performing Arts in Norman.  The program, the third in the ensemble's "Meet the Composer" series offered three works by Mackey:  Harvest: Concerto for Trombone featuri

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World Cafe
2:32 pm
Mon October 7, 2013

World Cafe Next: Jesse Woods

Jesse Woods.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue October 15, 2013 9:56 am

  • Hear Two Songs By Jesse Woods

Jesse Woods performs a unique style of echo-laden folk music. The singer moved to Austin, Texas, about four years ago — and says he was drawn to the area because of its "hint of strange."

Woods spent most of 2012 recording songs for his full-length debut, Get Your Burdens Lifted, in a studio he built himself. Hear a pair of tracks from the album and download this week's podcast.

Deceptive Cadence
7:03 am
Mon October 7, 2013

Guest DJ Angela Meade: Hitting The Big Time With Help From Verdi

Soprano Angela Meade made her professional debut in the role of Elvira in Verdi's Ernani at the Metropolitan Opera.
Marty Sohl Metropolitan Opera

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 12:23 pm

Most opera singers work their way to the big league by singing bit parts in regional opera houses. Not soprano Angela Meade. She landed on top instantly with her professional debut in the lead soprano role of Giuseppe Verdi's Ernani at New York's Metropolitan Opera in 2008.

It was a dream come true. The star soprano took ill and the understudy, Meade, was suddenly shoved into the spotlight. The press said she sang "like an old pro from start to finish."

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Music Interviews
11:03 am
Sun October 6, 2013

Returning To Music, Tested By Loss

Cellist and composer Erik Friedlander's new album is titled Claws & Wings.
Angelo Merendino Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun October 6, 2013 4:06 pm

Cellist and composer Erik Friedlander lost his wife of many years, dancer and choreographer Lynn Shapiro, to breast cancer in 2011. She'd been diagnosed a decade earlier, and Friedlander says music became a place of vital release for him as her condition worsened.

"During the difficult years, I did take refuge in working," he says. "It was a place where I could make the rules; where I could control what I could control."

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Deceptive Cadence
4:33 pm
Sat October 5, 2013

How Verdi Improved On Shakespeare

Johan Botha as the title character and Renée Fleming as Desdemona in the Metropolitan Opera's fall 2012 run of Verdi's Otello.
Ken Howard Metropolitan Opera

Originally published on Wed October 9, 2013 2:22 pm

This past week may have been a rough one for the classical world, but there is something to look forward to.

This coming week, we celebrate the 200th birthday of Giuseppe Verdi, composer of the best opera of all time. (That's right, Wagner fans. Start writing those letters.)

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