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Around the U.S.

Ukrainian Orchestra Spreads Cultural Spirit In Extensive U.S. Tour

AVON PARK, Fla. – Ever mindful of the horror back home, the Lviv National Philharmonic Orchestra, led by Ukrainian American conductor Theodore Kuchar, hopes to "show the U.S. public our music, our culture, and the greatness of Ukraine."

Oberlin Fetes Historic Black Grad, Reviving Oratorio At Carnegie

NEW YORK – A concert at Carnegie Hall by the Oberlin Conservatory orchestra and chorus peaked with the oratorio The Ordering of Moses by R. Nathaniel Dett, who in 1908 became the college's first Black bachelor of music recipient.

The Delicacy Of Suicide As Lyric Reflection In Lang’s ‘note to a friend’

NEW YORK – Based on the writings of Japanese author Ryūnosuke Akutagawa, David Lang’s new opera score and libretto remain true to Akutagawa’s sentiment on being “duty bound to be honest” about the decision to take his own life.

Finnish Maestro Rouvali Fires Up The NY Phil — And Raises The Roof

NEW YORK – In two programs ranging from early Beethoven to Stravinsky and the modernist Anna Thorvaldsdottir, 37-year-old Santtu-Matias Rouvali displayed a keen sense of sonority as a mode of expression, and his listeners roared approval.

As String Quartet Vista Shifts, Young Ensemble Springs Up On Horizon

EVANSTON, Ill. – The string quartet world has seen significant turnover in recent years. Some noted foursomes are closing out their careers, but fresh faces are emerging such as the Isidore String Quartet, which played an auspicious concert here.

Prototype Fest Revives Bold Pre-Covid Spirit In Cluster Of New Operas

NEW YORK – After two seasons hamstrung by the global pandemic, the two-week festival, which has launched an impressive list of convention-defying new works, returned for a triumphant 10th-anniversary series of mostly live performances.

Inclusion And Handel’s Conqu’ring Hero Light NY Hanukkah Concert

NEW YORK – Curated by countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo, the free program heard by 2,000 at the city's largest synagogue offered excerpts from Handel's oratorio Judas Maccabaeus and modern pieces on themes of inclusion and hope.

‘Tristan’ Project Redux: Multimedia Immersion As A Concert Triptych

LOS ANGELES – It was Back To The Future as the Los Angeles Philharmonic offered a reprise of 2004's semi-staged, three-part multimedia production of Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde. The cycle directed by Peter Sellars repeats Dec. 15-17.

Violin Concerto Weaves Classic Strands: Fugue, Passacaglia, ‘Odyssey’

TAMPA – The Florida Orchestra and Jeffrey Multer, the concertmaster, gave the premiere of home-grown composer Michael Ippolito's imposing and impressive new work spun from, and sometimes reshaping, heroic narratives such as Homer's epic.

‘The Hours,’ New Opera Based On Woolf Novel, Maybe Just Needs Time

NEW YORK – Kevin Puts' opera, drawn from Virginia Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway and presented at the Met Opera, follows Clarissa Vaughan through one day of tribulations, sorrows and epiphanies. It gave a sense that too much was not enough.

Requiem From A Time Of Plague Has Familiar Ring In World Of Covid

LOS ANGELES – Heinrich Schütz’s 17th-century funeral work received a highly dramatized, and slowly drawn-out, treatment by director Peter Sellars in a performance by the Los Angeles Master Chorale led by Grant Gershon.

Descent Into Madness, With Cello Starring As Character From Gogol

CHICAGO – Lera Auerbach's new cello concerto, Diary of a Madman, received its U.S. premiere by soloist Gautier Capuçon with Manfred Honeck leading the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, a co-commissioner of the emotionally charged work.

Through Paired Prisms, 2 Choral Works Reflect On The American Dream

NEW YORK – Bundled together by the Oratorio Society of New York were the world premiere of Paul Moravec and Mark Campbell's A Nation of Others and the first New York performance of Robert Patterson's oratorio Whitman's America.

Reminder Of Brilliance: Berliners Bring Mahler To U.S. Concert Halls

CHICAGO – On a five-city tour stop here, the Berlin Philharmonic led by chief conductor Kirill Petrenko ended its six-year absence with a thrilling Mahler Seventh Symphony that affirmed the orchestra's place among the world's finest.

A ‘Buddha Passion’: Amid Sound And Fury, Tales Of Self-Sacrifice

SEATTLE – Composer Tan Dun conducted his complex six-part work with the Seattle Symphony augmented by amplified vocal soloists, a pipa player and choral forces. A related immersive experience tapped into the work's ancient roots.

An Electrified Concerto Zaps Violin Tradition With Cosmic Fantasy

SEATTLE – Enrico Chapela's Antiphaser, which received its world premiere by violinist Pekka Kuusisto and the Seattle Symphony under Andrew Litton, adds to the Mexican composer's catalog of works inspired by nature and astronomy.

At Perfecting Church, Perfect Flow Between Orchestra, Community

DETROIT – Concert norms went out the window, but energy surged in when the Detroit Symphony Orchestra visited a neighborhood church, embracing its choir, congregation, and kids with a program spanning William Tell and the Supremes.

Plunder, Deceit, Murder. Night Can Be Rough On Cornwall’s Rocky Coast

HOUSTON – Houston Grand Opera gave the U.S. premiere of British composer Ethel Smyth’s 1906 opera The Wreckers, the dark tale of a seaside community that survives by reaping the bounty of ships broken on its shores. Bit of killing required.

Thielemann Ends Long Hiatus From U.S. With Grand Bruckner Eighth

CHICAGO – The German conductor Christian Thielemann, celebrated and busily engaged n Europe, had not conducted in the U.S. for 20 years. He led the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in a soaring performance of Bruckner's vast work.

Cliburn Gold Medalist, Still Teenager, Soars Through Romantic Fare

EVANSTON, Ill. – On a worldwide victory lap after winning the Cliburn Competition, 18-year-old South Korean pianist Yunchan Lim was impressive in a program of Liszt, Mendelssohn, and Brahms, but two quiet encores revealed his true depth.
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