Friday, July 31, 2009
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Beiser makes her Celebrity Series debut with a performance of "World to Come" on April 23 at The Paramount Theatre.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
George Russell, the influential jazz composer, architect of the Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization, MacArthur Fellow and longtime New England Conservatory faculty member, has died at age 86.
The coverage of Mr. Russell's death has been extensive, of course, below is only a sampling:
Los Angeles Times
The Washington Post
National Public Radio
Do The Math blog (The Bad Plus)
"The Future of Jazz" television show from 1958, featuring George Russell, Bill Evans, Tony Scott, Art Farmer, Jimmy Cleveland, Doc Severinsen, Ed Thigpen, Mundell Lowe, and Eddie Safranski (video)
George Russell chatting with Ornette Coleman
New England Conservatory
George Russell official web site
My practice has been to include, in the interest of brevity, only obituaries of artist with whom the Celebrity Series has had a presenting relationship. Though the Celebrity Series of Boston never presented Mr. Russell or his ensembles, undoubtedly a number of Celebrity Series artists have been influenced by his work.
The 1970s, it turns out, are almost always good for a chuckle. Here is a fun post from the AllMusic Blog entitled "The Semiotics of Classical LP Cover Art (ca. 1970), or, When Things Started to Get Fun." Fair warning, the post includes near nudity and full frontal kitsch.
A nod to The Well Tempered Blog for the road map.
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Michael Steinberg, 1928-2009
Former Boston Globe classical music critic and musicologist Michael Steinberg died this weekend in Minnesota. He was 80 years old.
Mr. Steinberg was classical music critic for The Boston Globe from 1966 to 1976 and, as such, reviewed innumerable Celebrity Series performances.
San Francisco Chronicle
Los Angeles Times Culture Monster blog
The Baltimore Sun
National Public Radio
Minnesota Public Radio
Dancer and choreographer Merce Cunningham, one of the 20th century's great innovators, died on Sunday (July 26, 2009) at 90 years of age. Written appreciations from around the world are pouring onto the internet honoring this legendary figure, many featuring video or photo galleries, below is a sampling.The New York Times: ArtsBeat blog, Alastair Macaulay
The Washington Post: Sarah Kaufman
Los Angeles Times: Culture Monster blog
San Jose Mercury News
The Christian Science Monitor
The Times (UK)
The Sydney Morning Herald
"Alma Guillermoprieto: Merce Cunningham" in The New Yorker
The Baltimore Sun
Charlotte Higgins on Culture (Guardian UK blog)
The Wall Street Journal: Speakeasy blog
National Public Radio: the two-way news blog
Village Voice: Deborah Jowitt
The Centralia Chronicle (Cunningham's home town paper)
The Celebrity Series has presented the Merce Cunningham Dance Company
on two occasions: in 1970, two lecture/demonstrations featuring
Cunningham and Company with, among others, the composer John Cage in
the pit; and again in 1988 for three distinct programs at John Hancock Hall.
Friday, July 24, 2009
Some remarkable spontaneous music making.
Two of these wonderful musicians will be coming to Boston and the Celebrity Series in 09-10: percussionist Cyro Baptista comes January 22 as a member of the Luciana Souza Trio (Sanders Theatre) and Bobby McFerrin for a solo performance at Symphony Hall on March 21.
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Danish Dance Theater is making its Boston debut April 27-28 at The Paramount Theatre. This video excerpt is of Tim Rushton's Kridt, which will be on both programs.
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Barry Schwartz on wisdom and morality at TED.
Michael Kaiser, President of the Kennedy Center in our nation's capital, and known as "the Turnaround King" for his work bringing beleaguered arts organizations back to health, explains why arts groups don't pay for themselves and need contributed funding support in this post from his Huffington Post blog.
Friday, July 17, 2009
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Stephen Sondheim teaching "Send in the Clowns" at Guildhall School of Music, London. I don't know when...
The Celebrity Series of Boston presents Stephen Sondheim in a rare public interview by New York Times columnist Frank Rich, Saturday, November 14 at Sanders Theatre.
Saturday, July 11, 2009
Never a dull moment with Yoko ...
- It is not possible to control a mind-time with a stopwatch or a metronome.
- Painting To Hammer A Message!
- The only sound that exists to me is the sound of the mind. My works are only to induce music of the mind in people.
- My work is only like an elephant's tail.
- Mental richness should be worried just as much as physical richness.
- The body is the Bodhi Tree. The mind like a bright mirror standing. Take care to wipe it all the time. And allow no dust to cling. Shen-hsiu
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Thanks to ArtsJournal for posting.
Monday, July 6, 2009
Jeff Heinrich's review for the Montreal Gazette of the Maria Schneider Orchestra at the Montreal International Jazz Orchestra has touched off a firestorm of protest from readers. Here is the single-paragraph review which is followed by more than 60 (at the time of this post) comments decrying Heinrich's review.
Doug Ramsey's comments on the piece on his Rifftides blog, which is my original source for this post, can be found here.
I have not yet found an alternate review in English (if you find one, drop me a line), but promise to post one if I can find it.
The Celebrity Series presented Ms. Schneider and Orchestra, with pride, at Berklee Performance Center in November 2007.
Thursday, July 2, 2009
In honor of Independence Day, at least in a big picture sort of way, composer and commentator Rob Kapilow takes on composer Aaron Copland's iconic work, Appalachian Spring.
Here is a bit of Kapilow's take:
"'Copland's Appalachian Spring has a million things in it,' Kapilow says, 'but at its heart is one chord, which is not only the essence of Appalachian Spring but in my mind Copland's entire vision of America.'"
Here is the National Public Radio landing page.
And as long as we're on the subject of national holidays, patriotism and the like, here is Kapilow's take on the greatness of the song, America the Beautiful.
Rob Kapilow will cover Mendelssohn's Octet in E-flat Major and The Music of Cole Porter during the 2009-2010 season. Appalachian Spring was presented by the Celebrity Series as the subject of a What Makes It Great? program in 2000.
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
It's only a 2-minute excerpt, but cellist Maya Beiser's multi-media performance, "World to Come," doesn't need much time to make an impression. You could call it a solo cello performance, because in one sense it is, but there is quite a bit more going on here visually.