I’m always going to see classical concerts, so last night, I unexpected myself with a trip to see Elton John and Billy Joel at San Jose’s HP Pavilion. I’ve never thought of myself as a fan of Elton’s music, and I barely know who Billy Joel is, so I didn’t have high hopes. (more…)
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It is easy to make fun of ITV1’s new show, Popstar to Operastar. The budget is low, the standards are lower, the celebrity judges are almost as short on celebrity as they are on expertise, and the contestants are suitably ill-equipped for the challenge ahead of them.
I’m trying really hard not to take the bait for three reasons: (more…)
A few days ago, I had dinner* with the publicist of a certain famous opera singer. The conversation went something like this:
Last night I went to see Yuja Wang perform with the San Francisco Symphony. She played extremely well. It was beautiful and impressive, which is all you can really ask for.
After the performance, there was a Q&A session with Yuja and Mason Bates, who had premiered a work for electronics and orchestra in the same concert. My question was “If you were in charge, what would you do to improve the traditional classical concert experience?”
The BBC’s Today program (from yesterday) uses David Stubbs’ new book Fear of Music – Why People Get Rothko But Don’t Get Stockhausen as the starting point for a discussion about the not-particularly-surprising unpopularity of music that sounds bad.