Archive for the ‘Why I Left Muncie’ Category

Old-world Glory from Boston

Friday, April 24th, 2015

By Sedgwick Clark When Richard Strauss conducted the Boston Symphony in 1904, he stopped the players during a rehearsal and said, “Gentlemen, when you play my music I hear all the notes. But I don’t want to hear all the notes.” My guess is that he would have loved to hear Andris Nelsons conduct his […]

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New York Phil’s 21st-century Tour

Friday, April 17th, 2015

By Sedgwick Clark Repertoire for international orchestra tours is usually so ho-hum that Alan Gilbert’s tour with the New York Philharmonic, which began on April 16 in Dublin, came as a jolt to me. If you’ve been going to his concerts the past few weeks, you’ll have heard the music—and noted, I should add, the […]

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Boulez on CD

Friday, April 3rd, 2015

By Sedgwick Clark Pierre Boulez turned 90 last week, on March 26. At first he struck fear in the ears of traditional concertgoers. But by his eighties he was hailed as a grand old man of music, in demand by all the major orchestras of the world. Fortunately, Boulez’s performing career is well documented, and […]

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My Date with Jury Duty

Friday, March 20th, 2015

By Sedgwick Clark Next week, for the first time as a citizen of New York County, I shall descend to the lower depths of Manhattan and perform my solemn rite of jury duty without the concomitant joy of combing through the record bins of J & R Music. J & R closed its classical department […]

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Simon Rattle, the LSO’s Right Choice?

Thursday, March 5th, 2015

By Sedgwick Clark Thank heavens, at least this move on the musical scrabble board is settled. Local hero Simon Rattle will return home in 2017 from his 16-year Berlin odyssey to become music director of Britain’s foremost musical organization, the London Symphony Orchestra. He describes it as his “last job.” He is indisputably an international […]

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What’s Next at the Phil?

Thursday, February 19th, 2015

By Sedgwick Clark We last convened in this space in late October when I wrote in dismay about the exalted Berlin Philharmonic’s dismal showing under Simon Rattle at Carnegie Hall. I promised (rather optimistically, as it turns out) that I would report the following week on an orchestra at the top of its form. That […]

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Is the Berlin Philharmonic Still “Great”?

Thursday, October 30th, 2014

By Sedgwick Clark That’s a deliberately provocative question, of course. But when the best one can say about Carnegie Hall’s Opening Night Gala is that the scaffolding has been removed after three years, there’s a problem. The building’s elegant façade, glistening proudly in its new exterior lighting, looks simply gorgeous. It’s a necessary reminder that […]

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Frans Brüggen—Competitor with the Greats

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

By Sedgwick Clark Hearing Frans Brüggen’s recording of Mozart’s 40th and Beethoven’s First on Philips was a “eureka” moment: at last, someone from the authentic-performance school who was equally illuminating and individual to stand with Walter’s early-’50s Mozart, Szell’s Beethoven, and selected performances by Toscanini, Furtwängler, Monteux, Klemperer, and others from whom I first learned […]

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Mostly Moonstruck at Lincoln Center

Thursday, August 14th, 2014

By Sedgwick Clark Lincoln Center was once a place I avoided like the plague in the summer—staid programs, mediocre performances—but there’s no denying that the kinks have long been worked out of its two major summer festivals. One may have one’s likes and dislikes, as I expressed last week about three of this summer’s Lincoln […]

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Lincoln Center Festival Memories

Thursday, August 7th, 2014

By Sedgwick Clark The Tsar’s Bride What a night at the concert opera, primarily due to the conducting of Gennadi Rozhdestvensky! Returning to New York after far too many years for a pair of performances of Rimsky-Korsakov’s opera, he reminded listeners once again of the importance of character in a musical performance. A silly, self-evident […]

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