Archive for the ‘Why I Left Muncie’ Category

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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“Switzerland in America”

Thursday, July 31st, 2014

That’s how Werner Klemperer described Aspen to me when he was performing at the town’s noted music festival in the early ’80s. When I arrived in Aspen to cover the Music Festival’s 1977 summer season for Musical America (December ’77), the town’s first stoplights had been installed recently, riling old timers who saw their community […]

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Botstein and the ASO Exhilarate at 20

Thursday, July 10th, 2014

By Sedgwick Clark Leon Botstein just ended his 20th season as music director of the American Symphony Orchestra, during which he led an opera-in-concert performance of Richard Strauss’s Feuersnot, Bruch’s oratorio Moses, a concert of English music that included Walton’s Symphony No. 2, which Botstein called “one of the great symphonies of the twentieth century” […]

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Bravo to the Bavarians

Thursday, June 12th, 2014

By Sedgwick Clark I have a soft spot for the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra of Munich. It played the first concert I ever heard in Carnegie Hall, on October 17, 1968. Rafael Kubelik conducted the BRSO in the first performance I ever heard of Janáček’s Sinfonietta and Bruckner’s Fourth Symphony. The next evening he conducted […]

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Bye-Bye, Spring for Music

Friday, May 23rd, 2014

By Sedgwick Clark The critics’ darling series “Spring for Music” had four good years of thoughtful, sometimes innovative programs played by first-rate American orchestras from the provinces for a mere $25 a ticket in Carnegie Hall, no less. But none of our country’s billionaires or blue-chip companies was willing to chip in a couple mils […]

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(Relatively) Short Takes

Thursday, May 15th, 2014

By Sedgwick Clark New York Philharmonic/Christoph von Dohnányi; Paul Lewis, piano, April 10—If you like your Brahms Germanic, the British pianist Paul Lewis is not your cup of schlag. He has been praised for his Schubert and Beethoven performances in small venues hereabouts and on Harmonia Mundi recordings, but this was his first appearance with […]

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Requiems, British and American

Friday, May 9th, 2014

By Sedgwick Clark In the space of a single week, New Yorkers were treated to a pair of requiems at Carnegie Hall that combined the traditional Mass for the Dead text with modern-day poetry to create strikingly personal visions of final rest. In 1961 Benjamin Britten composed his War Requiem, interspersing anti-war poems by Wilfred […]

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April in New York

Thursday, May 1st, 2014

By Sedgwick Clark Last week’s blog (April 24) was written, but for some reason in the posting process didn’t reach this stage. I wrote about the New York Philharmonic’s performance of Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd, a recital by Murray Perahia, and a Philharmonic concert in which Manfred Honeck deputized for Gustavo Dudamel. It is available […]

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