Gustav Mahler was born today in 1860 – happy birthday!
We asked the world’s best conductors when they first heard the music of Mahler – this is what they said:
[Mark Wigglesworth] gives an unbearably moving account of the score. (Cara Chanteau, The Independent, 27 June 2016)
This is Janáček done slowly and lyrically, with the emphasis placed on the score’s dark poetry and depth of musical and psychological detail. The opera’s passion and compassion burn fiercely yet lingeringly: this is an interpretation that seeps under your skin rather than hits you in the solar plexus and is unquestionably all the more powerful for it. (Tim Ashley, The Guardian, 24 June 2016)
Wigglesworth has an extraordinary grasp of this score and the orchestra play their hearts out for him. (Barry Millington, Evening Standard, 27 June 2016)
Right from the searing, bittersweet opening, the music’s warmth and humanity speak directly. Even the most flawed characters are given the benefit of musical nuance (John Allison, The Telegraph, 27 June 2016)
On 23 June Mark Wigglesworth and the ENO orchestra premièred David Alden’s production of Jenůfa at the English National Opera. American soprano Laura Wilde made her role debut as Jenůfa, with Michaela Martens as her stepmother the Kostelnička.
Further performances take place on 1, 6 and 8 July – find out more on the website of the English National Opera.
The Teatro Municipal de Santiago has published a trailer for Marcelo Lombardero’s over-the-top production of Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny, which was premièred on 23 June:
Further performances will take place on 28, 29 and 30 June and on 1 July – find out more on the website of the Teatro Municipal de Santiago.
Read a [Spanish] review on Arte Al Limite.
On 22 June, Arvo Pärt received an honorary degree in Music from Oxford University at the annual Encaenia ceremony.
Nine distinguished figures from the fields of theology, law, economics, architecture, film, science, engineering and music received honorary degrees at the ceremony held at the Sheldonian Theatre.
These were Arvo Pärt, economist Paul Krugman, film director Pedro Almodóvar, architect Kazuyo Sejima, philosopher and theologian Tomáš Halík, Lord Johathan Mance, a Justice of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom, neurobiologist Cornelia Bargmann, physicist Mildred Dresselhaus and Sir Jonathan Ive, Chief Design Officer of Apple Inc.
Our latest newsletter – an opera special with features on current productions of The Cunning Little Vixen, Wozzeck and Jenůfa – is out now.
Leoš Janáček’s three-act opera Katya Kabanova is currently being staged at the Theater Krefeld Mönchengladbach.
Helen Malkowsky’s production, which is directed by Mihkel Kütson, is receiving rave reviews: find a [German] collection on the website of the Theater Krefeld Mönchengladbach.
Watch the trailer on YouTube:
The Alban Berg monument will be unveiled today at 22:00 at the Herbert von Karajan-Platz in front of the Wiener Staatsoper.
phil Blech and the Arnold Schoenberg Chor will perform works by Strauss, Mahler, Schönberg and Berg, Reinhold Mitterlehner, Thomas Drozda, Andreas Mailath-Pokorny, Wolf. D. Prix and Peter Wolf will give speeches.
These are the most thrilling moments in my profession, when I have the honor to première a new piece. One has to be the medium, midwife and guardian angel at same time. (Patricia Kopatchinskaja on Red Inner Light Sculpture)
On 10 June Patricia Kopatchinskaja premièred Mauricio Sotelo’s Red Inner Light Sculpture in St. Paul, MN, together with flamenco dancer Rubén Olmo, percussionist Agustín Diassera, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra and conductor Tito Muñoz.
StarTribune has reviewed the world première:
The evening’s finale, the new piece that Kopatchinskaja commissioned, Red Inner Light Sculpture, turned out to be an unbuttoned, imaginative romp, an exploration of Andalusian flamenco with exuberant, witty dancing by Ruben Olmo, inventive percussion by Agustin Diassera and energetic, go-for-broke violin playing by the wild child herself.(Michael Anthony, StarTribune, 11 June 2016)
Vykintas Baltakas' new album will arouse interest by analytical and also programmatical listeners. The piece Pasaka retells the mythological version of genesis and (co)ro(na) represents a fully composed fermata. Baltakas is successful in turning enigmas of musical aesthetics into tones and creates a musical experience which is both diversified and homogeneous at the same time.
Kairos’ new CD features 8 works by Vykintas Baltakas, recorded by artists such as the Tokyo Sinfonietta, Lithuanian Ensemble Network, Chordos Quartet, SWR Sinfonieorchester Baden-Baden und Freiburg, WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln and Emilio Pomárico.
You can download the full booklet and order your copy in the Kairos web store.
“It should be one’s sole endeavour to see everything afresh and create it anew.” (Gustav Mahler in H-L. La Grange: Mahler)
Tonight the ensemble mini will perform Michelle Castelletti’s chamber arrangement of Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No 10 at the Musikbrauerei in Berlin.
Pärt’s orchestration is exceptional and delves subtly into colors within the limited palette, for instance using open strings and harmonics to create shining, single-note highlights. The performance was a good one, breathing and luminous. (Timothy Mangan, The Orange County Register, 29 May 2016)
Together with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Gustavo Dudamel performed the world première of Arvo Pärt’s Greater Antiphons for string orchestraon 28 May at the Mozart & Pärt festival in Los Angeles.
Read Timothy Mangan’s full review in The Orange County Register.
“It seems like the further one sinks inside the text, the further one becomes removed from the particulars of the story and instead gets involved with something deeper and more ambiguous to do with the inner experiences of a protagonist who is searching for … something.”
Rehearsals for David Fennessy’s Sweat Of the Sun are underway – the music theatre, which is based on German director Werner Herzog’s Conquest of the Useless, will be premièred by the Münchener Kammerorchester on 28 May at the Münchener Biennale.