Archive for the Uncategorized Category

Philharmonia – Live from London: About Mahler Symphony No. 3 | Philharmonia Orchestra

Posted in Uncategorized on September 30, 2017 by orinococds

Dear Air New Zealand…

Posted in Uncategorized on February 9, 2017 by orinococds

Last week, I had an unprecedented travel experience, and not in a good way. See my letter to the airline below. — Dear Air New Zealand, My name is Erin and I am one of your frequent traveller…

Source: Dear Air New Zealand…

STARK : The concerto

Posted in Uncategorized on November 4, 2016 by orinococds

There is icing sugar all over my face. I’ve finally finished my violin concerto. And I survived. And I think I deserve this pretty massive jammy donut I’m currently consuming. I haven&#…

Source: STARK : The concerto

Interpreting Performance: An Interview with Imogen Cooper

Posted in Uncategorized on June 21, 2013 by orinococds

The Oxford Culture Review

As an international concert pianist, Imogen Cooper’s career has encompassed performances across the globe, working with musicians such as Sir Colin Davis and Sir Simon Rattle, and recording works by Schubert, Mozart, Schumann, and Beethoven amongst others. She has recently been appointed Oxford’s Humanitas Professor of Classical Music and Musical Education, a series of visiting professorships dedicated to addressing themes in the arts, social sciences, and humanities. I spoke to her about her career as a pianist and her new role as Humanitas Professor.

Why do you choose to play Schubert? What’s special about his music for you?

It’s a love affair that goes back a very long way. I first heard his music when I was a teenager studying in Paris. I didn’t hear it through any of my teachers and I’m rather glad of that, because I’m not sure French Schubert is necessarily something what I would have…

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John Button’s picks for the best of 2012 – DomPost newspaper

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , on March 22, 2013 by orinococds

Reviewer John Button’s picks for the best of 2012. As published in Wellington’s DomPost newspaper Dec 26th.

In no particular order —

“With his mix of London and Polish forces, early music specialist McCreesh delivers one of the most powerful versions of Berlioz’s blend of the refined and the super spectacular in sound to match.”

  • Debussy: Orchestral Works complete — Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Stephane Deneve conductor Chandos CHsa 5012(2)

“With this two-disk set of Debussy’s major orchestral works, the RSNO display just how conductor Deneve has made them one of the finest exponents of French orchestral music around. And the sound is fabulous.”

  • Debussy: Preludes Books 1&2; Trois Nocturnes; Prelude L’Apres midi D’un Faune — Alexei Lubimov and Alexei Zuev (pianos) ECM New Series 2241.42

“Playing on two early 20th Century pianos – a Bechstein and a Steinway – Lubimov attempts to create a sonority familiar to Debussy and his beloved Bluthner. The result is fabulous playing with the rarely heard two piano transcriptions of popular orchestral works an added incentive to buy.”

  • Petterson: Symphony No. 6 — Norkopping Symphony Orchestra, Christian Lindberg conductor. BIS SACD-1980

“This post Mahlerian composer died in 1980, after a long illness, but his music lives on, and his Sixth Symphony is a long span construction of power and dark beauty. The Norkopping orchestra play this music as if it were in the blood.”

  • Beethoven: Diabelli Variations — Andreas Staier (Fortepiano). Harmonia Mundi HMC 902091

“Not only one of the finest performances of Beethoven’s great set of variations, but, as a bonus, a selection of other composers’ variations given to publisher Diabelli. A young Liszt, Mozart’s son and Schubert are among a fascinating list”

  • Liszt: Anees De Peleginage — Bertrand Chamayou (piano). Naive V5260

This young Frenchman captures the range of Liszt’s astonishing musical journeys with playing of trancendental quality.”

  • Blake: Angel at Aripara — Kenneth Young (conductor). Atoll ACD44

“Composed between 2000 and 2007, these four string works take their inspiration from the photographs of Robin Morrison: works of direct power and emotional committment, superbly played by the strings of the NZSO.”

  • Messiaen: Turangalila  Symphonie — Juanjo Mena (conductor). Hyperion CDA67816

“Bergen might seem an unlikely place for a performance of such dizzying incandescence, but with that orchestra now among the European elite, and giving Spanish conductor Mena their finest playing, this is probably the finest recording of Messiaen’s most played work.”

  • Mozart: Piano Works — Zhu Xiao-Mei (piano). Mirare MIR152

“Now living in Paris, and a survivor of the Cultural Revolution, Zhu Xiao-Mei gives us the sort of mix of simplicity and sophistication in Mozart that eludes all but a small elite of pianists. “

Van Cliburn dies, aged 78

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , on March 3, 2013 by orinococds

Van Cliburn returned to Moscow in 2004, performing at a memorial concert for victims of the Beslan school massacre.

Legendary pianist Van Cliburn the only solo musician of any genre to receive a ticker-tape parade in New York City and the first classical musician to sell a million albums, died Wednesday morning in his Fort Worth, Texas, home. The 78-year-old Texan soared to world fame in 1958 when he won the first International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, at the height of the Cold War.


OBITUARY By Dennis McLellan, Los Angeles TimesFebruary 28, 2013

After a tense decade of air raid sirens, duck-and-cover drills and fears of Soviet superiority, hope for America came in an unlikely form in the late 1950s: a lanky, 23-year-old Texan with a head full of curls and huge hands that ranged across a piano keyboard with virtuosic power.

With his transcendent performances of Tchaikovsky’s First and Rachmaninoff’s Third piano concertos, Van Cliburn brought 1,500 Russians to their feet in a Moscow concert hall.

Declared the victor of the first International Tchaikovsky Competition, the young American became a hero of the Cold War era and an object of adoration around the world, whose fame helped bring classical music to the masses.

After the humiliation of Sputnik, Americans declared a cultural victory with Cliburn. Dubbed the “American Sputnik,” he was feted like no other classical musician before him, with a ticker-tape parade in New York City and fan clubs to rival a movie idol’s.

Cliburn, whose breakthrough success in 1958 made him one of the world’s most celebrated pianists, died Wednesday of bone cancer at his Forth Worth home, said his publicist, Mary Lou Falcone. He was 78.

He kept up a frenetic schedule of more than 100 concerts a year for two decades, until retiring from the performance circuit in 1978. In the mid-1990s he embarked on a long-anticipated comeback tour that drew poor reviews.

A child prodigy, Cliburn was taught by his pianist mother until he entered Juilliard School of Music in New York in 1951 at age 17. Three years later he won the prestigious Leventritt international competition, which earned him solo engagements with the New York Philharmonic and other orchestras.

But he remained little known outside music circles before arriving in Moscow in 1958.

Competing against 49 other pianists from 19 countries at the first Tchaikovsky International Piano and Violin Festival, the technically brilliant Cliburn created a sensation with the romantic sweep of his playing in the first two rounds of the competition.

By the time he came on stage to play in the final round, “the crowd had become nearly hysterical,” Chicago arts critic  Howard Reich wrote in “Van Cliburn,” his 1993 biography. “Roughly 1,500 people had jammed the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatory; thousands more waited outside.”

Instantaneous ovations greeted Cliburn’s playing of Tchaikovsky’s First Piano Concerto, Reich wrote, and his performance of a new solo piece required of all finalists, a rondo by Soviet composer and contest judge Dmitry Kabalevsky, earned him a standing ovation.

But when Cliburn finished Rachmaninoff’s technically difficult Third Piano Concerto, the audience erupted into a thunderous standing ovation that continued after he left the stage. Then the jury stood and joined in. Two judges even jumped up and hugged each other.

“A boyish, curly-haired young man from Kilgore, Texas, took musical Moscow by storm tonight,” a New York Times correspondent reported. “Mr. Cliburn is clearly the popular favorite and all Moscow is wondering whether an American will walk off with top honors.”

The jury, particularly the Soviet and Soviet bloc judges who would cast the deciding votes, feared the consequences of awarding the prize to an American.

According to Reich’s book, the Soviet minister of culture took that question all the way to the top — to the chairman of the Council of Ministers, Nikita Khrushchev.

“What do the professionals say about him? Is he the best?” Khrushchev asked.

“Yes, he is the best,” the minister of culture replied.

“In this case, give him the first prize,” Khrushchev said.

Trumpeted on the cover of Time magazine as “The Texan Who Conquered Russia,” the rangy, 6-foot-4 Cliburn was besieged by screaming admirers in cities where he appeared. And after he played before audiences of more than 80,000 on two nights in Chicago, the city’s Elvis Presley Fan Club changed its name to the Van Cliburn Fan Club.

“He was bigger than a rock star,” Reich told The Times last summer. “Very few rock stars get an invitation to the White House and the Kremlin. This was so beyond anything in American entertainment and culture.”

Marc Taddei, conductor of Orchestra Wellington – new website

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on March 2, 2013 by orinococds

This link will take you to Marc’s impressive and informative new site, packed with locally relevant music news. Well worth a look, and a good heads up as to what’s happening musically in our region

To check out the website for Orchestra Wellington click here.ImageImage