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Leonard Bernstein

Leonard Bernstein's Batonmaker

John Mauceri | Posted 11.13.2015 | Arts
John Mauceri

Today we learned of the death of Dick Horowitz at the age of 91. You perhaps never heard of him. If you went to the Metropolitan Opera or listened to its broadcasts any time from 1946 until two years ago, you definitely heard Dick Horowitz.

Too Late to Take the Fifth

Daron Hagen | Posted 10.06.2015 | Arts
Daron Hagen

Why bother? Because, for better or worse, the symphony remains the greatest technical and aesthetic challenge and resulting statement that a serious composer can attempt outside of opera.

CultureZohn: Ode to Dudamel

Patricia Zohn | Posted 09.29.2015 | Arts
Patricia Zohn

Dudamel has become the embodiment of the cultural renaissance of Los Angeles. I never tire of watching the dip in his knees when a particularly pungent musical passage comes along and then the way he rises on his toes for a fanfare. His solidarity with the youth of his troubled native country is commendable and this is where he feels his focus should be. But is the Ode to Joy Dudamel's sotto voce answer to his critics who decry his silence on Venezuela? Beethoven may have been deaf, but Dudamel is not.

Miles Davis At Newport: Chats with George Wein, David Benoit and Stevie Holland, Plus Fireships, Labor Camp and Delta Deep Exclusives

Mike Ragogna | Posted 06.26.2015 | Entertainment
Mike Ragogna

George, you're associated with the creation of the new box set Miles Davis At Newport 1955-1975. What was it like for you the first time you saw him at Newport?

Women on Top: On the Town, New York City Ballet Classic I and American Ballet Theatre's Giselle

Carla Escoda | Posted 05.28.2015 | Arts
Carla Escoda

Broadway and ballet stages are not the usual first stop for those seeking images of female empowerment. But Friday and Saturday at Lincoln Center and ...

Against Two-Tap Opera

Daron Hagen | Posted 05.15.2015 | Arts
Daron Hagen

The opera's conductor laughed when I told him. "I recall teaching one of my protégés how to use a rotary phone; he kept looking for buttons to push." "Boy or girl?" I quipped.

On The Future of Wagnerism, Part 6: The Wagner Family and Questions of Forgiveness (Conclusion)

Lawrence D. Mass, M.D. | Posted 05.12.2015 | Arts
Lawrence D. Mass, M.D.

Just as we think of the films of the exceptionally gifted Leni Riefenstahl as Nazi art, so we are in an inexorable process of appreciating much of the art of Richard Wagner as such.

On the Future of Wagnerism, Part 5: The Wagner Family and Questions of Forgiveness

Lawrence D. Mass, M.D. | Posted 05.12.2015 | Arts
Lawrence D. Mass, M.D.

Instead of asking for forgiveness or otherwise expressing regret for the past, or even honestly and clearly acknowledging it, what most of these Nazi-tainted German artists have done at best, individually or collectively, is what might be called gestures of redress

A Conversation With Pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet -- This Week With San Francisco Symphony

Sean Martinfield | Posted 05.06.2015 | San Francisco
Sean Martinfield

Pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet joins Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony this week in four performances of Leonard Bernstein's "Symphony No. 2: The Age of Anxiety."

'On the Town': No Frank, No Gene, No Jules, No Problem

Barry Singer | Posted 06.03.2015 | Arts
Barry Singer

My daughters, Lea and Sara, ages 9 and 12, were very skeptical about On the Town as a revival. MGM's 1949 movie version is one of their absolute favorites.

Bernstein's Seemingly Simple Song

Daron Hagen | Posted 05.17.2015 | Arts
Daron Hagen

When I was eleven years old, my brother, who two years earlier had turned me on to Jesus Christ Superstar, played me MASS.

Human and Superhuman: Ballet San Jose in MasterPieces of American Ballet

Carla Escoda | Posted 04.24.2015 | Arts
Carla Escoda

In his warm-up speech on Saturday night, Ballet San Jose's new CEO, Alan Hineline, alerted the audience to the "superhuman level of athleticism" on display in the third and closing piece of the evening, Twyla Tharp's In the Upper Room.

Aisle View: The 2014 10 Best List

Steven Suskin | Posted 02.15.2015 | Arts
Steven Suskin

This was a relatively strong year; where the canker gnaws, as good old blimey slimey Captain Hook might say, is in the musical department.

'On The Town' Is One Helluva Broadway Show

Wilborn Hampton | Posted 10.17.2014 | Arts
Wilborn Hampton

The Bronx is still up and the Battery is still down, but the rest of this delightful new Broadway revival of On the Town has been given a facelift tha...

Once More, Back On The Town

Steven Suskin | Posted 12.16.2014 | Arts
Steven Suskin

Playgoers who haven't walked away from a Broadway musical beaming since before they can remember should head over to Times Square for On The Town, the 1944 musical which introduced Leonard Bernstein, Betty Comden, Adolph Green and Jerome Robbins.

Snacks at Your Seats on Broadway, Complete With Delivery

Cara Joy David | Posted 12.14.2014 | Arts
Cara Joy David

Forget about the fact that you're supposed to be focusing on the art form on the stage. Forget about the fact that you -- and the people sitting next to you -- have spent hundreds of dollars to see/hear the show. Having super noisy snacks is more important.

Music in the Southwest Part 2: The Tucson Symphony Orchestra

Daniel Asia | Posted 12.03.2014 | Arts
Daniel Asia

Something amazing happened in Tucson over the last weekend, when the Tucson Symphony Orchestra played an all-American program of music by Bernstein, Gershwin, and Copland to open its new season.

Celebrating Bernstein on Broadway With a Special Bernstein Event

Shoshana Greenberg | Posted 11.16.2014 | Arts
Shoshana Greenberg

As rehearsals continued for the upcoming Broadway revival of On the Town, New York City audiences had a more immediate opportunity to celebrate Leonard Bernstein's first musical about sailors on leave in the Big Apple.

Field Notes From a Music Biz Life (Part 3)

Michael Sigman | Posted 10.27.2014 | Entertainment
Michael Sigman

My father, the songwriter Carl Sigman, was a rational man and his anti-rock screeds had their own internal logic: "It's noise," therefore "it's not music." Ipso facto, "they should call it something else." QED.

Friends, Rain Plans, Love Songs & Lullabies: Conversations with Smokey Robinson, Israel Nash & Darryl Tookes

Mike Ragogna | Posted 10.26.2014 | Entertainment
Mike Ragogna

Smokey Robinson: "When I sit down to write a song, every time I try to write a song, I'm trying to write a song that people would've sung 50 years ago, now, and 50 years from now."

Lauren Bacall, Too ...

John Mauceri | Posted 10.15.2014 | Arts
John Mauceri

Inadvertent angels come in many sizes and shapes. They are not always angels of mercy, and -- as many can attest -- Lauren Bacall was no Mother Teresa. And yet there was at least one lesson to be learned from knowing her a little.

It's About the Music, Stupid!

George Heymont | Posted 10.11.2014 | Arts
George Heymont

With so many people listening to music through earbuds, I frequently wonder if any of them have a library of music resting within their memory that they can access without the help of an electronic device.

Elaine Stritch, Carlo Bergonzi, Mary Rodgers and Lorin Maazel - Part 2

John Mauceri | Posted 10.05.2014 | Arts
John Mauceri

Carlo Bergonzi was one of the "other" tenors when I was a teenager going to the Metropolitan Opera. Like Nicolai Gedda, Bergonzi was a tenor's tenor. He did not send off fireworks like a Tucker or a Corelli. He did not summon the deep wells of sadness that Vickers could. He was simply perfect.

Elaine Stritch, Carlo Bergonzi, Mary Rodgers and Lorin Maazel (Part 1)

John Mauceri | Posted 10.04.2014 | Arts
John Mauceri

Within the past month we have read with sadness of the deaths of four important artists who seemingly have little in common: composer and author Mary Rodgers Guettel, internationally famous American conductor Lorin Maazel, Broadway and cabaret star Elaine Stritch, and the legendary operatic tenor Carlo Bergonzi. They do actually have one thing in common: me.

The Great Dream: An American Opera

Daron Hagen | Posted 09.17.2014 | Arts
Daron Hagen

We're in for a wild ride the next few years. Some really great operas are going to be produced. The Great Dream is coming true.