Latvian soprano Kristine Opolais shot to international fame in 2010 in Dvořák’s Rusalka at the Bavarian State Opera. She talks to us having recently performed the role in Mary Zimmerman’s much anticipated new production at The Met.
The Holland Festival has always celebrated and promoted new work and takes its 70th anniversary to both look forward, with plenty of world premières, but also to reflect on its past.
© Wilfried Hösl
© Javier del Real | Teatro Real
© Alastair Muir
© Wilfried Hösl | Bayerische Staatsoper
© Ramella Giannese | Teatro Regio di Torino
© Todd Rosenberg Photography
News: world première...
Savonlinna’s contribution to the centenary has been to commission a new work from the country’s senior operatic composer, Aulis Sallinen. Not an opera per se in this case, but what he describes as a “chronicle for speaker, four singers, orchestra and Olavinlinna”.
Albanian soprano Ermonela Jaho is renowned for heartfelt performances as some of opera's most tortured soprano roles, especially Violetta in La traviata, the opera in which she sprang to fame in London when she jumped in for an indisposed Anna Netrebko.
Some people crack open the Champagne to launch the New Year, but here at Bachtrack Towers the corks have barely popped before we dive into the classical music statistics for the year just ended.
Search back through the previous winners and one name leaps out. In 1995, the youngest of the three age categories (aged 14-years and under) was won by Latvian violinist Baiba Skride, who went on to build a strong international career.
Bychkov and Tchaikovsky...
Conductor Semyon Bychkov has had a long relationship with Tchaikovsky’s music and “Beloved Friend” is the title chosen for his series which travels to New York this January for a series of concerts and related events with the NY Philharmonic spanning three weeks.
The concert programme for the 2017 Malta International Music Festival runs for ten days, from 21st to 30th April. But there is no question as to which is the star draw: on Saturday 29th, Russian pianist Grigory Sokolov will be performing in Malta for the first time.
We preview...in Bruges
Concertgebouw Brugge’s 2017 Bach Academy is devoted to the Reformation’s riches, at which Johann Sebastian is firmly rooted at the centre. Spanning just five days, the festival combines traditionally authentic performance styles alongside more improvisatory music which takes Bach as its inspiration.
Nielsen, Glanert, Sibelius
BBC Symphony Orchestra; Sakari Oramo; BBC Singers
Latest reviewsSee more...
Splendid performances and a Nazi makeover turns Puccini's political tragedy into a visceral experience.
National Theatre Brno brings David Radok’s 2014 staging of Janáček’s Makropulos Case to the Hong Kong Arts Festival, the opera's first-ever journey to Asia, with Annalena Persson in the lead.
Handel arias showcased by non-Handelian soprano and great ensemble Il pomo d'oro, with commentary by Donna Leon.
It's not really an opera (or even an oratorio), but Ted Hearne's The Source is important and engaging.
The Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra performed new(ish) music straight from its own bloodline (René Staar) under the direction of Maestro Franz Welser-Möst alongside works by Schubert, R. Strauss, and, inevitably, Strauss II in their first concert of 2017 at Carnegie Hall.
CONTEMPORARY MONTH HIGHLIGHTS
Daniel Barenboim inaugurated last month the Barenboim-Said Academy in Berlin. The most interesting feature of the hall lies not in its flowing architecture, but rather in its name: the Pierre Boulez Saal. One year after the French composer death, what is his legacy?
There are plenty of occasions to hear Beethoven's symphonies or Mozart's operas throughout the year. But what about the 21st century repertoire? Contemporary music lovers often find it hard to quench their thirst for new music. Thankfully, some festivals specialise in contemporary music, giving to everyone the opportunity to drink their fill.
NOVEMBER FOCUS ON ASIA
Australian composer Brett Dean’s compositions appear in the 8th Hong Kong International Chamber Music Festival next January, where he is composer-in-residence.
RECENT ARTICLES AND PREVIEWS
We learn about...
Arup Acoustics are one of the world's foremost acoustics practices. David Karlin visits their Soundlab facility in London, which lets the listener hear how a hall will sound from various seat positions.
We learn about...
A pupil of Russell Johnston at Artec, Sam Berkow has been the acoustical designer of performing arts venues and recording studios. He talks to David Karlin about modern acoustics, and his belief that modern performance spaces should support a wide range of performances without acoustical compromise.
2017 is the 175th birthday of NY Phil, as well as being the 70th of John Adams and the 50th of outgoing Music Director Alan Gilbert, who takes on the lion's share of the conducting duties. 2017 highlights will include world premières by Marsalis, Gruber and Auerbach. This preview was sponsored by the New York Philharmonic Orchestra