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Composer: Stucky, Steven (1949-2016)

Fact file
Year of birth1949
Year of death2016
NationalityUnited States
Period20th century
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A gorgeous chamber music première in Seattle

Steven Stucky © Hoebermann
Framed by passionate performances of Mendelssohn and Brahms, a gorgeous neo-Romantic work by Steven Stucky is unveiled in this installment of the 2015 Summer Festival. 
****1
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The Classical Style at Carnegie Hall

© Chris Lee
The opera, directed by Mary Birnbaum, rotates through a cast of characters including Tonic, Dominant, and Subdominant as well as a be-wigged Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven.
***11
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Lutosławski and his influences: with the LA Phil New Music Group

Lionel Bringuier © Jonathan Grimbert-Barré
At first hearing the idea of the music of Witold Lutosławski as the centerpiece of a Los Angeles Philharmonic “Green Umbrella” concert made a strangely incongruous impression. Music new or difficult is the usual fare of such a program.
*****
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Opening night with LA Phil and Dudamel a thrill ride

Gustavo Dudamel conducting the LA Phil  ©  Courtesy of Los Angeles Philharmonic Association
The total timing of the music on the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s season premiere was barely an hour long. On the page the line-up looked strange. First half: Ravel’s Pavane pour une infante défunte and the world premiere of a work by local composer Steven Stucky. The second half: Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring.
****1
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Manfred Honeck and the Pittsburgh Symphony at Avery Fisher Hall

Manfred Honeck,  ©  Jason Cohn
To paraphrase Richard Strauss’ advice to young conductors: “If you think the brass are playing too soft, ask them to play softer.” Manfred Honeck, music director of the Pittsburgh Symphony, clearly thinks that the brass can never play loudly enough.
***11
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