Classical Music Concerts and Reviews

From our concerts homepage you can find the best classical music concerts and events taking place around the world, featuring some of the best orchestras from the most prestigious concert halls. Whether you’re looking for symphony concerts, chamber music recitals, choral concerts, the most daringly avant-garde or the most popular classical music, you can find it all here, as well as reviews and insightful feature articles.
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For Bachtrack members

February 2017 Hot List: For members only

Here is your February 2017 Hot List, hand-picked by our editorial team from the wealth of listings (33 pages!) on 'What's On' section. 
February 2017
Evening performance
Matinee performance
Reviewed in Hamburg

Thielemann's way with Wagner

Christian Thielemann, the Staatskapelle Dresden and a star-studded cast compress Wagner's Ring cycle into a tale of Siegmund, Sieglinde, Hunding and Brünnhilde.
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Reviewed in Houston

Yo-Yo Ma dazzles Houston with Dvořák

While passion, supreme technical mastery, and inspiration all come to mind watching a celebrity like Ma perform, camaraderie, perhaps, is the best word for this concert.
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Reviewed in Milan

A glimpse of paradise in Mahler's Ninth

The final note, marked “esterbend” (dying), possessed breathtaking fragility. Live in the concert hall, one cannot imagine it done better than this.
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Malta International Music Festival 2017

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.
Bychkov in NYC

Beloved Friend: a long-term relationship with 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.

Opinion: UK concert times should change

David argues that typical UK concert times are almost guaranteed to put off the under 55 age group, especially those with kids.
Contemporary focus

A guide to contemporary music festivals

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.

Concert hall acoustics in the 21st century: Interview with Sam Berkow

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.
Contemporary focus

Keeping the Boulez spirit alive

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?

Opinion: Beer with Bruckner?

Many composers enjoyed a drop of the hard stuff. But why do classical music venues allow audiences to indulge during concerts?
Contemporary focus

Remembering the legacy of Pauline Oliveros

“Music is a multi-dimensional, dynamic process unfolding as a relationship between an individual or a group of individuals, and sound vibrations.
Concert halls

Opinion: A tale of three cities

Travel broadens the mind. It also opens the ears. For years, I was very happy to hear concerts in London… until I heard halls elsewhere.
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WorcesterThe Sixteen: Bach Magnificat - Worcester

The Orchestra of The Sixteen; Harry Christophers; The Sixteen

LondonMozart Requiem by Candlelight

Anna Douglass; Dietrich Bethge; Robyn Allegra Parton; Greg Tassell; Jessica Gillingwater; Cheney Kent

PragueMartinů, Strauss, Janáček

Martinů, Strauss R., Janáček
Radek Baborák; Jiří Bělohlávek; Czech Philharmonic Orchestra

RigaBeethoven and Schubert

Beethoven, Schubert, Brahms, Webern
Gunta Abele; Gérard Wyss

LondonLunchtime Concert - The Countess of Wessex’s String Orchestra

Brahms: Clarinet Quintet in B minor, Op.115
Countess of Wessex’s String Orchestra

OxfordBach and the Italian Concerto

Bach, Vivaldi, Albinoni, Marcello
Academy of Ancient Music

MadridBach, Prokofiev, Stravinsky, Torres

Bach, Prokofiev, Stravinsky, Torres
Orquesta Nacional de España; Jordi Bernàcer; Frank Peter Zimmermann

PamplonaOrquesta Sinfónica de Navarra

Aragón, García Leoz, Bartók, Hindemith
Orquesta Sinfónica de Navarra; Jesus Echeverria
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Black Angels: a brush with death

The Grim Reaper swept the aisles of the Royal Festival Hall in Vladimir Jurowski's latest programme in the Southbank Centre’s “Belief and Beyond Belief” series which explores faith and spirituality. 
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Lines of beauty: Rihm and Bruckner from the BBCSO

Lothar Koenigs conducted the BBC Symphony Orchestra in some highly horizontal-oriented Bruckner and the UK première of a genial piano concerto from Wolfgang Rihm with soloist Nicolas Hodges
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Full of the joys of spring in Beethoven

Soon to be seventy, Murray Perahia and the Academy of St Martin in the Fields give full expression to the life force that is Beethoven, in their continuing cycle of the piano concertos.
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Pallid Berlioz from the OAE

A disappointing pairing of Berlioz and Mendelssohn from a conductorless Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. 
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Benjamin Grosvenor’s Chicago debut

The pianist’s ability to easily bring out the melodic qualities, the shifts in mood and color from amidst the swirling pyrotechnics is remarkable for someone so young.
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An exhilarating, exhausting, extraordinary journey

One of the most moving and exhilarating experiences one can experience, the Brodsky Quartet performs the entire cycle of Shostakovich string quartets in the Perth International Arts Festival.
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From Leipzig to Finland in Manchester

A satisfying programme of familiar and unfamiliar works by the BBC Philarhomic under its Principal Guest Conductor. 
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Beethoven cello sonatas à la française

Phillips and Guy produce a French-accented rendering of three cello sonatas, favouring elegance and crystal clarity over overt romantics.
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Lieder Month

The delicate art of song

Undeservedly, Lieder recitals have a rarefied, old-lace aura that can scare off potential fans. Far from being remote and understated, their intimate nature closely connects singers with their audiences.

Follow my Lieder: Anna Lucia Richter

"Just jump in at the deep end!" Anna Lucia Richter talks about the world of song and how to approach it.

Follow my Lieder: Karen Cargill

Scottish mezzo Karen Cargill shares her thoughts on programming, musical partners and how the audience can approach Lieder recitals. 
Valery Gergiev

Opinion: A bang and a whimper

A flutter of the fingers, a whirl of the toothpick and he was gone... So does Valery Gergiev really deserve the criticism of his LSO tenure that's come his way?
Mozart in Bogotá

Bogotá es Mozart: A life-enhancing experience

An astonishing festival of Mozart in Bogotá reaches a life-enhancing climax for our editor as 1300 people squeeze into a church to experience the great composer's music.
Nielsen 150

A look at Carl Nielsen’s Maskarade

An exploration of Nielsen's Maskarade – rarely performed, but Denmark's national opera. 
film music article

Italian Cinema and the age of Nino Rota

Rota's film scores repeatedly found the right colour against which his directors' images could dazzle.
film music article

Silver screen scores in the concert hall

Orchestras increasingly perform concerts of film music and we were interested to discover how popular these were and if their approach to playing – and recording – such music is in any way different to standard concert repertoire.
film music article

Scoring for Spain: The film music of Alberto Iglesias

The cinematic world consists of two types: those who believe that continually recasting from a favoured coterie of actors can endanger suspension of disbelief, and those who do not. 

Opinion: A tale of three cities

Travel broadens the mind. It also opens the ears. For years, I was very happy to hear concerts in London… until I heard halls elsewhere.

Follow my Lieder: Venera Gimadieva

Hailed as ‘the new voice of Russia’ and the star of the Bolshoi Theatre, soprano Venera Gimadieva talks about singing song recitals as part of our Lieder series.

Follow my Lieder: Roderick Williams

Baritone Roderick Williams is a leading song recitalist, a regular at London's Wigmore Hall and makes his North American recital debut in February with a unique performance of Schubert’s Schwanengesang in New York's Park Avenue Armory. 
featured article

Trust me, I’m a critic!

In the fall-out from the ‘Dumpygate’ saga surrounding critical reaction to Glyndebourne’sDer Rosenkavalier, critic-bashing has enjoyed renewed vigour. Using the incident to promote a ‘Battle of Ideas’ debate on the value of music critics and the role they play piqued my interest in attending Saturday’s Free Stage event at the Barbican.
Sibelius 150

Sibelius’ Silence?

On 26th December, 1926, Walter Damrosch and the New York Symphonic Society gave the première of Tapiola, a tone poem depicting the forest spirit of the Kalevala. No-one knew thatTapiola would turn out to be the composer’s last major work...
Sibelius & Nielsen 150

Nordic twin peaks

An analysis of the Violin Concertos by Jean Sibelius and Carl Nielsen as we celebrate their 150th anniversaries. 
Film music article

Scoring psychological portraits: Herrmann and Hitchcock

Herrmann’s core philosophy of scoring film music was not to provide music to accompany the action of the film, but rather to paint a psychological portrait or arouse a compelling atmosphere.
film music article

Writing music for silent films

The 1925 silent version of The Phantom of the Opera was on the menu. Except this time it featured music from beginning to end.
film music article

British classical composers writing for film

When ‘talkies’ first started to spread their wings in the mid 1930s, a need for orchestral scores to accompany the increasing visual ambitions of the films was identified. So, who was to write this music?
Critics' poll

Chailly and the Berliner Philharmoniker: the critics’ choice

Which are the greatest orchestras and conductors according to the professional critics? Bachtrack's poll reveals the top ten! 

Follow my Lieder: Miah Persson

Swedish soprano Miah Persson talks about the world of lieder and the art of putting together a song recital. 

Follow my Lieder: Mark Padmore

Tenor Mark Padmore joins in our 'Follow my Lieder' series and discusses performing with surtitles and how new audiences can approach Lieder recitals. 
On Demand Service

Bachtrack On Demand

Stream live and archived events at the Royal Academy of Music
Search for archived (“On Demand”) or live broadcast events from world famous orchestras and venues such as the Berlin Philharmonic, the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Academy of Music and Met Opera.
Nielsen 150

Celebrating the Wind Music of Carl Nielsen

An exploration of the wind music – concertos and chamber music – of Carl Nielsen.
Sibelius 150

Sibelius' Symphonies 1 & 2: A violinist’s perspective

An overview of Sibelius' first two symphonies from the perspective of an orchestral violinist. 
Film music article

Korngold: Music for Hollywood

Korngold was one of the great, if not the greatest, composers for film and his style became synonymous with what came to be expected from a Hollywood film score.
film music article

Scoring Shakespeare: from silent film to modern adaptation

In the late 1890s, Shakespeare's plays became a popular source for films and remained one throughout the 20th century. Here's a brief journey through time and some of the most popular films.
film music article

Movie Music à la française

In the “A to Z” of classical French film composers of the past one hundred years, the names Ibert, Milhaud, the two Georges (Auric and Delerue) and les deux Maurices (Jaubert and Jarre) stand out.