Heuwell Tircuit is a composer, performer, and writer who was chief writer for Gramophone Japan and for 21 years a music reviewer for the San Francisco Chronicle. He wrote previously for Chicago American and the Asahi Evening News.
Performance standards were of their usual high order Sunday afternoon as Donato Cabrera conducted a concert of the San Francisco Symphony’s Youth Orchestra at Davies Symphony Hall. Even so, there were problems, notably with the programming, as well as with Cabrera’s concept of a classic warhorse.
The 50th of Hyperion’s cycles devoted to Romantic piano concertos features a generous heap of Tchaikovsky by pianist Stephen Hough, partnered by Osmo Vänskä and his Minnesota Orchestra. It’s quite an undertaking, with terrific sonics, though made during live performances.
Only six members of the 11 musicians who make up the Avedis ensemble played Sunday afternoon’s program at the Florence Gould Theater. The program, by the Stanford Woodwind Quintet and pianist Paul Hersh, was devoted largely to Baroque music, most of it in transcriptions.
On paper, last week’s San Francisco Symphony programs looked like meat and potatoes repertory, but Friday evening’s performance in Davies Symphony Hall turned out to be more like servings of Salzburger Nockerl with a well-made Kir Royale to wash it down.
I’d been hearing rumors about the American clarinetist Jon Manasse for years, but at this, my first hearing, his new Harmonia Mundi release containing two concertos confirmed all those rumors. He’s a paragon of musicality.
Two up-and-coming talents, the Macedonian pianist Simon Trpčeski and Russian conductor Vasily Petrenko, took over last week’s San Francisco Symphony subscription concerts, and in the process sounded like major stars of the future.
For its 74th season, Director Corey Jamason and the San Francisco Bach Choir and Baroque Orchestra programmed five highly unusual Bach compositions for their Sunday program in Calvary Presbyterian Church.