If you're not yet in full celebration of the San Francisco Symphony's 100-year existence, its luxurious hardback (remember those?), Music for a City, Music for the World, published for the opening of the centennial season in September, will certainly put you in t
When the curtain came down for the final time Sunday, cutting an eight-minute standing ovation short in the overcrowded War Memorial Opera House, it seemed an insufficient response to three superb cycles of Wagner's Ring of the Nibelung.
The first time I conducted the LSO [London Symphony Orchestra], it was for a rehearsal, and I had about two minutes to decide whether or not I wanted to step in. The walk to the podium felt not unlike the "March to the Scaffold" in Berlioz's Symphonie fantastique.
Similar in grandeur and majesty, Beethoven's Ninth Symphony and Missa solemnis (Solemn Mass), both from 1824, are virtually at opposite ends of the composer's hit parade. The Ninth is performed constantly around the world, but the Missa comes along once or twice in an orchestra's lifetime.
While the San Francisco Symphony is winding up its tour of Europe, the Sonos Handbell Ensemble is preparing to leave for the Estonian capital of Tallinn to participate in the June 25-29 Bell Arts International
Just when we are beginning to comprehend cloud computing, here comes cloud singing. That, at least, is what I think Ragnar Bohlin called what happened during the San Francisco Symphony Chorus concert he conducted at Davies Symphony Hall on Sunday.
There are bigger spectator sports, but none with more participants than choral singing. Surprising but true: more Americans sing in choruses, chorales, choirs, glee clubs and other vocal groups — both professional and amateur — than engage in football, baseball, tennis, even Greco-Roman wrestling.
Chorus America is holding its 34th annual convention in the city, June 8-11, hosted by the San Francisco Girls Chorus and Chanticleer. SFGC, along with the International Orange Chorale of San Francisco, is among winners of the 2011 Chorus America/ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming; Chanticleer and Volti received the award before.
One of Leonard Bernstein's many accomplishments was to bring Gustav Mahler to the attention of American audiences in the 1960s, five decades after the death of his predecessor at the New York Philharmonic. And yet, despite Bernstein's performances and recordings of those challenging masterpieces, Mahler's popularity had its ups and downs.