Music Articles

Every week, our writers take an in‐depth look at an artist, program or topic of interest to us. Spend some time with this week's classical music feature, or scroll through the extensive SFCV archive for insights in many music topics.


Feature Article
March 3, 2009

It is a season for anniversaries at Berkeley Opera. This year is the company’s 30th season, which will be celebrated at a star-studded gala on March 29, featuring soprano Ruth Ann Swenson. Their current production of Jacques Offenbach’s Tales of Hoffmann, at the Julia Morgan Center for the Arts in Berkeley through March 8, marks the 10th anniversary of the company’s premiere of librettist David Scott Marley’s adaptation of that work.

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Feature Article
March 3, 2009

Oakland, long recognized as one of the most ethnically diverse cities in the United States, is a microcosm of the new face of America. For Oakland's arts organizations to remain relevant to the city's multicultural population, they must pioneer new forms of outreach and expression. The Oakland East Bay Symphony (OEBS) shines as a model of how an orchestra can thrive by tuning its programming to present and future realities.

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Feature Article
February 17, 2009

Who is Sofia Gubaidulina? Audiences unfamiliar with the name (pronounced goo-bye-DOO-lee-nah) may be surprised to learn that she is one of the most distinctive, highly regarded composers in the world today.

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Feature Article
February 10, 2009

The New Year’s parade may be over, but San Francisco has not finished ringing in the year of the ox. On Sunday, the San Francisco Symphony continued the celebration with a Chinese New Year concert, followed by a reception with Chinese dancing, food, and other festivities. The program featured the acclaimed Chinese violinist Siqing Lu, as well as the Crystal Choir and Melody of China, an ensemble of traditional Chinese instruments.

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Kids & Families Feature
February 3, 2009

Of all the underrated genius-level composers of the 19th century, none is more undeserving of his second-tier status than Felix Mendelssohn, whose bicentennial occurs this Tuesday, February 3. Few displayed a more natural or more all-encompassing talent than he, and from a remarkably early age, at that. In a way, he was the Mozart of the Romantic age.

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Feature Article
January 20, 2009

The American Bach Soloists, a charter member of the Bay Area’s thriving early music community, turns 20 this season. Through the years its core membership has been remarkably stable, so you understand why Artistic Director Jeffrey Thomas refers to it as a kind of extended family.It's also an unusual chamber ensemble in that many of its greatest successes have come in performing larger works, such as J.S.

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Feature Article
January 13, 2009

It's rare that an interesting new opera simply appears, without the fanfare of commissions and publicity surrounding the premiere. Yet composer Allen Shearer's second opera, The Dawn Makers, is poised to do just that, when it debuts at San Francisco's Herbst Theatre on Feb. 4, conducted by J. Karla Lemon, directed by Brian Staufenbiel, and produced by Composers, Inc.

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Feature Article
January 6, 2009

What better way to start the new year than by looking back at half a century in the life of one of our most distinguished musicians?

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