Classical Music Reviews

Every week, our professional critics attend concerts throughout the Bay Area to let you know what went well...and occasionally what didn't. Let their insights enrich your musical experiences, and feel free to share your own views!


Chamber Music Review
October 30, 2011

One of America’s best early-music ensembles combines forces with a sterling but hard-to-watch countertenor.

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Opera Review
October 30, 2011

Holding nothing back in cast strength and performance quality, West Edge Opera mounts an admirable production of Richard Strauss’ Ariadne auf Naxos.

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Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra Review
October 29, 2011

The Alaskan mezzo, backed by Philharmonia Baroque, launches brilliant vocal fireworks that burst into full bloom.

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Recital Review
October 29, 2011

The ravishing Beijing-born classical guitarist plays the Spanish classics, tosses off some Bach and Chopin, and swings with works by Brazilian composers.

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Recital Review
October 29, 2011

A smartly laid out program of violin works, old and new, dexterously conveyed emotion while it purveyed lofty musical ideas.

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CD Review
October 28, 2011

You probably haven't heard the music on these two CDs, but the high quality of the compositions and the playing will make you sit up and pay attention.

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Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra Review
October 27, 2011

Alan Gilbert led the S.F. Symphony in a brief concert that was long on good graces, establishing close and effortless contact with the orchestra, and polishing off the two similar classics with panache.

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Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra Review
October 27, 2011

The Berkeley Symphony, in its third season under Joana Carneiro, continues to celebrate young talent in a concert that was a victory for composer, performers, and audience.

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Recital Review
October 27, 2011

A recital by Baritone Simon Keenlyside offers a handsome voice and an audience that leaves smiling at the lovable character with a rare gift for song.

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Opera Review
October 26, 2011

Art at its finest not only engages the mind and heart, but also impels us to sink deeper into the truths of who we are. Desdemona a collaboration by Toni Morrison, Rokia Traoré, and Peter Sellars that runs at UC Berkeley’s Zellerbach Playhouse through Oct. 29, demands to be seen.

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