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!


Recital REVIEW
 San Francisco Opera  S.F. Opera Lab Opens with a (Literally) Animated Winterreise
March 15, 2016

William Kentridge’s animated art was paired with Matthias Goerne’s supremely lyrical presentation of Schubert’s last song cycle.

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Dance REVIEW
 Yerba Buena Center for the Arts  A True Wartime Tale From Bill T. Jones
March 14, 2016

A true story of a 19-year-old resisting the Nazis is the latest, powerful addition to Bill T. Jones’ dances exploring racism and social injustice.

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Recital REVIEW
 San Francisco Performances  Manuel Barrueco Works Wonders with Old Favorites
March 14, 2016
The guitarist delivered masterful renderings of J.S. Bach's Chaconne and a selection of Latin favorites. More about San Francisco Performances »
Chamber Music REVIEW
 Cypress String Quartet  Cypress Quartet Comes Full Circle for Final “Call and Response”
March 12, 2016
The ensemble will be missed for their sensible interpretations and fine ensemble playing. More about Cypress String Quartet »
Recital REVIEW
 Center for New Music  Pianist Vicky Chow Explores the Hard Edge of Technology
March 10, 2016
In her San Francisco debut, Vicky Chow showcased works that confronted difficult issues of technology and politics. More about Center for New Music »
Recital REVIEW
 Other Minds  Meredith Monk’s Otherworldy Vocalism at Other Minds
March 9, 2016

The extraordinary music Monk creates, largely with her own voice, still has the power to amaze, as a recital drawn from her long career showed.

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Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra REVIEW
 San Francisco Symphony  Joshua Bell Needs a Baton to Go with His Bow
March 9, 2016

The Academy of St. Martin in the Fields fielded a great soloist on Sunday, but missed a conductor’s attention.

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Recital REVIEW
 Center for New Music  Listening In On Ambient Music’s “Beautiful Blandness”
March 8, 2016

Composer Catherine Lamb creates a composition/soundscape that is both suggestive and familiar.

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Chamber Music REVIEW
 San Francisco Performances  JACK Quartet Goes Low-Tech, With High-Impact Results
March 8, 2016

The lights were more than dimmed at S.F. Performances’ inaugural PIVOT program at the Strand Theater. They were turned off, and they stayed off for the concert’s duration.

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Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra REVIEW
 San Francisco Symphony  Maria João Pires’ Long-Overdue Bay Area Debut
March 2, 2016

: No more excuses if you haven’t heard the work of this brilliant Portuguese pianist.

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