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 Orchestra/Orchestra REVIEW
 Elevate Ensemble  Elevate Ensemble and the Return of the Harpsichord
February 29, 2016
Harpsichordist Derek Tam joined the group in three pieces all composed in 2016. More about Elevate Ensemble »
Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra REVIEW
 San Francisco Symphony  Oddities and a Premiere Distinguish Russian National Orchestra’s Visit
February 24, 2016
In between the Russian warhorses, some unpredictable and finely-played music, and an orchestra in close harmony with its conductor. More about San Francisco Symphony »
Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra REVIEW
 San Francisco Symphony  Denève Brings S.F. Symphony to a French Soundgasm
February 23, 2016
The French conductor brought a Glimmer of new music to the San Francisco Symphony’s series of subscription concerts. More about San Francisco Symphony »
Opera REVIEW
 West Bay Opera  Well-Cast <em>Onegin</em> Succeeds at West Bay Opera
February 23, 2016
With several standout performances by the leads, West Bay Opera’s gamble on Russian opera pays handsome dividends. More about West Bay Opera »
Dance REVIEW
 San Francisco Ballet  Tomasson’s <em>Swan Lake</em> Captivates, Despite Conundrums
February 23, 2016
The production, choreographed by the artistic director in 2009, returns to the War Memorial Opera House after a six-year absence. More about San Francisco Ballet »
Opera REVIEW
 Opera Parallèle  <em>Champion</em> Delivers Emotional TKO
February 22, 2016
The “opera in jazz” follows the life of aging, dementia-scarred prize fighter Emile Griffith. More about Opera Parallèle »
Choral REVIEW
 San Francisco Symphony  S.F. Symphony Chorus: Thinking Outside the Box
February 22, 2016
The S.F. Symphony Chorus put on an unhip but engaging performance in SoundBox’s third program of the season. More about San Francisco Symphony »
Dance REVIEW
 Silicon Valley Ballet  Silicon Valley Ballet’s Prismatic Return From Spain
February 22, 2016
The company showed plenty of confidence in its first program after returning from a tour of Spain. More about Silicon Valley Ballet »
Chamber Music REVIEW
 eighth blackbird: Hand Eye  eighth blackbird’s Valentine to New Music Lovers
February 16, 2016
The ensemble pulled together a diverse group of pieces for its program at Berkeley’s Hertz Hall. More about eighth blackbird: Hand Eye »
Chamber Music REVIEW
 Cypress String Quartet  Cypress Quartet: Brahms by Osmosis
February 16, 2016
With friends Barry Shiffman and Zuill Bailey, Cypress Quartet gave fluid performances of Brahms’ sextets. More about Cypress String Quartet »