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!


Dance REVIEW
 Cal Performances  All Hail Martha Graham: A Company Alive and Well
January 31, 2014

The return of Martha Graham Dance Company to Zellerbach Hall featured dancers with strong Graham technique, style, and substance and repertory that was alive and juicy.

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Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra REVIEW
 San Francisco Symphony  Standard to Gold Standard: When the Russians Ravish
January 30, 2014

At the S.F. Symphony program staples are elevated — especially a concussive, ravishing, startling and altogether convincing Rachmaninov Rhapsody when performed by Daniil Trifonov.

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Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra REVIEW
   Canadian Brass Adds Shine to Choral Project of San Jose
January 28, 2014

The Choral Project of San Jose invited the Canadian Brass to share a concert, turning it into a multiple-ovation joyfest.

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Opera REVIEW
 Lamplighters Music Theatre  Singing Praises: Fresh, Lively, <em>Die Fledermaus</em>
January 26, 2014

The Lamplighters Die Fledermaus is fresh and lively, crisply paced by the Conductor George Cleve and Director Barbara Heroux, showcasing the singing, and this cast was on top of its game.

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Chamber Orchestra/Orchestra REVIEW
   One Pair of Shoes: Conductor and Violinist Bows Beethoven
January 26, 2014

The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, with Pinchas Zukerman as conductor and violin soloist, goes all-Beethoven in its San Francisco outing, to admirable effect.

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Choral REVIEW
 American Bach Soloists  Much to Rejoice: American Bach Soloists
January 26, 2014

Again showing its unity of purpose and overall grace, the American Bach Soloists perform a concert of rejoice and celebration, while praising seven of its longtime members.

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Choral REVIEW
 Green Music Center   <em>Theodora</em> Ravishes the Senses
January 25, 2014

Theodora (1749), the Handel oratorio, returned to Weill Hall to transcendent effect.

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Chamber Music REVIEW
 SF Jazz   Close Relations: Cypress String Quartet
January 25, 2014

The Cypress String Quartet presents works by Slavic and British composers in a refreshing program at the SFJazz Center.

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Chamber Music REVIEW
 Stanford Live  Takács Doubles Down for Bartók Cycle
January 25, 2014

In a double program the Takács Quartet took on all six string quartets by Béla Bartók, a canon in modern music that couldn't be more intimidating, gnarly, and downright difficult.

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Recital REVIEW
 Cal Performances  Brahms in the 21st Century
January 23, 2014

In the first of two Cal Performances recitals, pianist Emmanuel Ax, with mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter, gave a wide-ranging account of Brahms’ lieder, accompanied by two world premiere works.

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