Web Extra: Classical Music

Soprano Susanna Phillips has already made a name for herself, debuting this season at the Metropolitan Opera, the Dallas Opera and the Boston Lyric Opera. On Thursday she gave a splendid recital of well-known songs by Mendelssohn, Faure, Strauss, Barber and Messiaen at the Kennedy Center Terrace ...
 
See if you can keep this straight. Strephon (an Arcadian shepherd) is the son of Iolanthe (a wayward fairy) and the Lord Chancellor (a high-born mortal). Strephon, therefore, is part fairy (the top half) and part mortal (the bottom half). Phyllis (a shepherdess) loves Strephon. Strephon loves Phy...
 
The Academy of Ancient Music gave a live demonstration of its new recording of Bach's Brandenburg Concertos at George Mason's Center for the Arts on Sunday afternoon. True to historically informed performance practice, the British ensemble assigned one player to each part, reflecting Music Direct...
 
The Cantate Chamber Singers and an excellent group of vocal soloists brought rarely heard music by Handel to Bethesda on Friday at St. John's Norwood Parish, performing the three-hour-long "Brockes Passion." . The work might as well have been an opera, despite its intensely soul-wrenching biblica...
 
In tough economic times, when concertgoing could be considered a frivolous expense, it's reassuring that true musical bargains can still be found. Tickets for the three-day Schubert, Schubert and Schubert festival were $5 per concert. No surprise, then, that Georgetown University's Gaston Hall wa...
 
Canadian violinist Lara St. John brought a heavy meal to the Barns At Wolf Trap last Friday evening and devoured it before our eyes. Playing with absolute security, and entirely from memory, she delivered the Beethoven 3d and Bartok 2d sonatas, the Schönberg Phantasy, a world premiere by Matthew ...
 
Shostakovich's music opened the Pro Musica Hebraica-sponsored recital by the Biava Quartet at the Terrace Theater on Thursday. It was his Fourth String Quartet, infused with Russian-Jewish folk music and a notably gentler score than some of his other, anguished works in that form. The other four...
 
If the idea of a concert by an all-cello octet sounds like a study in monotony, the Amsterdam Cello Octet's program at Dumbarton Church on Saturday banished any such notion. Variety seemed the ruling principle, with even a trio of Latin-flavored compositions played up for their distinct and contr...
 
As a refreshing change from the Washington Chorus's accustomed concert format, their music director, Julian Wachner, presented an evening at the Atlas Performing Arts Center on Wednesday that focused on music by, and conversations with, a single composer -- Wachner's longtime friend and colleague...
 
The Verdehr Trio made one of its regular semiyearly visits to the Phillips Collection on Sunday bringing with it two of the almost 200 pieces for violin, clarinet and piano it's commissioned over the years, one, a world's premiere, and both, attractive, coherent and entertaining.
 
What a treat for Bel Cantanti Opera's young singers: doing "Don Pasquale" with François Loup, a top-notch buffo bass-baritone. And what a treat for the audience on Sunday afternoon at the Olney Theater Center for the Arts: Loup also stage-directed, creating a fast-moving blend of visual fun and d...
 
The new music adventurers of the Mobtown Modern series presented a nearly complete performance of Luciano Berio's "Sequenzas" on Tuesday night at Baltimore's Contemporary Museum. The frequency of opportunities to hear all of these modern etudes for solo instruments in one sitting is likely in...
 
At first glance, the saxophone quartet Prism and the instrumental ensemble Music From China would seem to be strange bedfellows. After all, how compatible can the urbane, brash, smoky, jazzy sax and the delicate, reedy voices of a two-string fiddle (an instrument in the huqin family), a flat-bodi...
 
Every seat was filled for Friday's splendid concert by the IBIS Chamber Music Society at Lyon Park Community Center in Clarendon. IBIS is a group formed by musicians from the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra, the National Symphony Orchestra and the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra. Friday's pe...
 
William Bolcom can be a serious and intense composer of vocal music. Thank goodness he was neither at the Mansion at Strathmore on Thursday night, because when Bolcom has fun, the audience has an absolutely marvelous time.
 
Daniel Bernard Roumain's Hip-Hop Studies & Etudes for Solo Piano can't actually be played by a single pianist -- but Jade Simmons found a way.
 
Master Chorale of Washington presented a fine program of American a cappella music on Sunday afternoon at National Presbyterian Church. The reduced roster of 40-some singers, about a third of the full membership, produced the clean, balanced sound of an excellent and disciplined collegiate choral...
 
The Dumbarton Concerts series has supported and encouraged local wunderkind Tudor Dominik Maican (b. 1988) in a big way, commissioning four chamber works from him, all premiered by world-class ensembles on its series.
 
Trio con Brio Copenhagen, a piano trio formed in Vienna in 1999, gave a mostly Mendelssohn concert at the Library of Congress on Wednesday night. At a pre-concert lecture, preeminent Mendelssohn scholar R. Larry Todd described the composer as "extremely versatile" in absorbing new styles, happy to...
 
Jazz pianist and singer-songwriter Patricia Barber often brings a certain physicality and willfulness to her performances, and that certainly was the case at the Kennedy Center Terrace Theater on Friday night.
 
It is never a good sign when classical musicians walk onstage wearing earplugs. Several did Friday night at Strathmore, when tap dancer Savion Glover put on a noisy show with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.
 
Midway through a grueling 10-week, 47-concert U.S. tour, the Dublin Philharmonic found itself having to patch together a program for its Schlesinger Concert Hall appearance Friday. It turned out that the scheduled soloist, soprano Celine Byrne, was snowbound in Dublin. But Irish pianist Peter Tui...
 
It's not easy, but it is possible for performers to adjust their ensemble to the peculiarities of the National Gallery's West Garden Court acoustics. It's work, however, and work that cellist Josef Feigelson and pianist Peep Lassmann seem not to have undertaken in preparing for their concert on S...
 

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