Curious Listener: Rob Bookstein wrote a pithy email describing Melvyn Tan's concert to his friend and La Jolla Music Society Board member, Katherine Kennedy. It morphed into this post. Thank you, Rob!
Rob Bookstein: I decided to go to the Dec. 10th concert mostly because of Sonata No. 3. I think this is one of the most incredible piano pieces ever written. It is viciously difficult, and you don't hear it often. Afterwards I checked iTunes and realized I didn't have a [...]
Did you know that only a handful, 15 - 50, pianists in the world play Bach well? Who says? Well, since we don't want to get anyone into trouble, let's just say it is an anonymous source that I tend to agree with. For me, the same is true for violinists. Their Bach playing bores me. I greatly prefer Beethoven. I always assumed it was the composition; but, I have a new theory after hearing Midori play Bach last Friday. Perhaps I simply have not heard Bach played very well in the past. O [...]
I planned ahead and got tickets to the Staatskapelle Berlin - the Berlin opera orchestra normally directed by Daniel Barenboim - on Wednesday, November 25th, during a trip to Germany to visit relatives. What an amazing experience!
It was 26.6F (-3C) which doesn't seem so cold to my Chicago mindset, but felt awful at the time. We were able to ignore the cold by beginning the evening outside the concert hall at the best Christmas market in Berlin. It had lovely white tents d [...]
Last week's post was about the false hope of the Mozart Effect which states that simply listening to Mozart makes you smarter. Nope, it isn't that easy. But, new research does show a correlation between brain development and music education. While there has been hyperbole in the past, the latest research is factual and compelling.
It is also complicated. Here is my layman's view along with references if you care to [...]
Does listening to music make us smarter? I want to scream, "Yes! Yes! Yes!" because I would love to justify more spending on music; but after an admittedly short internet search, I'm convinced that the answer is, "Sort of, maybe, and we need to do more research."
Unfortunately, there has been false information used to justify spending money, both public and private, on music for kids; and, as passionate as I am about music, the engineer in me cannot support misi [...]
This is a wacky video that induced a big ole wide-eyed grin on my face; so I just have to show it to you, my dear readers. It is only 1:37 minutes long, and you need only watch the first 56 seconds to see the best of it. Of course, if you like latin music as much as I do, you'll watch the whole thing and then disseminate it further, as I am doing now.
According to Wikipedia, the band, Santana, pioneered rock, salsa and jazz fusion. Then, Michael Akkerman added Laurel [...]
While I knew that music could sweep me away, making me lose myself and my troubles in the emotion created by the composer, I didn't realize that it could do this for people in the darkest of circumstances. But, according to this holocaust survivor, music can and did.
When I started watching this video from my friend, David Kleinfeld, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the San Diego Opera, I never thought I would view the video to the end.  [...]
I just had to laugh while reading the Oct 30 blog post, "Precious Viola Moment", by Charles Noble, a viola player in the Oregon Symphony. He writes of, "one of those rare moments that is hilarious" that happened earlier in the evening during a performance. A musician shouted at the end of an especially exhilarating section of music.
I, like Charles, think this is funny and fun. Musicians shouting in enthusiasm aren't a rare ex [...]
My husband and I recently became friends with a couple in Berlin who love classical music and opera as we do. They took us to a concert in Kunsthaus Tacheles. The theatre only holds about 200 seats; but it was full - not bad for a classical music concert in the middle of the week. More surprising, it was full of people who are young - not just young at heart!
Why? Was it simply the low ticket price of approximately $20? I don't think so although I'm sure price&nb [...]
Here's a shout out to the mariachi band of the Community Music Center (CMC). They serenaded the staff and VIP guests at the ribbon cutting ceremony of the first San Diego office of Mutual of Omaha Bank. The President, Butch Dorian, said, "We wanted to highlight our commitment to kids." He has five of them himself, so he's certainly committed!
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