boulezian is a English-speaking blog specialized in the field of classical music and opera. As such, boulezian is a qualified source of soclassiq, like Planet Hugill or The Classical Review and many others. The oldest article indexed by soclassiq is dated 2017-07-11. Since then, a total of 476 articles have been written and published by boulezian.
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With 29 articles published in the last 90 days, boulezian is currently a not very active news source. "Not very active" does not mean that boulezian is less interesting than another more prolific source. Each blog follows a specific editorial line, publishing according to its own rhythm.
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The last article in boulezian, "Die Zauberflöte, Royal Opera, 15 September 2021", is dated 2021-09-23. By 2020, this source had published 107 articles (52 since the beginning of 2021). Over the past 12 months, boulezian has published an average of 5 articles per month.
boulezian in the last 36 months
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Royal Opera House Tamino – Bernard Richter Pamina – Salome Jicia Papageno – Huw Montague Rendall Queen of the Night – Brenda Rae Sarastro – Krzysztof Baczyk Monostatos – Michael Colvin Papagena – Haegee Lee Speaker – Jochen Schmeckenbecher Three Ladies – Alexandra Lowe, Hanna Hipp, Stephanie Wake-Edwards Two Priests – Harry Nicoll, Donald Maxwell Two Armoured Men – Alan Pingarrón, James Platt Three Boys – Rafael Flutter, Benjamin Jardim, Victor Wiggin David McVicar (director)Dan Dooner (revival director)John Macfarlane (designs)Paule Constable (lighting)Leah Hausman, Angelo Smimmo (movement) Royal Opera Chorus (chorus director: William Spaulding) Orchestra of the Royal Opera House Hartmut Haenchen (conductor) Images: Bill Cooper. (C) ROH 2021 David McVicar’s 2003 Magic Flute production is really starting to look—more to the point, feel—its age. When fresh and new, especially when conducted by Colin Davis, it had a winning sense of theatrical wonder. If it never […]
Luigi Nono was many things: composer, human being, quite often both. Nono was an artist of burning political commitment, never more so than in his agitprop opera Intolleranza 1960, also to be heard at this year’s Salzburg Festival. He was a modernist, an avant gardist, a serialist. At least as important as those qualities, however, he was Venetian and a traveller, both personally and in his music: to, from, and around the city of his birth (1924), death (1990), and much of his life in between. Take the ravishingly beautiful yet equally instructive late documentary from 1988, Archipel Luigi Nono, made when Nono was at work on La lontananza nostalgica utopica futura. Olivier Mille interviews the composer about his work while the pair walk around the city. No one could doubt that Nono was both utterly at home yet capable of the considered distance of an inquisitive visitor, ever alert […]
Musikfest Berlin (2): Stefanovich/MCO/Benjamin - Knussen, Purcell, Stravinsky, and Benjamin, 2 September 2021
Philharmonie Knussen: The Way to Castle Yonder, op.21a Purcell, arr. Benjamin: Three Consorts (German premiere) Stravinsky: Movements Benjamin: Concerto for Orchestra (German premiere) Stravinsky: Pulcinella Suite Tamara Stefanovich (piano)Mahler Chamber Orchestra George Benjamin (conductor) Images: Astrid Ackermann In this concert George Benjamin, the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, and Tamara Stefanovich paid tribute to a number of influences on and/or connections with Benjamin’s music, as well as presenting two new works, which had had their first performances a few days earlier at the Proms. Oliver Knussen, featured both as himself, in The Way to Castle Yonder—as well as in Stefanovich’s solo encore—and as dedicatee of Benjamin’s Concerto for Orchestra would surely have approved of the programming, which also took in Purcell and Stravinsky. I imagine Pierre Boulez, Benjamin’s friend, mentor, and fellow Messiaen pupil, would have done too. Knussen’s ‘pot-pourri’ from his opera […]
Humanist Heroism Unveiling of the Beethoven monument, Bonn, in 1845. Liszt ensured that the project succeeded, contributing money, advocacy, performances, and his own music. In his Third Symphony, Beethoven threw down the gauntlet: to himself, to contemporaries and to successors in the 19th and even 20th centuries. The scale and public quality of its utterance seem, like the composer’s visage in glowering, ineffably human portraits, to speak of and with something new: Beethoven’s heroic voice. In the sonata-form first movement, generative simplicity and development of unprecedented length and complexity prove two sides of the same coin. Its opening E flat major triad, heard first vertically then horizontally, gives the appearance of organic necessity in informing all that is to come; so too does its subsequent – consequent? – turning away: E flat–D–C sharp. This music is in a dramatic, persistent state of becoming as […]
In Beethoven’s wake, composers, especially in the Austro-German tradition, asked themselves what should become of forms and genres he had seemingly taken to their ultimate, foremost among them the sonata and symphony. Allied to increasing interest, born of literary Romanticism, in the idea of the ‘fragment’ – for Friedrich Schlegel, ‘a small work of art, complete in itself and separated from its surrounding world, like a hedgehog’ – such pressure led in several directions: rejuvenation and rejection of old forms only two possible polarities. We shall hear in this programme Schumann wrestle with such questions; Chopin take, to Schumann’s bemusement, a very different sonata path; and much territory both between and beyond. ‘For ladies’ Writing in 1843, Schumann argued that ‘difficulties in form and content’ had prevented much of his music from gaining greater public esteem. The C major Arabeske, composed over his Vienna winter of 1838–9, had […]
Staatsoper Unter den LindenSchumann: Symphony no.1 in B-flat major, op.38, ‘Spring’ Piano Concerto in A minor, op.54 Symphony no.2 in C major, op.61 Martha Argerich (piano) Staatskapelle Berlin Daniel Barenboim (conductor) There are worse ways to celebrate one’s birthday than to hear Martha Argerich, the Staatskapelle Berlin, and Daniel Barenboim in an all-Schumann concert. In truth, there are few, if any, better. Tastes vary, of course; there is notoriously no account for them. Taste, a merely personal matter, aside, though, there are no musicians alive any reasonable listener would esteem in this music. What a treat, moreover, to have Barenboim defiantly—whether in the face of endemic ‘period’ talk or pandemic viral contagion—deploy a full-scale symphony orchestra, from sixteen first violins down to eight double basses, on the Staatsoper stage. An echt-Romantic horn call, full of expectancy, repeated by full orchestra heralded the SpringSymphony. This introduction had such depth of […]
PhilharmonieAnn Cleare: mire/…/veins (2013); ore (2016); Fossil Lights (2020-21, world premiere); the physics of fog, swirling (2018-19); on magnetic fields (2011-12) Enno Poppe: Prozession (2015-20) Hannah Weirich (violin) Sara Cubarsi (violin) Michele Marelli (clarinet) Ensemble Musikfabrik Aaron Cassidy, Enno Poppe (conductors) Images: Astrid Ackermann For my final visit to this year’s Musikfest Berlin: two concerts, morning and afternoon, from Ensemble Musikfabrik. The first was devoted to the music of Ann Cleare, the two ensemble pieces conducted at frighteningly short notice by Aaron Cassidy; the second, conducted by the composer, was devoted to Enno Poppe’s Prozession, begun in 2015, then set aside after eight minutes’ worth of music, to be resumed during lockdown and extended to about fifty in total. The morning’s Ann Cleare portrait suggested a communicative interest, variety notwithstanding, in instrumental sound as sculpted material. mire/…/veins for wind quintet imparted, from its muted brass opening, a […]
Philharmonie Stravinsky: Symphonies of Wind Instruments Stravinsky: Abraham and Isaac Stravinsky: Concerto for piano and wind instruments Stravinsky: Variations for Orchestra (Aldous Huxley in memoriam) Hindemith: Symphony: Mathis der Maler Tamara Stefanovich (piano)Georg Nigl (baritone)Berlin Radio Symphony OrchestraVladimir Jurowski (conductor) Images: Peter Meisel A darkened hall, monochrome lighting, considerable distance between conductor and orchestra (strings absent): Symphonies of Wind Instruments, given in its superior, 1920 version, looked as well as sounded hieratic. It was as precise as it was hieratic, only adding to the aggression that lies only just beneath the surface, presaging so much neoclassical Stravinsky as well as echoing the Russian ballets. Strange flute solos recalled the Rite in particular. Combinations of instruments surprised, enchanted, and drove Stravinsky’s quasi-liturgy. In its intense drama of sounds, it looked forward to Birtwistle and others. And yet, Vladimir Jurowski was equally alert to the crucial role […]
Musikfest Berlin (1) - Fleming/Concertgebouw/Harding - Stravinsky, Messiaen, and Debussy, 31 August 2021
Philharmonie Stravinsky: Agon Messiaen: Poèmes pour Mi Debussy: La Mer Renée Fleming (soprano)Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Daniel Harding (conductor) Image: Astrid Ackermann Size is not everything, yet to hear—and even to see—my largest orchestra for over eighteen months was certainly not nothing. With a string section extending from sixteen first violins to eight double basses, and plentiful wind, percussion, even a mandolin, this was a treat in itself, a sign, dare we hope, of progress in our return to concert life. That the orchestra in question was the Concertgebouw was a distinct advantage too, as was Daniel Harding’s mouth-watering programme of Stravinsky, Messiaen, and Debussy. Harding’s direction of the orchestra in Stravinsky’s Agon was insistent and precise, likewise the Concertgebouw’s response. Manhattan traffic came to Berlin’s Philharmonie for one night only. The three pas-de-quatre, single, double, and triple increased in their […]
Images: Monika RittershausŒdipe (Leigh Melrose), Jocaste (Karolina Gumos), Laïos (Christoph Späth) Œdipe – Leigh Melrose Tirésias – Jens Larsen Créon – Joachum Goltz High Priest – Vazgen Gazaryan Night Watchman – Shavleg Armasi Shepherd – Johannes Dunz Laïos – Christoph Späth Jocaste – Karolina Gumos Sphinx – Katarina Bradić Antigone – Mirka Wagner Mérope – Susan Zarrabi Evgeny Titov (director)Rufus Didwiszus, Charlotte Spichalsky (set designs)Eva Dessecker (costumes)Ulrich Lenz (dramaturgy) Choir of the Komische Oper Berlin (chorus director: David Cavelius) Vocalconsort Berlin Children’s Choir of the Komische Oper Berlin (chorus director: Dagmar Fiebach) Orchestra of the Komische Oper Berlin Ainārs Rubikis (conductor) Tirésias (Jens Larsen), Œdipe, Jocaste Art returns in various ways. There is, nor should there be, no one-size-fits-all. In London, the Royal Opera, largely silent during the days of endless lockdown and occasional reprieve, lightened our […]