Friday, July 30, 2010

Tanglewood July 30-August 1, 2010

Here's how the BSO Tanglewood website describes this weekend's offerings. Ron Della Chiesa has the "pre-game show" beginning 1/2 hour before each scheduled concert time. All is available at

"All-Russian Program with Charles Dutoit 
Friday, July 30, 8:30PM

At 8:30 p.m. in the Shed, the Boston Symphony Orchestra is joined by longtime BSO guest conductor and 1959 TMC Fellow Charles Dutoit as well as Russian pianist Kirill Gerstein for a program of Russian concert favorites. Tchaikovsky's ever-popular Piano Concerto No. 1—which showcases the skills of Mr. Gerstein, the recent winner of the Gilmore Artist Award—shares the first half of the concert with the overture to Glinka's Ruslan and Ludmila. After intermission, Maestro Dutoit and the BSO perform a suite from Prokofiev's Romeo and Juliet.

Berg, Strauss, & Mahler Program 
Saturday, July 31, 8:30PM

The BSO welcomes conductor Juanjo Mena at 8:30 p.m. in the Shed for a program of Berg's ambitious Three Pieces for Orchestra, Strauss's autumnal Four Last Songs with soprano Hei-Kyung Hong, and Mahler's Symphony No. 4, the most delicate of his nine completed works in the form. Maestro Mena is Principal Guest Conductor of Norway's Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra and Chief Guest Conductor at the Teatro Carlo Felice in Genoa, and was recently appointed Chief Conductor of the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, succeeding Gianandrea Noseda in September 2011. He makes his BSO debut with this program.

Yo-Yo Ma Returns to Tanglewood 
Sunday, August 1, 2:30PM

Universally acclaimed cellist Yo-Yo Ma returns to Tanglewood and shares the stage with the BSO at 2:30 p.m. in the Shed for a performance of Elgar's tragic, ultra-Romantic Cello Concerto in a performance led once again by Maestro Dutoit. Also on the program are Sibelius's folk-inspired, nationalistic Karelia Suite and Mussorgsky's dazzling orchestral showpiece Pictures at an Exhibition, as orchestrated by Ravel."


Friday, July 23, 2010

Tanglewood July 23-25, 2010

Here's what the BSO says on their Tanglewood page.

"Mozart, Brahms and Strauss!

Mozart's The Abduction from the Seraglio
Friday, July 23, 8:30PM

Canadian Opera Company Music Director Johannes Debus joins the BSO to conduct a concert performance of Mozart's The Abduction from the Seraglio, featuring Tanglewood Music Center Vocal Fellows and a professional cast that includes sopranos Lisette Oropesa and Ashley Emerson, tenors Eric Cutler and Anthony Stevenson, and bass Morris Robinson. Acclaimed Boston actor Will LeBow will narrate. Though Mozart's opera, written in the style of the Singspiel, uses spoken dialogue rather than recitative to develop the plot, it also contains some of the composer's most brilliant and challenging sung numbers, full of coloratura passages and other vocal fireworks.

All-Brahms Program
Saturday, July 24, 8:30PM

Guest conductor Herbert Blomstedt takes to the Tanglewood podium at 8:30 p.m. in the Shed, leading an all-Brahms program that features the composer's Symphony No. 2 and the Piano Concerto No. 1, with soloist Gilles Vonsattel. The Piano Concerto No. 1, completed in 1858, was originally composed in 1854 as a sonata for two pianos and nearly became his first symphony before going through a number of revisions and finally arriving at its present state. Conversely, Brahms rapidly wrote his Symphony No. 2 in a single summer in 1877.
Regrettably, Peter Serkin is ill and has been forced to withdraw from this Saturday's performance of the Brahms Piano Concerto No. 1. We are delighted that the young Swiss-American pianist, Gilles Vonsattel, will be replacing him.

All-Strauss Program
Sunday, July 25, 2:30PM

Houston Symphony Music Director Hans Graf will lead the BSO in a showcase of waltzes and polkas in the great Viennese tradition by Johann Strauss II in a matinee program anchored by a performance of Don Quixote by Richard Strauss featuring cellist Lynn Harrell and BSO principal violist Steven Ansell as soloists. The music of Johann Strauss II was ubiquitous in Vienna for the majority of the 19th century and has never lost its popularity with the concertgoing masses. Richard Strauss, no relation, was an entirely different kind of composer, and his tone poem Don Quixote provides some heft among the Waltz King's effervescent dances."

Enjoy the stream on WCRB!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Tanglewood July 16-18, 2010

Here's a cut and paste from the BSO's website. The concerts will be broadcast and streamed over WCRB as usual, with "pregame shows" 1/2 hour before concert time. As was the case last Friday, Maestro Tilson Thomas is replacing James Levine in this Friday and Saturday's performances.

Stravinsky & Mozart 
Friday, July 16, 8:30PM

San Francisco Symphony Music Director Michael Tilson Thomas, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, and the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, John Oliver, conductor, reprise one of the highlights of last fall’s Symphony Hall subscription series, the pairing of Mozart's beloved Requiem with Stravinsky's Symphony of Psalms, written to celebrate the BSO's 50th anniversary, Friday, July 16, at 8:30 p.m.

Mahler Symphony No. 3 
Saturday, July 17, 8:30PM

Maestro Tilson Thomas leads the Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra in its first Shed performance of the season, joined by the Women of the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, the American Boychoir, Fernando Malvar-Ruiz, music director, and mezzo-soprano Karen Cargill. In addition to the massive forces required, Mahler's Symphony No. 3 stretches to approximately 100 minutes, making it the longest piece in the standard orchestral repertoire. 

Boston Pops Orchestra with Special Guest Arlo Guthrie and Alec Baldwin 
Sunday, July 18, 2:30PM

Currently in its 125th anniversary season, the Boston Pops and conductor Keith Lockhart, along with the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, John Oliver, conductor, welcome renowned folk musician Arlo Guthrie and Emmy Award-winning actor Alec Baldwin. Alec Baldwin joins the orchestra and chorus to narrate "The Dream Lives On: A Portrait of the Kennedy Brothers", by composer Peter Boyer and Tony Award-winning lyricist Lynn Ahrens. This new multi-media work, commissioned for the Pops, combines quotes from speeches by the Kennedy brothers with original text and video, accompanied by a dramatic orchestral score. Arlo Guthrie will join the Pops for a set that includes favorites like "This Land Is Your Land," "Coming into L.A.," and "City of New Orleans." 

Friday, July 9, 2010

Tanglewood July 9-11, 2010 — Amazing Video

The weekend starts this evening with Mahler's Symphony No. 2, "Resurrection," conducted by Michael Tilson Thomas (who was an assistant conductor of the BSO way back when). James Levine would have conducted if he hadn't been recuperation from back surgery. The performance will also include Layla Claire, soprano, Stephanie Blythe, mezzo-soprano, and the Tanglewood Festival Chorus.

Saturday evening brings an all-Beethoven program with Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos conducting the King Stephen Overture, Piano Concerto No. 3, with Gerhard Oppitz, piano, and Symphony No. 5.

On Sunday afternoon Maestro Frühbeck returns to lead the orchestra in Mozart's Serenade No. 6 in D, K.239, "Serenata notturna," and Violin Concerto No. 5 in A, with Pinchas Zukerman as soloist, and Ein Heldenleben, by Richard Strauss.

BTW, a note on the BSO Tanglewood schedule page indicates that WAMC will broadcast/stream the Sunday concert. Dunno about the others.

Finally, check out this video. The note seems to be wrong about the singer's age. Elsewhere, I find he was born in 1992 and this performance was in 1995. Also the source says his voice changed a few months later. Apparently this is an aria that the No. 1 treble of the choir often sings at these family concerts. But, corrections to background info aside, I think he does a sensational job.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Tanglewood 2010 Season — July 9 - August 29

The Boston Symphony Tanglewood concerts this summer will all be broadcast on WCRB. Broadcasts will begin at 8:00 p.m. on the Friday and Saturday evenings and at 2:00 Sunday afternoons with a "pregame show." The concerts themselves begin one half hour later. The broadcasts are also to be streamed. (Click "Listen Live" near the upper right of the page.) Times are US Eastern Time.

I'll try to remember to let you know each week what is coming up, but of course you can always just tune in and find out. I'm not sure about WAMC, which also transmitted the concerts last summer. If I find out, I'll let you know.