Classical Music News of the Week, May 4, 2019

First-Ever "Burgers, Bourbon, & Beethoven Festival"

Death of Classical and Green-Wood are wildly excited to announce the first-ever Burgers, Bourbon & Beethoven Festival at Green-Wood Cemetery, May 25, 2019, from 7-10PM.

The event will feature competing burger recipes that will be sampled and rated by the audience, a whiskey tasting of boutique bourbons alongside craft cocktails, and a performance of Beethoven's immortal Fifth Symphony by the String Orchestra of Brooklyn, conducted by Eli Spindel.

Vying for the coveted Golden Spatula will be Harlem Public, represented by chef Chad Vigneulle, and Madcap Cafe, represented by chef Heather Fuller. Audience members will taste and rate each recipe via the Burger Club website (www.brgrclub.com), providing a real-time leaderboard of the top burger. Hot dogs will also be available, just because...

The food will be washed down by a sampling of whiskeys generously provided by Angel's Envy, Blackened American Whiskey, Five & 20, NY Distilling Co, Van Brunt Stillhouse, Widow Jane, and more.

The evening will conclude - as all good evenings should - with a rousing performance of Beethoven's towering Fifth Symphony, as well as Schubert's "Unfinished" Symphony, by the String Orchestra of Brooklyn, conducted by Eli Spindel. Matt Abramovitz, Program Director at WQXR, will be the evening's host with the most.

Green-Wood – 25th Street at 5th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY.
Tickets are $80, $75 for The Green-Wood Historic Fund and Brooklyn Historical Society members.

Tickets and Info:
https://www.deathofclassical.com/angelshare/burgers-bourbon-beethoven

--Andrew Ousley, Unison Media

Washington Performing Arts Announces 2019-20 Season
Washington Performing Arts has just announced its 53rd season, comprising 45 main stage events across six venues in the Greater D.C. region. The season includes the world premiere of Christopher Tin's Kickstarter-record-setting oratorio, To Shiver the Sky, at The Anthem; return visits from major artists and friends of Washington Performing Arts from multiple genres such as Midori, Emanuel Ax, Zakir Hussain, Chick Corea, and Wynton Marsalis; and early glimpses of the stars of tomorrow, including pianists Seong-Jin Cho and Drew Petersen; jazz artists Veronica Swift, Melissa Aldana, and Matthew Whitaker; and street-dancers Lil Buck and Jon Boogz. The Washington Performing Arts resident Gospel Choirs are also spotlighted in numerous contexts, and Washington Performing Arts furthers its commitment to partnerships with other local arts institutions, including the Kennedy Center, Choral Arts Society of Washington, and the U.S. Air Force Band.

"Artists engage the complexity of our world – whether beautiful or brutal –  in ways that are deeply personal and at the same time resonate profoundly in the shared space of a live performance," commented Jenny Bilfield, President & CEO of Washington Performing Arts. "From the bold programs of our Hayes Piano Artists, to several all-Beethoven concerts, to works that probe the relationship of humanity to the skies and cosmos, and our strong accent on themes of social justice, I am excited about the scale and scope of the Washington Performing Arts 2019/20 season and the many enduring partnerships that have enriched it."

Subscriptions go on sale to the general public Tuesday, May 14, at 9:30 a.m. at WashingtonPerformingArts.org, by phone at (202) 785-9727, and in person at the Washington Performing Arts Ticket Office, located at 1400 K Street NW, Suite 500, Washington, DC. A series of advance sales periods for Washington Performing Arts Friends (annual donors), organized by gift level, begins Thursday, May 2, at 9:30 a.m. A complete listing of 2019/20 season artists and events will be available online as of Tuesday, April 30, at WashingtonPerformingArts.org.

--Caroline Heaney, Bucklesweet

Schwalbe Artists in May
May 5:
Sherezade Panthaki
French Renaissance songs
Parthenia Viol Consort

May 5:
Benjamin Butterfield
Britten: Serenade for Tenor, Horn & Strings, Op.31
Eclipse Chamber Orchestra

May 7:
Mary Phillips
Wagner: Die Walküre
Metropolitan Opera Association

May 9, 10, 11, 12:
Meg Bragle
Bach: Magnificat in D major, BWV 243
Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir

May 9:
Gregory Lorenz
Recital: At the Edge of Awareness
Kosciuszko Foundation

May 9, 10:
Matthew Halls
Lully: Suite from Le Bourgeois gentilhomme
Muffat: Concerto Grosso 5 (Armonico Tributo)
Bach: Orchestral Suite No. 1
Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra
May 24, 25, 26:
Haydn: The Creation
Dallas Symphony Orchestra

May 11, 12:
Stephen Stubbs
Monteverdi: Orfeo
Baroque Chamber Orchestra of Colorado

May 12, 13:
Thomas Cooley
Sherezade Panthaki
Handel: Dixit Dominus
Bach: Cantata No. 131
Purcell: Arias from The Fairy Queen
Music of the Baroque

May 16:
Marc Molomot
Purcell: Dido and Aeneas
The Angel's Share

May 18:
Laurence Cummings
Eric Jurenas
Handel: Saul, HWV 53
Göttingen International Handel Festival

May 18:
Michael Schade
Mendelssohn: Elijah
Wiener Musikverein

May 19:
Jory Vinikour
Poulenc: Concert Champêtre 
Orchester Wiener Akademie
May 31:
Music by Bach, Duphly, Handel, and Rameau
Clavecin en Concert

May 19:
Shereazde Panthaki
Meg Bragle
Bach: Mass in B minor, BWV 232
Bach Society of St. Louis

May 19, 23:
Laura Stickling
Cipullo: The Parting
Music of Remembrance

May 20:
Daniel Taylor
Purcell: The Fairy Queen
Opera Nuova

May 22 - June 1:
Alexander Dobson
James Rolfe: Against Nature
Coleman Lemieux & Compagnie

May 23:
Marguerite Krull
De la Guerre cantatas
Mango Baroque

May 24:
Nicholas McGegan
Sherezade Panthaki
Meg Bragle
Bach: Cantata No. 34, "O ewiges Feuer, o Ursprung der Liebe"
Bach: Oboe d'Amore Concerto in A Major, BWV 1055r
Bach: Ascension Oratorio

May 25:
Nichols McGegan
Meg Bragle
Orchestral Suite No.2 in B minor, BWV 1067
Bach: Brandenburg Concerto No. 4 in G Major, BWV 1049
Bach: Cantata No. 134, "Ein Herz, das seinen Jesum lebend weiss"
Calgary Philharmonic

May 25 - June 1:
Alessandra Visentin
Puccini: Madama Butterfly
Teatro di San Carlo

May 31:
Michael Schade
Strauss: Daphne
Staatsoper Hamburg

For complete information, visit https://schwalbeandpartners.com/artists/

--Schwalbe and Partners

World Premiere of New Work by 2019 Pulitzer Prize-winning Composer Ellen Reid
On Sunday, May 19, the Young People's Chorus of New York City (YPC) in partnership with the Shallaway Children's Choir from Newfoundland presents "Balancing Bubbles," curated by 2019 Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Ellen Reid and YPC Artistic Director/Founder Francisco J. Núñez on the theme of balance. The 7 p.m. concert, to take place at the Gerald W. Lynch Theater of John Jay College will be highlighted by the world premiere of Ms. Reid's So Much on My Soul, a YPC commission, to be premiered by both of the evening's choruses, which incorporates poetry on the theme by several choristers.

In addition to individual sets by YPC and Shallaway, the program also features Ms. Reid's percussion work Fear | Release performed by Mantra Percussion, as well as a YPC/Mantra Percussion performance of her cover of The Books' Take Time -  all related to the concert theme and an example of the scope of her musical ideas.

For complete information, visit ypc.org

--Angela Duryea, Young People's Chorus of New York City

Chanticleer Presents "Sacred Ground"
Grammy Award-winning Chanticleer concludes its 2018-2019 season with "Sacred Ground," June 8 through 15. Five performances will be presented in venues across the Bay Area featuring a selection of sacred music ranging from Palestrina to Paul Schoenfield, as well as traditional folk songs and spirituals.

This program will be presented as part of Chanticleer's San Francisco Bay Area subscription season on five occasions in locations around the Bay Area: Saturday, June 8 at 7:30 p.m., St. Mark's Lutheran Church, San Francisco; Sunday, June 9 at 5:00 p.m., Trinity Episcopal Church, Sacramento, CA; Tuesday, June 11 at 7:30 p.m., Mission Santa Clara, CA; Friday, June 14 at 8:00 p.m., St. Mary Magdalen, Berkeley, CA; and Saturday, June 15 at 7:30 p.m., St. Stephen's Church, Belvedere, CA.

For complete information, visit https://www.chanticleer.org/

--Brenden Guy PR

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Meet the Staff

Meet the Staff
John J. Puccio, Editor, Publisher, Reviewer

Understand, I'm just an everyday guy reacting to something I love. And I've been doing it for a very long time, my appreciation for classical music starting with the musical excerpts on The Big John and Sparkie radio show in the early Fifties and the purchase of my first recording, The 101 Strings Play the Classics, around 1956. In the late Sixties I began teaching high school English and Film Studies as well as becoming interested in hi-fi, my audio ambitions graduating me from a pair of AR-3 speakers to the Fulton J's recommended by The Stereophile's J. Gordon Holt. In the early Seventies, I began writing for a number of audio magazines, including Audio Excellence, Audio Forum, The Boston Audio Society Speaker, The American Record Guide, and from 1976 until 2008, The $ensible Sound, for which I served as Classical Music Editor.

Today, I'm retired from teaching and use a pair of bi-amped VMPS RM40s loudspeakers for my listening. In addition to writing the Classical Candor blog, I served as the Movie Review Editor for the Web site Movie Metropolis (formerly DVDTown) from 1997-2013. Music and movies. Life couldn't be better.
Karl W. Nehring, Contributing Reviewer

For more than 20 years I was the editor ofThe $ensible Soundmagazine and a regular contributor to its classical review pages. I would not presume to present myself as some sort of expert on music, but I have a deep love for and appreciation of many types of music, "classical" especially, and have listened to thousands of recordings over the years, many of which still line the walls of my listening room (and occasionally spill onto the furniture and floor, much to the chagrin of my long-suffering wife). I have always taken the approach as a reviewer that what I am trying to do is simply to point out to readers that I have come across a recording that I have found of interest, a recording that I think they might appreciate my having pointed out to them. I suppose that sounds a bit simple-minded, but I know I appreciate reading reviews by others that do the same for me -- point out recordings that I think I might enjoy.

For readers who might be wondering about what kind of system I am using to do my listening, I should probably point out that I do a LOT of music listening and employ a variety of means to do so in a variety of environments, as I would imagine many music lovers also do. Starting at the more grandiose end of the scale, the system in which I do my most serious listening comprises an Onkyo C-7030 CD player, Legacy Audio StreamLine preamplifier, Legacy Audio PowerBloc2 amplifier, and a pair of Legacy Audio Focus SE speakers augmented by a Legacy Point One subwoofer. I also do a lot of listening while driving in my 2016 Acura RDX with its nice-sounding ELS Studio sound system through which I play CDs (the ones I especially like I rip to the Acura's hard drive so that I can listen to them whenever I want) or stream music through the system using my LG G7 ThinQ cell phone, which features surprisingly sophisticated audio circuitry. For more casual listening at home when I am not in my listening room, I often stream music through the phone into a Vizio soundbar system that has remarkably nice sound for such a diminutive physical presence. And finally, at the least grandiose end of the scale, I have an Ultimate Ears Wonderboom Bluetooth speaker for those occasions where I am somewhere by myself without a sound system but in desperate need of a musical fix. I just can't imagine life without music and I am humbly grateful for the technology that enables us to enjoy it in so many wonderful ways.
Bryan Geyer, Technical Analyst

I initially embraced classical music in 1954 when I mistuned my car radio and heard the Heifetz recording of Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto. That inspired me to board the new "hi-fi" DIY bandwagon. In 1957 I joined one of the pioneer semiconductor makers and spent the next 32 years marketing transistors and microcircuits to military contractors. Home audio DIY projects remained a personal passion until 1989 when we created our own new photography equipment company. I later (2012) revived my interest in two channel audio when we "downsized" our life and determined that mini-monitors + paired subwoofers were a great way to mate fine music with the space constraints of condo living.

Visitors that view my technical papers on this site may wonder why they appear here, rather than on a site that features audio equipment reviews. My reason is that I tried the latter, and prefer to publish for people who actually want to listen to music; not to equipment. My focus is in describing what's technically beneficial to assure that the sound of the system will accurately replicate the source input signal (i. e. exhibit high accuracy) without inordinate cost and complexity. Conversely, most of the audiophiles of today strive to achieve sound that's euphonic, i.e. be personally satisfying. In essence, audiophiles seek sound that's consistent with their desire; the music is simply a test signal.

Mission Statement

It is the goal of Classical Candor to promote the enjoyment of classical music. Other forms of music come and go--minuets, waltzes, ragtime, blues, jazz, bebop, country-western, rock-'n'-roll, heavy metal, rap, and the rest--but classical music has been around for hundreds of years and will continue to be around for hundreds more. It's no accident that every major city in the world has one or more symphony orchestras.

When I was young, I heard it said that only intellectuals could appreciate classical music, that it required dedicated concentration to appreciate. Nonsense. I'm no intellectual, and I've always loved classical music. Anyone who's ever seen and enjoyed Disney's Fantasia or a Looney Tunes cartoon playing Rossini's William Tell Overture or Liszt's Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2 can attest to the power and joy of classical music, and that's just about everybody.

So, if Classical Candor can expand one's awareness of classical music and bring more joy to one's life, more power to it. It's done its job. --John J. Puccio

Contact Information

Readers with polite, courteous, helpful letters may send them to classicalcandor@gmail.com.

Readers with impolite, discourteous, bitchy, whining, complaining, nasty, mean-spirited, unhelpful letters may send them to classicalcandor@recycle.bin.

"Their Master's Voice" by Michael Sowa

"Their Master's Voice" by Michael Sowa