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WEEKLY DIGEST | 11/13/2017
News, Research, & Opinion


Unprecedented Commissions, New Gehry-Designed Home for YOLA
LA Times: Mark Swed
Not to be content to be widely considered the most important orchestra in America, the Los Angeles Philharmonic announced on Thursday utopian plans for a 2018-19 centennial season on an unprecedentedly lavish scale.
Read more here >


Three Composers on the Necessity and Pitfalls of Political Music
NY Times: Joshua Barone
David Lang, Caroline Shaw, and Ted Hearne offer their views in advance of concerts at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton.

On Politics and Music: Don’t miss the upcoming IU Penderecki Events – all LIVE on IUMusicLive on Wednesday, 11/15
- 12pm: Politics Meets Culture: The Political and Historical Significance of Penderecki’s “St. Luke Passion”
- 8pm: Penderecki Conducts his “St. Luke Passion” with the Jacobs School Oratorio Chorus and Philharmonic Orchestra.

Female Conductors to Watch

The Washington Post: Anne Midgette
Here are some women who are following in the footsteps of Marin Alsop, JoAnn Faletta, Simone Young, Jane Glover and others, to establish significant international conducting careers. Speranza Scappucci, Mirga Grazinyte-Tyala, Susanna Malkki, Xian Zhang, Karen Kamensek, Anu Tali, Joana Cariero, Oksana Lyniv, Joana Mallwitz, Alondra de la Parra, and Keri-Lynn Wilson

After Michael Tilson Thomas Retires, Who Will Take up the Baton?

SF Chronicle: Joshua Kosman
A new director will not only have to command the role of music director as capably as MTT has, but will be expected to refashion the position to fit the distinctive challenges of American cultural life in the 21st century.

Leonard Bernstein’s Ambitious Last Symphony, “Kaddish”

New Yorker: Russell Platt
The orchestra’s fall festival, “Bernstein’s Philharmonic,” wrapped up last week, with the last and grandest of the composer-conductor’s three symphonies: “Kaddish,” from 1963.

Rap Disrupted Music First. Now It’s TV and Film.

NY Times: Questlove, Salamishah Tillet and John Caramancia
A boom of rap-infused shows, movies, and documentaries underscore the music’s role as a social and political bellwether.

A New Theory as to Why We Love Sad Music

Pacific Standard: Tom Jacobs
New research finds it stimulates a pleasant form of mind-wandering.

The Future of Philadelphia Music: String Quartets in Helicopters?

The Inquirer: David Patrick Stearns
But 2017 has been a succession of large-scale, at-the-edge events. 

Is An Opera An Opera An Opera?

Van-US: Brin Solomon
Dazzlingly abstruse and brimming over with surreal touches, “The Mother of Us All,” an opera with music by Virgil Thomson and a libretto by Gertrude Stein, is an idiosyncratic choice for an experiment in community building in Hudson, New York.


Georgina Joshi Recording Arts Studio, Indiana University
Mix: Thomas Kenny
It seems so obvious that it doesn’t even need to be stated, but Music and Recording are cultural and artistic siblings, symbiotic to the point that, while each may exist in its own world at any one time, they are, at this point in history, forever intertwined. This recently came together in a major way in Bloomington, Indiana, when this past June the world-renowned Jacobs School of Music opened the world-class Georgina Joshi Recording Arts Studio, pictured on this month’s cover.

Music in Schools Gets an Assist from Grammy Organization

The Inquirer: Peter Dobrin
The Grammy Music Education Coalition has launched a fund-raising initiative aimed at benefiting music programs in the school districts of Philadelphia, New York City, and Nashville.

Richard and Emily Smucker Pledge $15 million to Cleveland Orchestra

The Plain Dealer: Zachary Lewis
The name Smucker has been good for the Cleveland Orchestra, and just got a whole lot better. Richard and Emily Smucker recently announced a pledge to the orchestra of $15 million, the couple's largest single gift ever and the second largest gift to the orchestra in recent history.

The Atlantic Hires a Music Director

The Atlantic
Bucking national trends in media coverage of music, The Atlantic has hired jazzman and Late Show with Stephen Colbert bandleader Jon Batiste, who will work “on a range of projects, from writing, to video, to live events.”

How MPR and Minnesota Orchestra Make the Magic of Live Radio

Star Tribune: Graydon Royce
For over four decades, MPR has broadcast Minnesota Orchestra concerts. Here’s a peek behind the scenes. 

At the Met Opera, a Note so High, it’s Never Been Sung Before

The New York Times: Zachary Woolfe
Audrey Luna of the Metropolitan Opera in New York sings the A above high C (paywall) for a split second in Thomas Adès’ new opera, The Exterminating Angel.


The Top 100 Songs in the World
Digital Music News: Daniel Sanchez
Hip-hop and Latin music take the top spots in Digital Music News’ ‘Top 100 Songs’ list.

Inside the Long, Hidden Genealogy of “The Lion Sleeps Tonight”

Rolling Stone: Rian Malan
How American music legends made millions off the work of a Zulu tribesman who died a pauper.

An Artistic Collaboration Uncovers the Violent Roots of Modern India and Pakistan

San Francisco Classical Voice: Lou Fancher
The Partition of British India unfolds in the multimedia melding of Classical Indian and Western music, dance, and art.


Coming Soon: A Small Claims Court for Copyright Infringement
Digital Music News: Daniel Sanchez
If the CASE Act is passed, will musicians finally be able to fight back against piracy and theft?


Florid and Fast
NY Times: Anthony Tommasini
A generation ago there were some superb countertenors around, but not that many. More recently, fine young countertenors just keep appearing on the scene. One of this is Jakub Jozef Orlinski, 26. Listen to his rendition of Vivaldi’s “Il Tigrane”.


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