Monthly Archives: March 2008

On Closer Observation: Janine Jansen at Disney Hall

Not So StinkyEduard Hanslick, a.k.a. Beckmesser, cast one of his notorious thunderbolts in the direction of Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto in 1881 when the ink on its mss. was barely dry, and generations of us hot-pen scriveners have feasted on his words ever since. “It gives us for the first time the hideous notion,” Hanslick wrote, […]

The Axe Manual: Bang the Drum Quickly

Good Old Sir Harry Composer Harrison Birtwistle Two of the world’s most endearing originals showed up at the most recent Monday Evening Concert – their music did, at least. One was Ralph Shapey, long gone but long remembered by us exndash;New Yorkers for his fiery spirit: a small, ill-tempered but somehow lovable fighter for a […]

Stirring, Terrifying

Lesser Is Better Berlin’s Simon Rattle Wendy Lesser is the founder and editor of The Threepenny Review, a quarterly collection of thinking and, therefore, writing that I find indispensable. I don’t know her musical credentials, but her piece in the latest issue, on Simon Rattle – his Mahler performances with the Berlin Philharmonic, his masterly […]

Arnold and Edward, and Their Morning at Disney Hall

Edward is 12, loves the piano and is beginning to take lessons at his school in Mar Vista. Sometimes he comes to my house, when his mother comes to clean, and he picks out tunes on the piano. Arnold is 13, loves basketball and pretends not to care about music. Neither they nor their mom, […]