Music

Embarrassing – but electrifying: Bernstein 100 reviewed

18 November 2017 9:00 am

‘There is something enviable about the utter lack of inhibition with which Leonard Bernstein carries on,’ wrote the critic of…

Hearts and minds

11 November 2017 9:00 am

Debussy’s Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune begins with a sigh: a long, languorous exhalation played on the lower notes of…

Partying like it’s 1899: two lieder recitals reviewed

4 November 2017 9:00 am

If a symphony is, as Mahler famously put it, ‘like the world’, then songs and lieder are like seeing that…

Richard Strauss (image: Getty)

Salon Strauss

21 October 2017 9:00 am

An opera without singers, a Strauss orchestra of just 16, and an early music ensemble playing Mahler: welcome to the…

Make mine a double

14 October 2017 9:00 am

If two concert pianists are performing a work written for two grand pianos, there are two ways you can position…

From desolation to euphoria and back again: Nick Cave at the O2

Mourning glory

7 October 2017 9:00 am

On the face of it, Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds aren’t exactly a natural fit with the O2. Cave’s…

Vice and virtue

5 October 2017 2:00 pm

‘Can the ultimate betrayal ever be forgiven?’ screams the publicity for The Judas Passion, transforming a Biblical drama into a…

Beauty and the beast

30 September 2017 9:00 am

I was going to start with a little moan. About the shouty marketing, the digital diarrhoea, the sycophantic drivel, which,…

Sound and vision

30 September 2017 9:00 am

To get a reminder of how strange the 1970s were, there’s no need to plough through lengthy social and political…

Director’s cut

23 September 2017 9:00 am

Much fuss has been made of the title given to Sir Simon Rattle on arrival at the London Symphony Orchestra.…

The sound of no hands clapping

16 September 2017 9:00 am

‘We’re going to live for ever!’ declares Robert Powell as Gustav Mahler at the end of Ken Russell’s 1974 biopic.…

Northern rock

16 September 2017 9:00 am

A fortnight ago, the debut album by a young British guitar band entered the chart at No. 6. You might…

Bowled over by Bruckner

9 September 2017 9:00 am

The two Proms concerts given on consecutive evenings by the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra were well planned: a short opening work,…

Power of two: Martha Argerich and Daniel Barenboim play a duet at this year’s Lucerne Festival

Mistaken identity

26 August 2017 9:00 am

This year’s Lucerne Festival is given its identity by having as its theme ‘Identity’. Since the word doesn’t mean anything,…

Twin peaks

26 August 2017 9:00 am

Schoenberg began Gurrelieder in 1900, but he didn’t hear it until 1913. By then, he’d moved on, and he ostentatiously…

Wilson’s sparkle and snap

19 August 2017 9:00 am

Back in the period-instrument wars of the 1980s and ’90s, when the forces of historically informed performance smashed out of…

Time to end authenticity

12 August 2017 9:00 am

They say the first step towards recovery is admitting that you have a problem. So I’m staging an intervention and…

Who is Kirill Petrenko?

10 August 2017 1:00 pm

Two summers ago, the BBC were offered a Proms visit by the Bavarian State Orchestra with its music director, Kirill…

Losing our religion

5 August 2017 9:00 am

Sir James MacMillan’s European Requiem, performed at the Proms on Sunday, isn’t about Brexit. The composer had to make this…

Hadyn recreated

22 July 2017 9:00 am

‘Rarely, rarely, comest thou, Spirit of Delight!’ wrote Elgar, quoting Shelley, at the top of his Second Symphony. He should…

The very embodiment of a heritage rock act: Kraftwerk in concert at Brighton Centre, 2017

Back to the future

1 July 2017 9:00 am

As Kraftwerk took their 3D show around Britain last week, a document from 2013 surfaced online, purporting to be their…

His Master’s Feet

24 June 2017 9:00 am

Gerald Barry once licked Beethoven’s carpet. At least, that’s what he told me, and I’m as sure as any interviewer…

Detroit spinner

17 June 2017 9:00 am

When techno first appeared amid the urban wasteland of mid-1980s Detroit, its futuristic sound palette was inspired by the whirring…

White-knuckle ride

10 June 2017 9:00 am

Playing in an orchestra that disintegrates mid-concert is not an experience you forget. One moment everything’s motoring along nicely. Suddenly…

Glamming it up

10 June 2017 9:00 am

Late on the Friday afternoon of The Great Escape — the annual three-day event for which the London music industry…