The Carver Choirbook is ‘unwrapped’ by The Sixteen at Kings Place

Kings Place’s annual celebration of a particular ‘theme’ has entered its sixteenth year, and in 2024 it is the turn of Scotland to be ‘unwrapped’.   The year-long series will explore…

Chornobyldorf: An Archaeological Opera in Seven Novels

For two weeks in January each year, the Prototype Festival brings small-scale and experimental musical theater to New York.  The focus is on new works that draw not so much…

Delius: A Mass of Life

‘The status attained by Frederick Delius as a composer ensures for every new work from his pen the respectful attention of all classes of musicians.  In the case of a…

Dreams, Desires, Desolation: English Song

In Dreams, Desires, Desolation, baritone Trevor Alexander and pianist Peter Crockford present a miscellany of English song.  There are both art songs – some well-known, others less familiar – and…

‘Love, viewed from the dark side’: Christof Loy’s production of Strauss’s Elektra at the Royal Opera House

Skimming through some of the critical literature on the myth of Electra – who, following the murder of her father, the Mycenaean King Agamemnon, at the hands of her mother…

Homelands: songs of exile, alienation and escape

Homelands is the title of this programme, curated by pianist and writer Aron Goldin and released by Rubicon last October.  However, in the context of creative artists’ representation of ‘home’,…

Lawrence Foster conducts Kodály and Bartók on Pentatone

In a tribute essay to Kodály in the 1965 Aldeburgh Festival programme Benjamin Britten suggested, ‘There can be no composer of our century who has done more for the musical…

Songs of Antiquity: James Newby and Joseph Middleton at Wigmore Hall

Titled Songs of Antiquity, this recital by baritone James Newby and pianist Joseph Middleton began and ended both in the past and in darkness, the Prologue and Epilogue composed by…

Silver Bells: VOCES8 on Christmas Eve

In 2021, VOCES8 invited us to pull a Christmas Cracker.  This year they encouraged us to relish the quiet sparkle of Silver Bells.  Their Christmas Eve live stream, from the…

A seasonal masterpiece: Britten’s A Ceremony of Carols at Temple Church

Britten’s A Ceremony of Carols, for three-part treble voices and harp, is one of the composer’s most joyful works, its expression direct, strong and true.  It was composed in the…