March 5, 2006
IN his brief review of Joshua Bell's new recording of Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto ["Aural Histories, the Next Gen: Blooms in a Warmer Climate," Feb. 26], Chris Pasles wrote that the brilliant and popular American violinist "may be the first musician to open up all the traditional cuts in the last movement." He isn't, not by a long shot. The first performer of the piece, Adolph Brodsky, certainly did not make any cuts in it when he premiered the concerto in 1881. The cuts as we know them were introduced later by Leopold Auer and were observed by most of his pupils.
January 31, 2005 |
Despite the surfeit of musical styles available in today's America, it grows harder and harder to hear a nationalist idiom played authentically on its own.
January 24, 2009 |
Coaxing, cajoling, beguiling, violinist Gil Shaham tried to build a case for bringing Aram Khachaturian's once-popular Violin Concerto back to the mainstream in a performance Thursday night with the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Slim chance. The Soviet Armenian composer wrote the work in 1940 for his brilliant compatriot, David Oistrakh, who championed it in performances at home and abroad during and after World War II. Audiences and Soviet officials loved it for its accessibility, Armenian-flavored sweet-and-sour melodies, Technicolor orchestration and rhythmic vitality.
May 5, 1991 |
Serge Prokofiev's nominal big year--he was born 100 years ago--has brought no major recorded or scholarly revelations. But then there may be nothing of a sensational nature to reveal: no lost, great operas (no great operas, period), no clarifying Urtext of some heretofore inscrutable symphony. The surprises of 1991 have involved refreshing views, from unexpected sources, of well-known or under-appreciated scores.
February 9, 2000
Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts, 12700 Center Court Drive, will continue its film series from the works of French filmmaker Bruno Monsaingeon with "David Oistrakh, Artist of the People" at 7 p.m. March 20. Monsaingeon's most recent musical film, about the late pianist Sviatoslav Richter, "Richter, the Enigma," will close the series at 7 p.m. April 10. The films will be introduced by Wesley O. Brustad, deputy director of the San Diego Museum of Art.
September 4, 1994
Artur Balsam, 88, an ensemble pianist known for years as one of the nation's foremost accompanists. He began his career in the early 1930s accompanying violinist Yehudi Menuhin. For more than 30 years--until the 1970s--Balsam was heard with such other great musicians as Nathan Milstein, David Oistrakh, Zino Francescatti, Pierre Fournier and Mstislav Rostropovich. Also considered a great chamber player, he performed often with the Kroll, Juilliard, Budapest and other string quartets.