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Encores and Curtain Calls
photo courtesy of Music in Deerfield
Miro String Quarter will play in Sage Hall at Smith College Feb. 7.

Encores and Curtain Calls: French horn will take center stage in Feb. 13 Pioneer Valley Symphony concert

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

The sound of the horn is the soul of the orchestra. — Robert Schumann Never underestimate the feistiness factor of a French horn player. For feistiness — right along with artistry — are, in equal measure, what it takes to master this most daunting of instruments. Just listen to the testimony of one dual-instrumentalist: “As a person who plays both … 0

Encores and Curtain Calls: A new African spin on classic ballet

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

I had seen the ballet of ‘Swan Lake’ as a child but it was as an adult, when I saw a production featuring Erik Bruhn, that I first noticed how significant a part the ever-present threat of violence played. This juxtaposition of great beauty and grace with a backdrop of pure evil stayed … 0

Encores and Curtain Calls: Partying with Bach at the new year

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

If Bach is not in Heaven.....I am not going! —William F. Buckley Among the region’s most scintillating seasonal rituals is the yearly convocation of the Baroque Berkshire Bach Society. The shindig, entitled “Virtuosi Concerti for the New Year,” will take place at the Academy of Music in Northampton Saturday, Jan. 2, at 7:30 … 0

Encores and Curtain Calls: 1950s urban fever hits the big screen

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Now it begins, now we start One hand, one heart, Even death won’t part us now. — Stephen Sondheim There are certain films — and types of films — that cry out to be seen on the big … 0

Big bands, little choruses and 12 tiny tones

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

One interesting thing about jazz, or art in general, but jazz especially is such an individual art form in the sense that improvisation is such a big part of it, so it feels like it should be less soldiers in an army and more like free spirits melding. … 0

The sound of many strings

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

The guitar is a small orchestra. It is polyphonic. Every string is a different color, a different voice. -Andres Segovia A flock of guitars descends upon the UMass Fine Arts Center With all the incredible music on offer … 0

Resurrected music of an unsung master

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

A man may be born, but in order to be born he must first die, and in order to die he must first awake. G.I. Gurdjieff Pianist Elan Sicroff has given a good chunk of his life to … 0

Seize the music while ye may!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns. —George Eliot If the poignance of fall has one message for us, it … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls:

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

“We take for granted electricity, water, even concerts. Count your blessings.” — Damian Marley The fall university arts calendars are bursting with intriguing musical fruits — each very different and special in its focus, each presented by seasoned, … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: four earthly voices from heaven

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

“The mystery of the beginning of all things is insoluble by us; and I for one must be content to remain an agnostic.” — Charles Darwin A rare and intriguing musical experience is in store for all those … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: Raptures of a summer afternoon

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

And the night shall be filled with music, And the cares that infest the day Shall fold their tents like the Arabs And as silently steal away. — Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, “The Day Is Done” There’s something about … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: Music for the silver screen

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

“Film composing is a splendid discipline, and I recommend a course of it to all composition teachers.” — Ralph Vaughan Willams, English composer While a lion’s share of the summer’s musical and theatrical crops have been harvested, there … 0

Encores and Curtain Calls: When less is more

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

What, you may wonder, is the most challenging kind of music both for composers to create and listeners to follow? Vast works for symphony orchestra or full chorus? — or a grand blending of both, like Handel’s “Messiah” … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: Musical dramatization of Babar story comes to MTC Sunday

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

A welcome treat awaits the young and the young of heart at the Mohawk Trail Concerts Series in Charlemont on Sunday, July 19, at 3 p.m., thanks to a visit by no less than Babar, that most gentlemanly … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: Summer music festivals

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Editor’s note: Encores & Curtain Calls now runs every other week. “Summer afternoon, summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language.” — Henry James With such a plethora of … 0