Encores and Curtain Calls
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The opening concert of the Pioneer Valley Symphony’s season will be at the Fine Arts Center Concert Hall, University of Massachusetts-Amherst, on Oct. 25, at 7:30 p.m. The season theme is “All the World’s a Stage” and the concert includes Tchaikovsky’s Suite from “The Sleeping Beauty,” Henri Tomasi’s Trombone Concerto, with Greg Spiridopoulos, trombone, and the Symphony No. 4 in E Minor Op. 98 by Johannes Brahms.

Encores & Curtain Calls: Do not fear the trombone

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

“I don’t know why but the trombone makes me very uncomfortable.” — Sigmund Freud, father of psychology A close encounter of the trombone kind is in the offing as the opening concert of the Pioneer Valley Symphony’s season comes to the Fine Arts Center Concert Hall at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, on Oct. 25, at 7:30 p.m. The season theme … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: The Song of Earth

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

“Music is the universal language of mankind.” — Henry Wadsworth Longfellow Let us imagine, just for a moment, that, like Superman, we also possess interstellar hearing. Returning to earth from heroic adventures in the deepest recesses of the galaxy, we begin to spy the glistening lights of earth from afar and to hear … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: Brick Church Music series returns

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

The cello is a hero because of its register — its tenor voice. It is a masculine instrument, whereas the violin is feminine because of its soprano pitch. When the cello enters in the Dvorak Concerto, it is like a great orator. — Mstislav Rostropovich Fear not! With the cessation of the Old … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: All Souls musical haven

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

“I think music in itself is healing. It’s an explosive expression of humanity. It’s something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we’re from, everyone loves music.” — Billy Joel “I had recently moved to Greenfield, … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: 'If it sounds good, it is good'

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

“Democracy is based upon the conviction that there are extraordinary possibilities in ordinary people.” — Harry Emerson Phosdick As the more perceptive and discerning of my readers have by now perhaps discovered, I am not particularly chauvinistic about … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: One thing is certain about the multifaceted David Fersh: when he performs, you’re sure to get more than you bargained for

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

“All the world’s a stage ... And one man in his time plays many parts.” — Shakespeare, “As You Like” It,” Several years ago, a previously unknown entity by the name of David Fersh appeared on my radar … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: Music, stories, fellowship

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

“Music is everybody’s possession. It’s only publishers who think that people own it.” — John Lennon There’s a lot to be said for the way music made its way through the world before its professional handlers got a … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: ‘The Black Man in Song’

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

“When I studied in conservatories as a young man, I absorbed the traditions of music. Then, when I became a pupil of Edgar Varese, my horizons broadened and I wrote in a very dissonant style. Then I began … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: Sweet-cream sound

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

“Listen — the horn!” — Ralph Vaughan Williams (to students, on hearing a Beethoven symphony) If one instrument were to be named the pivot-point, the arbitrator of the entire orchestra and its sound, the French horn, which is … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: 'Songs of Divine Chemistry'

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

All day long a little burro labors, sometimes with heavy loads on her back and sometimes just with worries about things that bother only burros. Once in a while a kind monk comes to her stable and brings … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: the 'Barefoot Contessa' of the keyboard

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

“I wander silently and am somewhat unhappy, And my sighs always ask “Where?” In a ghostly breath it calls back to me, “There, where you are not, there is your happiness.” — “Der Wanderer” (“The Wanderer”), Georg Philipp … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: PVS’ ‘Exploration’

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

“I cannot conceive of music that expresses absolutely nothing.” — Bela Bartok Paul Phillips and the Pioneer Valley Symphony continue their expanding trajectory through the music of recent as well as past centuries with “Exploration,” a concert featuring … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: Hamelin — ‘I try to discover the piece along with them’

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

“Genuine creation, a seal (proof) of the spirit, reveals itself only when the artist is heedless of creating, when he is intent upon serving. The great masters of the past served, and therefore their compositions have earned the … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: Vienna in Vermont

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

“Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore, Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed, to me, I lift my lamp beside the Golden Door.” — Ezra Lazarus … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: Pain & passion

Thursday, January 2, 2014

“There are two ways to live your life One is as if nothing is a miracle The other is as if everything is a miracle” — Albert Einstein One of the wonderful privileges of writing a column such … 0