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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: Joseph braves a snowstorm for a fantastic performance

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

“The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls.” — Pablo Picasso The New Year is nigh upon us. So, let us lift our cups to artists — those seemingly crazed, courageous souls … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: Come one, come all, sing ye noel

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

“I once wanted to become an atheist, but I gave up — they have no holidays.” — Henny Youngman (standup comic/violinist) It’s not our fault, it’s Mama Nature’s; she’s the one who keeps immersing the planet in her … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: Radiance and glory

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

“A table, a chair, a bowl of fruit and a violin; what else does a man need to be happy?” — Albert Einstein Perhaps it’s the perennial softening power of Christmas, perhaps purely wishful thinking or, just possibly, … 0

Encores and Curtain Calls: Double anniversary in Deerfield

Thursday, December 5, 2013

“I, too, played the organ frequently in my youth, but my nerves could not stand the power of this gigantic instrument. I should place an organist who is master of his instrument at the very head of all … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: A ‘Nutcracker’ from the Emerald Isle

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

“To regret the past, to hope in the future, and never to be satisfied with the present: that is what I spend my whole life doing.” — Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky If you reckon in all the stage, screen, … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: Exuberant & joyous work

Thursday, November 21, 2013

“The volatile, utopian, experimental quality of the music — its insoluble mystery — still makes a great many performers (whether using period or modern instruments) feel insecure and frightens them off.” — Heinz Holliger (renowned oboe virtuoso) Back … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: Muses of early America

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Perhaps nowhere else in historical America do agony and ecstasy so closely intertwine as in the foothills of New England, where tight-lipped, terminally pragmatic farmers eked out their existences with no great expectations even as, in the ivory tower of an Amherst bedroom, exquisitely sculpted gems of claustrophobic … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls:

Thursday, October 31, 2013

“I haven’t understood a bar of music in my life — but I have felt it.” — Igor Stravinsky You don’t need to have a bulldozer to go deep; if you know where to find the gold, you can mine the same treasure much more humbly with a … 0

Encores & Curtain Calls: Dynamic, angular & playful

Thursday, October 24, 2013

“You got to play the flute as a flute — like that; you can’t play — like — a tenor concept on soprano; it sounds wrong. But some guys do it, and they think it’s OK, but not so!” — Jerome Richardson,  tenor saxophonist and flutist Jazz pianists, … 0

Wonderfully, pathetically human

Thursday, October 17, 2013

“Chaplin wasn’t the funniest, I wasn’t the funniest, this man was the funniest.” — Classic silent film comedian, Buster Keaton,  speaking of Stan Laurel Boys will be boys, which is why Laurel and Hardy will live as long as films endure: for these two seemingly fully fledged adults … 0

Sonorous, elegant & radiant

Thursday, October 10, 2013

“In the next world, I shan’t be doing music, with all the striving and disappointments. I shall be being it.” — Ralph Vaughan Williams A nice way to get acquainted with our own Greenfield Community College Chorus is to sit in on its traditional season-starting mini-concert at the … 0

Life without drama is no life at all

Thursday, October 3, 2013

“All playwrights should be dead for 300 years.” — Joseph L. Mankiewicz Academy Award-winning  writer, director, producer The human mind cannot for long bear a void — an empty canvas; it seems it has to be busy painting a picture, or telling itself something to keep a narrative … 0