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John Ferrillo

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Rockport rules

Pianist David Deveau, celebrating his 15th year as director of the Rockport Chamber Music Festival (now Rockport Music) and the opening of the elegant, $20 million Shalin Liu Performance Center on Main Street, said that the sound in the new hall, at the
A new beginning for the music festival
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  June 18, 2010
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Stuff at night

This week’s health headlines also included the announcement from the Boston Symphony Orchestra that music director James Levine has been sidelined again, from the “excruciating pain” he’s been suffering since his surgery for a herniated disc.
The BSO without Levine, Yo-Yo Ma, the Cantata Singers, American Classics, the Zarounian Ensemble
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  April 02, 2010
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Heaven!

Martin Pearlman's edition of Monteverdi's Vespro della Beate Vergine, with inserted antiphons to suggest an actual service, remains a masterpiece of historical research and inspired guesswork.
The BSO and Boston Baroque at their best
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  February 26, 2010
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Let's rock

WGBH radio has ended its 58-year tradition of live Friday-afternoon BSO broadcasts, and it doesn't seem that public outcry is going to change that.
The BSO, the Cantata Singers, Discovery Ensemble, and BCMS
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  January 22, 2010
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Blessings: mixed and otherwise

By odd coincidence, in recent weeks we’ve had performances of two important operatic rarities, landmark early works a century apart: 30-year-old Handel’s Amadigi (1715) and 20-year-old Rossini’s Tancredi (1813, his 10th opera!).
Boston Baroque’s Amadigi; Opera Boston’s Tancredi; the BSO’s Beethoven; the Borromeo’s Bartók; Brahms from BCMS and BSOCP
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  October 30, 2009
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Midsummer madness

After a relatively quiet summer, I saw Boston Midsummer Opera's Cosí fan tutte at BU's Tsai Center. Then I raced out to Tanglewood for a Mark Morris program accompanied by Yo-Yo Ma and Emanuel Ax, a BSO matinee with Ma, and all six concerts in the annua
Mark Morris, Yo-Yo Ma, and the Festival of Contemporary Music at Tanglewood, Mozart in Boston, Meyerbeer at Bard
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  August 21, 2009


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A little history

Two of Boston's most admired and honored composers (both Pulitzer winners) have just celebrated landmark birthdays: Yehudi Wyner his 80th and John Harbison his 70th.
Yehudi Wyner and John Harbison, Susanna Mälkki with the BSO, Natalia Gutman with the BPO, and BLO's Don Giovanni
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  May 01, 2009
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Diva-gations

Last week's Boston Symphony concert was a snaggle of contradictions. British guest conductor Mark Wigglesworth was substituting for the exciting but erratic Russian maestro Yuri Termirkanov, who'd cancelled all his American appearances.
Mark Wigglesworth conducts the BSO; Renée Fleming returns to Symphony Hall
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  April 24, 2009
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Center of gravity

If all those young people at last Thursday's BSO concert didn't leave Symphony Hall feeling excited about classical music and eager to come back, then classical music is in even more trouble than I thought.
Shi-Yeon Sung and Nelson Freire at the BSO; plus the Schubertiade Music Players and Emmanuel's St. Matthew Passion
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  April 17, 2009
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Ring in the new

If 2009 lives up to the grace and power of some of the concerts that began it, we can look forward to a vintage year.
Haydn trios, Kirchner's 90th-birthday concert, Cantata Singers' Britten, Teatro Lirico's Aida
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  January 20, 2009
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Old and new

There was hardly a concert I was more eager to hear than the Celebrity Series of Boston’s celebration of pianist Leon Fleisher’s 80th birthday.  
Leon Fleisher at 80, Harry Christophers with the Handel and Haydn Society, André Previn and James Levine at the BSO
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  October 16, 2008


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Opening pitch

The most moving moment of this year’s Boston Symphony Orchestra opening gala came before the concert started — the standing ovation for James Levine, who looked rested and recuperated after his kidney surgery this summer, an operation that forced him to
James Levine’s gala and Brahms, Russell Sherman’s Liszt, the Bostonians’ Kurt Weill
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  October 01, 2008
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Orpheus in the afterworld

Tomsic’s last Boston recital was four years ago. We can’t afford to be without her this long.

Harbison and Mahler at the BSO, and the return of Dubravka Tomsic


By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  April 22, 2008
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Passion-less

If the St. John Passion is Bach’s equivalent of lesser Shakespeare, the St. Matthew Passion is Bach’s King Lear.
Bernard Haitink and the BSO; Dominique Labelle with the Handel and Haydn Society
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  April 02, 2008
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Innocents abroad?

Great symphony orchestras don’t just play at home.
The BSO prepares to go on tour
By JEFFREY GANTZ  |  August 22, 2007
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But not simpler

James Levine’s last program of the BSO season was an odd assortment.
James Levine and Christoph von Dohnányi at the BSO, Tod Machover at the ICA, Karita Mattila
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  April 17, 2007


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Beyond the fringe

It was a good week for chamber opera: Bluebeard’s Castle from the BSO, Curlew River from Intermezzo.
The BSO’s Beethoven, Schoenberg, Bartók, and Brahms; Intermezzo’s Britten; Zander’s Mahler
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  November 20, 2006
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Transfigured nights

James Levine and the BSO resumed their Beethoven/Schoenberg series with superb performances of two pieces at the opposite ends of the Schoenberg spectrum.
The BSO’s Schoenberg and Beethoven; Boston Baroque’s Don Giovanni; Opera Boston’s La clemenza di Tito
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  October 24, 2006
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Marketplace and temple

At times, this ‘American’ program, led by the BSO’s first American music director, bordered on being a Pops concert.
The BSO’s opening night; Marcus Thompson and the Jupiter String Quartet
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  October 03, 2006
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Orpheus ascending

Chinese-born director Chen Shi-Zheng is the latest in a line of original opera directors (Sarah Caldwell, Peter Sellars) who’ve developed a Boston following.
Monteverdi’s Orfeo, Richard Conrad, Dolores Ziegler, and John Ferrillo
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  September 26, 2006
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Sweet tooth

I hope the estate of Leonard Bernstein is collecting royalties for The Little Prince . Rachel Portman’s unremittingly sweet and relentlessly lilting score for this children’s opera based on Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s famous story borrows heavily from Be
  Boston Lyric Opera imports The Little Prince , the BSO premieres Yehudi Wyner’s piano concerto, and Renée Fleming
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  April 19, 2006


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Classical giants

Audiences love the Beethoven Seventh. And this audience went bananas. But I didn’t.
James Levine’s Beethoven, Daniel Barenboim’s Mozart
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  February 14, 2006
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Amazing weekend

James Levine’s opening salvo for his year-long Beethoven/Schoenberg series with the Boston Symphony Orchestra couldn’t have been more ambitious: the work that opened Symphony Hall in 1900.
James Levine with the BSO and BSO Chamber Players, Hoose and the Cantata Singers  
By LLOYD SCHWARTZ  |  January 24, 2006