Pianist and author Jack Kohl discusses his new book of essays with Robert Beattie

Robert Beattie in conversation with pianist and author Jack Kohl  Jack Kohl is a pianist and writer from the north shore of Long Island, New York. In 2019 he published a series of essays, Bone over Ivory: Essays from a Standing Pianist. In 2021 he follows this up with a new series of essays, From … Read more

SOPRANO JULIET PETRUS IN CONVERSATION WITH RICK PERDIAN

Rick Perdian talks to soprano Juliet Petrus

Juliet Petrus

In February, Juliet Petrus garnered critical acclaim for her Queen of the Night in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte at the Hamburger Kammeroper. Midway through the run, the first wave of the novel coronavirus shuttered theaters in Germany and Petrus returned to London, where she has spent the rest of 2020 with her husband and son as lockdowns come and go in the UK.

Read more

SOPRANO FATMA SAID IN CONVERSATION WITH RICK PERDIAN

Rick Perdian talks to Fatma Said

Mention Egypt, and classical music lovers immediately think of Verdi’s Aida, which was commissioned by Cairo’s Khedivial Opera House and had its première there in 1871 – and of little else. A new generation of Egyptian singers is changing that dynamic, and Fatma Said in particular is attracting notice for her luminous mezzo-soprano and blossoming international career. With El Nour, her debut recording on Warner Classics, Said combines her twin loves of song and her native country’s culture in music that is as colorful and exotic as the places that inspired it.

Read more

Pianist Duncan Honeybourne in conversation with Robert Beattie

New piano music emerges from the Covid lockdown

Duncan Honeybourne © Kris Worsley Photography

Duncan Honeybourne gave his first London recital at 15 and his first BBC broadcast recital at 17. He was a prize-winner at the Royal Academy of Music and the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, where he graduated with First Class Honours and later received the honorary award of HonRBC for professional distinction. His teachers included Rosemarie Wright, Philip Martin, John York and Dame Fanny Waterman, and he completed his studies in London for three years with Mikhail Kazakevich on a Goldenweiser Scholarship awarded by the Sheepdrove Trust.

Read more

PIANIST ELEONOR BINDMAN IN CONVERSATION WITH ROBERT BEATTIE

Pianist Eleonor Bindman talks to Robert Beattie

Eleonor Bindman (c) Masataka Suemitsu

Eleonor Bindman is a New York based pianist and chamber musician who has received extensive praise for her piano transcriptions. The New York Times commented on her ‘lively, clear textured and urbane’ performances and ‘impressive clarity of purpose and a full grasp of the music’s spirit’. Eleonor has appeared at Carnegie Hall, The 92 Street Y, Merkin Hall, Alice Tully Hall, and on solo concerto engagements with the National Music Week Orchestra, the Staten Island Symphony, the Hudson Valley Philharmonic, the New York Youth Symphony, and The Radio and Television Symphony Orchestra of Moscow, Russia. She is a prize winner of the New Orleans, Busoni and Jose Iturbi international piano competitions and is a recipient of a National Foundation for the Advancement of the Arts award.

Read more

Composer Alexey Shor in conversation with Colin Clarke

Alexey Shor (c) ALIKHAN

It is an exciting time for composer Alexey Shor. I personally first came across his music on a Delos release entitled Classical Music Stars in Malta in which four of his chamber pieces (Farewell Nocturne; Addio; King Matt the First; Coming of Age) shared disc space with music by Ilya Dimov, Khachaturian, Joseph Vella, and the fabulous Handel/Halvorsen Passacaglia. Then, the superstar violinist Maxim Vengerov, no less, performed Shor’s St. Elmo Barcarolle at the Barbican in January this year under the baton of a conductor who is a tireless champion of Shor’s music, Sergey Smbatyan (review); and Vengerov’s encore, after Bruch’s First Violin Concerto and Ravel’s Tzigane, was another work by Shor: his Elegy for violin and orchestra.

Read more

Pianist Leon McCawley in conversation with Robert Beattie

Leon McCawley is one of the UK’s leading concert pianists. He has forged a highly successful career since winning first prize in the 1993 International Beethoven Piano Competition in Vienna and second prize at the Leeds International Piano Competition the same year. Since then, his concert performances and extensive discography have established him as a … Read more

INTERVIEW WITH THE CONDUCTOR VASILY PETRENKO – ‘CULTURE IS WHAT KEEPS US UNITED AND INTEGRATED’

Young-Jin Hur in conversation with Vasily Petrenko

Vasily Petrenko, © Svetlana Tarlova

The world is complex in its embrace of seeming opposites. There is joy in sad music; individual preferences coexist with societal norms; natural tendencies may complement acquired processes. The world is complex, but it is simple in its consistent presence of contradictions. This complexity also holds true for life’s challenges. The truism that bearing difficulties strengthens the self is elevated to metaphysical heights in Marcus Aurelius’ Meditations. In the realm of music, Igor Stravinsky viewed that ‘the more constraints one imposes, the more one frees one’s self of the chains that shackle the spirit.’ A time of difficulty and limitation, thus, seems also a story of hope.

Read more