Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Levine's Return

James Levine returned to the BSO this past week with a martial reading of Beethoven's 9th. It was trimmed down to the muscle with little sporting of Viennese schmaltz. Like the conductor himself who looked more diminutive after his shoulder injury. He's a tonic for the BSO, but he never achieves a certain supernal, ineffible reading. A friend has said "he's as good as we can get." That may be true. Personally, I expect great things from Christian Thielemann.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Lorraine Hunt Lieberson

The great mezzo soprano, Lorraine Hunt Lieberson, is gone. Her recording of Bach's Ich Habe Genug, which captured her projection of her own mortality, is, perhaps, the finest performance of this great work. Her warmth, beauty, and artistry were immediately perceived by those lucky to see and hear her in person.

I suppose all of her admirers were fatefully expecting bad news after her cancellations last year. Her appearance in NYC a few months ago seemed to assuage those fears. We all, I think, prayed for her recovery. We should be eternally grateful that we have a recorded legacy of this all too short-lived talent.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Above Suspicion

Wantonly, he sighs, and conjures the coming day.
Not that his spirit was sullen or rather beneath
Fruition of the factious, but the veil concealed
Mostly nothing now, like the wisp of whisker
Scattered about his ignoble chin and lips.
An induction of days proved his worth and salt:
A solitary sun unit was true;
He reckons as much forever in the future;
Thus it is so now, and was:
Ignore the light of a day that merely begs.
(c) 2006, S. Lachterman