October 28, 2014 |
For three decades, Network for New Music has demonstrated how composers bring order out of random materials to make coherent, often thrilling statements about life and art. But for its 30th-anniversary concert Sunday at the Settlement School, it threw order and coherence to the winds. In a hall packed with composers, Linda Reichert's group presented Made by All and Not by One , a game of chance and wit composed by 30 composers in the fashion of the parlor game Exquisite Corpse.
October 21, 2014 |
A white sign fluttered from a fourth-floor balcony at the Piazza at Schmidts where six young men and women sipped from bottles and red plastic cups, music blaring below. "Yo Wiz," the sign read, calling out to rapper Wiz Khalifa, "After Party Over Here. " The best party in the city on Sunday did, indeed, seem to be at the Under 30 music festival, where Khalifa and others played as part of the Forbes Under 30 Summit. The four-day event, which kicked off with the free concert, is bringing billionaires, venture capitalists, business tycoons, and young entrepreneurs together in Philadelphia through Wednesday.
October 15, 2014 |
BACK IN the 1980s, City Hall workers and others in the vicinity could take their lunches to the nearby Arch Street Presbyterian Church and listen to Esther Wideman at the organ. The once-a-week noon concerts were free and part of Esther's contribution to the cultural life of her adopted city. She was the organist and director of music at the church. Esther's passion for the organ took her all over Europe, where she could listen to the music of famous organs, mostly in ancient churches, and get to play many of them herself.
October 3, 2014 |
WHEN WE first heard Stephon Marbury was starring in a musical in China titled "I Am Marbury," we briefly morphed into Tom McGinnis and let go with a lusty, "Are you kidding me?" The 37-year-old Marbury, it seems, is a megastar in China. Bigger than Jerry Lewis in France or David Hasselhoff in Germany. Heck, there's even a statue of the two-time NBA All-Star outside the MasterCard Center in Beijing where he led the Ducks to the Chinese Basketball Association title in March. The musical, which opened last night in Beijing and runs 11 days, is sold out for the first three shows.
October 1, 2014 |
The classical music world is full of stories about great musicians suffering heart attacks in mid-performance but soldiering on because the repertoire was so great they didn't want to stop. Nothing of that sort was going to happen Sunday at First Unitarian Church of Philadelphia when Richard Reed Parry, best known as a member of the Arcade Fire collective, arrived on a tour supporting his first solo album, Music for Heart and Breath . Released by the classical label Deutsche Grammophon, the disc (or discs if purchased on LP set)
September 28, 2014 |
Next month, Forbes magazine is putting on its first Under 30 Summit in Philadelphia, a confab aimed at young tech entrepreneurs. The event runs Oct. 19 to 22. It aims to be a sort of mini-SXSW, with panel discussions, interview sessions, and Shark Tank -style competitions all day long at the Convention Center Oct. 20 and 21. All manner of boldface names will be in town: Tinder cofounder Sean Rad; Shake Shack restaurateur Danny Meyer; America...
September 26, 2014 |
'No more of this breaking down music into all these different kinds," says super-mandolinist Chris Thile. "There's just . . . music. " Maybe "just music" is a good name for the captivating alt-jazz-bluegrass-classical on Thile's new album with super-double-bassist Edgar Meyer. Titled just Bass & Mandolin (Nonesuch)****, it's the first Thile/Meyer since 2008, and it fronts their current tour. The closest they'll get to Philly this time around is an Oct. 9 show at Richardson Auditorium in Princeton.
September 23, 2014 |
PRINCETON - Meryl Streep, the Takacs Quartet, and Philip Roth aren't names likely to be seen together, much less people found in the same concert hall. Yet Princeton University Concerts presented all three in Richardson Auditorium on Friday evening, with the quartet playing Arvo Pärt and Franz Schubert, Streep reading extensively from the 2006 novel Everyman , and its author, Roth, listening in the audience - in a one-time-only event that guaranteed a packed house. Interdisciplinary events are a priority for Princeton University Concerts, this one building on a similar Takacs program presented at Carnegie Hall in 2007, with Philip Seymour Hoffman reading Roth's accounts of how everyday people decline, die, are grieved and remembered.
September 21, 2014 |
Jeff Tweedy has made a lot of records, but the front man for the esteemed American rock band Wilco (and before that, coleader of alt-country outfit Uncle Tupelo) has never put out an honest-to-goodness solo album. That will still be true come Tuesday, when Sukierae (dBpm ), the 20-song set credited to Tweedy (no Jeff), will be released. That's because although Tweedy performed almost all of the music himself, another family member also played a key role. Spencer Tweedy, his 18-year-old son, played drums on the double disc - as he will Sunday night, when Tweedy, the band, headlines the Merriam Theater.
September 16, 2014 |
The great Gothic monsters of 19th-century literature elude convincing musical treatment, probably because these semi-folkloric creatures lose their bite and mystery when baring their souls in music. Wisely, the Philadelphia Opera Collective veered away from direct dramatization of the monster at hand in By You That Made Me, Frankenstein , characterizing the circumstances behind the famous Mary Shelley novel. Seen on Saturday in the thick of the current Fringe Festival, this 90-minute, two-act opera of sorts was presented in the second-floor parlor of the cozy 19th-century-ish Benjamin Franklin Club, in something close to a site-specific performance.