Arts & Events

New: Island City Opera “Don Pasquale” —Great Voices, Great Laughs, Great Venue

John McMullen ATCA
Tuesday January 24, 2017 - 11:33:00 AM

Alameda’s thriving Island City Opera Company opened the comic opera Don Pasquale last Friday. The opera buffa was a relief from the angst of Inauguration Day. -more-

Early Mahler at San Francisco Symphony

Reviewed by James Roy MacBean
Friday January 20, 2017 - 12:03:00 PM

In a well-planned concert series devoted to early works by Gustav Mahler, Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony performed over the weekend of January 13-15 the symphonic movement entitled Blumine, the Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen, and Das klagende Lied. Two of these three works are rarely heard, so this program offered an enticing element of curiosity. Of the three works, however, only the best-known Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen (Songs of a Wayfaring Journeyman) lived up to what we have come to expect and cherish in Mahler. Beautifully sung by mezzo-soprano Sasha Cooke, these songs of lament over a lost love were intensely moving, full of longing and bitterness. Cooke’s vocalism was unerring, her voice richly colored. My only note of qualification is that no matter how great a performance is given by a mezzo-soprano (such as Janet Baker, Brigitte Fassbaender, or Sasha Cooke), these songs were written for a baritone; and to my mind the greatest rendition of them is still the one by Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau on a recording with Raphael Kubelik conducting the Berlin Philharmonic. -more-

OUR DAILY BIRD:Chestnut-backed chickadee

William E. Woodcock
Friday January 20, 2017 - 11:30:00 AM
Chestnut Backed Chickadee