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By Tim Smith and Tim Smith,SUN MUSIC CRITIC | February 8, 2002
Of all the disturbing developments in the world of classical music - the dumbing-down or elimination of classical radio stations, the decline in the number of classical recordings, increasingly conservative concert programming in many places, the cheesy marketing of some classical artists - perhaps the most lamentable is the dearth of vocal recitals. A recital of "art songs" is a naked kind of music-making, just the poetry and the music, just the voice and the interpretation, only a piano for accompaniment.
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By Tim Smith, The Baltimore Sun | February 20, 2013
Vocal recitals are rare enough in Baltimore that even a program of familiar lieder would qualify as a novelty. A program of way-off-the-beaten-path songs? That's beyond cool. Magdalena Kozena, the high-profile, Czech mezzo-soprano, and her equally high-profile accompanist, the Russian-born, Israeli-American pianist Yefim Bronfman, chose a fascinating sample of repertoire for their recital Sunday night presented by the  Shriver Hall Concert Series . Four of the five composers on the bill came from the mainstream, but the works selected for this occasion did not.  In Mussorgsky's song cycle "The Nursery," which evokes the alternately animated, awed and mischievous mindset of a child, Kozena offered an abundance of colorful vocal touches -- even a nose-thumbing gesture for good measure.
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By Stephen Wigler and Stephen Wigler,Sun Music Critic | March 22, 1994
The soprano Benita Valente's recital Sunday afternoon at Shriver Hall was originally intended to have been a joint appearance with her friend, the distinguished mezzo-soprano Tatiana Troyanos. That concert was canceled because of the death last year of Troyanos from cancer. What we heard instead was a recital, with the pianist Cynthia Raim, of lieder by Schumann, Debussy, Wolf (15 selections from the "Italian Songbook") and Fernando Obradors.Perhaps because one expected so much, it proved a somewhat disappointing concert.
NEWS
July 23, 2006
"Pictures of the Past ... Lest we Forget," an exhibit of paintings, pastels, photography, pen-and-ink drawings, poetry and song highlighting Harford County heritage, opened this month at Rockfield Manor in Bel Air and will remain on display through Sept. 22. The exhibit, a collaboration between the Harford Artists Association and the Rockfield Foundation, features the work of more than 28 county artists. The show comprises about 80 paintings and photographs focusing on the theme of presenting scenes of historic Harford: old mills, schools, churches and rural scenes, ranging across the county from Jarrettsville to Joppatowne, and from Bel Air to Havre de Grace.
NEWS
By Rona Hirsch and Rona Hirsch,Contributing Writer | February 18, 1994
In a program that crosses continents and culture, George Gershwin will share the bill with Mieczyslaw Karlowicz.The eclectic mix of American and Polish music will be presented by soprano Alina Kozinska tomorrow night at Oakland in Columbia.The dual concert will feature the Broadway show tunes of Gershwin, Leonard Bernstein, Cole Porter and Andrew Lloyd Webber, and the Polish art songs of Karlowicz, Jan Gall and Stanislaw Moniuszko."Columbia is a perfect place for it," said Ms. Kozinska."Howard County is pretty sophisticated in its cultural taste," said Oakland director Jan Morrison.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith and Tim Smith,SUN MUSIC CRITIC | March 3, 2005
Perhaps a kindred spirit may some day be found whose ear will catch the melodies from my words." When German poet Wilhelm Muller expressed that wish, not long before he died in 1827 at the age of 34, he did not know just how brilliantly and timelessly it would be granted. Franz Schubert found in Muller's verses just the inspiration he needed to write some of his greatest art songs. A good thing, too. Otherwise, chances are that Muller and his poetry would have slipped forever into obscurity.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith, The Baltimore Sun | February 20, 2013
Vocal recitals are rare enough in Baltimore that even a program of familiar lieder would qualify as a novelty. A program of way-off-the-beaten-path songs? That's beyond cool. Magdalena Kozena, the high-profile, Czech mezzo-soprano, and her equally high-profile accompanist, the Russian-born, Israeli-American pianist Yefim Bronfman, chose a fascinating sample of repertoire for their recital Sunday night presented by the  Shriver Hall Concert Series . Four of the five composers on the bill came from the mainstream, but the works selected for this occasion did not.  In Mussorgsky's song cycle "The Nursery," which evokes the alternately animated, awed and mischievous mindset of a child, Kozena offered an abundance of colorful vocal touches -- even a nose-thumbing gesture for good measure.
NEWS
By GLENN McNATT | January 22, 1994
The weather Wednesday night being uncommonly frigid, I was sorely tempted to skip Kathleen Battle's scheduled concert at Meyerhoff Symphony Hall.Ms. Battle is one of the world's leading opera singers and much in demand as both recitalist and soloist in orchestral programs. She has a beautiful, high soprano voice of exceptional purity -- ''silvery'' is the adjective often used to describe her sound. She is also a ravishingly handsome woman with an enchanting stage presence.Still, the weather was foul, and I suspected that under normal circumstances only the most ardent opera buffs would brave the elements to hear her art.(Over the last year I've written a number of pieces in this space on the subject of opera, but I hardly call myself a ''buff.
FEATURES
By TIM SMITH and TIM SMITH,SUN MUSIC CRITIC | January 9, 2006
If the name Lawrence Brownlee doesn't yet ring a lot of bells among fans of vocal music, it surely will soon. The Ohio-born tenor's career was launched only about four years ago, but he has already debuted at London's Royal Opera House and Milan's La Scala. He can produce uncommonly elegant phrasing as easily as he can set off vocal fireworks, a show-stopping combination he delivered in Washington Concert Opera's 2004 presentation of Rossini's La Donna del Lago. Brownlee, backed by ever-supportive and technically refined pianist Howard Watkins, sparked another hearty round of cheers in a compelling recital for Washington's invaluable Vocal Arts Society Thursday night at the Kennedy Center's Terrace Theater.
NEWS
July 23, 2006
"Pictures of the Past ... Lest we Forget," an exhibit of paintings, pastels, photography, pen-and-ink drawings, poetry and song highlighting Harford County heritage, opened this month at Rockfield Manor in Bel Air and will remain on display through Sept. 22. The exhibit, a collaboration between the Harford Artists Association and the Rockfield Foundation, features the work of more than 28 county artists. The show comprises about 80 paintings and photographs focusing on the theme of presenting scenes of historic Harford: old mills, schools, churches and rural scenes, ranging across the county from Jarrettsville to Joppatowne, and from Bel Air to Havre de Grace.
FEATURES
By TIM SMITH and TIM SMITH,SUN MUSIC CRITIC | January 9, 2006
If the name Lawrence Brownlee doesn't yet ring a lot of bells among fans of vocal music, it surely will soon. The Ohio-born tenor's career was launched only about four years ago, but he has already debuted at London's Royal Opera House and Milan's La Scala. He can produce uncommonly elegant phrasing as easily as he can set off vocal fireworks, a show-stopping combination he delivered in Washington Concert Opera's 2004 presentation of Rossini's La Donna del Lago. Brownlee, backed by ever-supportive and technically refined pianist Howard Watkins, sparked another hearty round of cheers in a compelling recital for Washington's invaluable Vocal Arts Society Thursday night at the Kennedy Center's Terrace Theater.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith and Tim Smith,SUN MUSIC CRITIC | March 3, 2005
Perhaps a kindred spirit may some day be found whose ear will catch the melodies from my words." When German poet Wilhelm Muller expressed that wish, not long before he died in 1827 at the age of 34, he did not know just how brilliantly and timelessly it would be granted. Franz Schubert found in Muller's verses just the inspiration he needed to write some of his greatest art songs. A good thing, too. Otherwise, chances are that Muller and his poetry would have slipped forever into obscurity.
FEATURES
By Tim Smith and Tim Smith,SUN MUSIC CRITIC | February 8, 2002
Of all the disturbing developments in the world of classical music - the dumbing-down or elimination of classical radio stations, the decline in the number of classical recordings, increasingly conservative concert programming in many places, the cheesy marketing of some classical artists - perhaps the most lamentable is the dearth of vocal recitals. A recital of "art songs" is a naked kind of music-making, just the poetry and the music, just the voice and the interpretation, only a piano for accompaniment.
FEATURES
By Daniel Schlosberg and Daniel Schlosberg,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | December 3, 2001
Before soprano Jessye Norman strode on stage Saturday night at Morgan State, Bill Clinton quipped to the audience, "I thought for the longest time that I was traveling here to see the Morgan State Choir - and I would gladly travel anywhere in the country to see them - but I think tonight they have a reasonably good stand-in!" Understatement duly noted. Norman is a real diva and a majestic artistic presence who seldom performs recitals these days. Saturday night's concert, marking the opening of the new Carl Murphy Performing Arts Center, was indeed a rare and revealing evening for those who have followed her career.
NEWS
By Will Englund and Will Englund,SUN FOREIGN STAFF | May 9, 1999
TIRANA, Albania -- Images of blood, pillage, fire and death haunt the hundreds of thousands of children who have fled Kosovo.Some have fallen mute. Some cling to their mothers. Most show a natural human resilience, playing soccer in the dusty refugee camps, tumbling among the army tents, skipping rope to age-old rhymes."But every child here has been through a traumatic experience," said Penelope Lewis, who works for UNICEF. "A lot of children have shattered lives, and it's going to be very difficult to put the pieces together again."
FEATURES
By Stephen Wigler and Stephen Wigler,Sun Music Critic | March 22, 1994
The soprano Benita Valente's recital Sunday afternoon at Shriver Hall was originally intended to have been a joint appearance with her friend, the distinguished mezzo-soprano Tatiana Troyanos. That concert was canceled because of the death last year of Troyanos from cancer. What we heard instead was a recital, with the pianist Cynthia Raim, of lieder by Schumann, Debussy, Wolf (15 selections from the "Italian Songbook") and Fernando Obradors.Perhaps because one expected so much, it proved a somewhat disappointing concert.
FEATURES
By Daniel Schlosberg and Daniel Schlosberg,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | December 3, 2001
Before soprano Jessye Norman strode on stage Saturday night at Morgan State, Bill Clinton quipped to the audience, "I thought for the longest time that I was traveling here to see the Morgan State Choir - and I would gladly travel anywhere in the country to see them - but I think tonight they have a reasonably good stand-in!" Understatement duly noted. Norman is a real diva and a majestic artistic presence who seldom performs recitals these days. Saturday night's concert, marking the opening of the new Carl Murphy Performing Arts Center, was indeed a rare and revealing evening for those who have followed her career.
NEWS
By Will Englund and Will Englund,SUN FOREIGN STAFF | May 9, 1999
TIRANA, Albania -- Images of blood, pillage, fire and death haunt the hundreds of thousands of children who have fled Kosovo.Some have fallen mute. Some cling to their mothers. Most show a natural human resilience, playing soccer in the dusty refugee camps, tumbling among the army tents, skipping rope to age-old rhymes."But every child here has been through a traumatic experience," said Penelope Lewis, who works for UNICEF. "A lot of children have shattered lives, and it's going to be very difficult to put the pieces together again."
NEWS
By Rona Hirsch and Rona Hirsch,Contributing Writer | February 18, 1994
In a program that crosses continents and culture, George Gershwin will share the bill with Mieczyslaw Karlowicz.The eclectic mix of American and Polish music will be presented by soprano Alina Kozinska tomorrow night at Oakland in Columbia.The dual concert will feature the Broadway show tunes of Gershwin, Leonard Bernstein, Cole Porter and Andrew Lloyd Webber, and the Polish art songs of Karlowicz, Jan Gall and Stanislaw Moniuszko."Columbia is a perfect place for it," said Ms. Kozinska."Howard County is pretty sophisticated in its cultural taste," said Oakland director Jan Morrison.
NEWS
By GLENN McNATT | January 22, 1994
The weather Wednesday night being uncommonly frigid, I was sorely tempted to skip Kathleen Battle's scheduled concert at Meyerhoff Symphony Hall.Ms. Battle is one of the world's leading opera singers and much in demand as both recitalist and soloist in orchestral programs. She has a beautiful, high soprano voice of exceptional purity -- ''silvery'' is the adjective often used to describe her sound. She is also a ravishingly handsome woman with an enchanting stage presence.Still, the weather was foul, and I suspected that under normal circumstances only the most ardent opera buffs would brave the elements to hear her art.(Over the last year I've written a number of pieces in this space on the subject of opera, but I hardly call myself a ''buff.
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