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By Stephen Wigler and Stephen Wigler,Music Critic | March 26, 1992
Mariss Jansons became an international conducting star in spite of the fact that the Soviet Union forbade it. He went ahead and did it anyway."In our country we used to have a saying -- 'anything is possible as long as it is forbidden,' " says Jansons, who will conduct the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra tonight and tomorrow in works by Rossini, Saint-Saens and Sibelius.In 1979, the Oslo Philharmonic invited Jansons to become its chief conductor. But the Soviet government would not allow the Latvian-born conductor to accept the position.
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By Stephen Wigler and Stephen Wigler,SUN MUSIC CRITIC | April 28, 1996
Sibelius, Symphonies No. 3 in C (Opus 52) and No. 5 in E-flat (Opus 82), performed by the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, Mariss Jansons (EMI Classics 7243 5 55533 2 4):If anyone conducts Sibelius (or, for that matter, any Northern European composer) any better than the Latvian-born, Russian-trained Jansons, someone please tell me who. Jansons conducts both these works in a lean and mean fashion -- he never dawdles or falsely sentimentalizes -- and he achieves the huge emotional catharsis of the Fifth Symphony's great last movement without sounding hurried as do other modern conductors (Lorin Maazel, for example)
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By J. Wynn Rousuck | October 31, 1993
'Journey Through the Mind' is a one-man Poe showWill Stutts will perform his one-man show, "Journey Through the Mind . . . Edgar Allan Poe," at the Baltimore Museum of Art's Meyerhoff Auditorium tomorrow at 7:30 p.m. to benefit the Baltimore-based Schapiro Training and Employment Program (STEP), an organization dedicated to providing training and vocational rehabilitation for individuals with psychiatric disabilities."Journey Through the Mind" has played two extended New York engagements and formed the basis of the PBS film "With Poe at Midnight."
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By Stephen Wigler and Stephen Wigler,Sun Music Critic | November 30, 1994
The Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra visits the Kennedy Center tonight as part of an American tour that officially celebrates the 75th year since the ensemble's founding. Unofficially, however, the tour celebrates the 15th year of the orchestra's remarkable relationship with its music director, Mariss Jansons.When Jansons went to Oslo in 1979, he was a promising young conductor who was almost unknown outside of the Soviet Union; the Oslo Philharmonic was a provincial orchestra, with 70 players, located in one of Europe's musical backwaters.
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By Stephen Wigler and Stephen Wigler,Sun Music Critic | November 30, 1994
The Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra visits the Kennedy Center tonight as part of an American tour that officially celebrates the 75th year since the ensemble's founding. Unofficially, however, the tour celebrates the 15th year of the orchestra's remarkable relationship with its music director, Mariss Jansons.When Jansons went to Oslo in 1979, he was a promising young conductor who was almost unknown outside of the Soviet Union; the Oslo Philharmonic was a provincial orchestra, with 70 players, located in one of Europe's musical backwaters.
NEWS
By Stephen Wigler and Stephen Wigler,SUN MUSIC CRITIC | April 28, 1996
Sibelius, Symphonies No. 3 in C (Opus 52) and No. 5 in E-flat (Opus 82), performed by the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, Mariss Jansons (EMI Classics 7243 5 55533 2 4):If anyone conducts Sibelius (or, for that matter, any Northern European composer) any better than the Latvian-born, Russian-trained Jansons, someone please tell me who. Jansons conducts both these works in a lean and mean fashion -- he never dawdles or falsely sentimentalizes -- and he achieves the huge emotional catharsis of the Fifth Symphony's great last movement without sounding hurried as do other modern conductors (Lorin Maazel, for example)
FEATURES
By Stephen Wigler and Stephen Wigler,Sun Music Critic | September 8, 1991
If last year was a musical party -- four major Baltimore musical institutions celebrated major anniversaries -- this season is the morning after.No one is suffering from a hangover -- there are no severe financial problems -- but the economy is down, expenses are up and things seem a little gray. The Baltimore Opera Company has cut back from four productions to three; the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra doesn't have soloists quite as glittering as in previous years; and the Shriver Hall series also seems a bit less ambitious.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith | March 2, 2003
The Washington Performing Arts Society has another typically enticing lineup of more than 60 attractions for the 2003-2004 season, presented at a variety of venues. On the classical front, the big news is the first area performance by the Berlin Philharmonic with its new music director, Sir Simon Rattle. The concert, a co-presentation with the Kennedy Center, has Rattle's stamp all over it -- a work by young, ear-stretching German composer Heiner Goebbels, an underplayed symphony by Sibelius (No. 7)
ENTERTAINMENT
By Stephen Wigler and Stephen Wigler,Music Critic | March 27, 1992
Good performances of Sibelius' Symphony No. 2 don't necessarily require a genuinely good conductor. This is one of those pieces that can be said to play itself: It's filled with good tunes, notes that are not terribly difficult to play and dramatic moments that lead inevitably to a grand peroration.Genuinely grand performances of this most popular of the Sibelius symphonies, however -- the kind that guest conductor Mariss Jansons gave last night with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra in Meyerhoff Hall -- are another matter; they require a conductor who is a master.
NEWS
By Stephen Wigler and Stephen Wigler,Sun Music Critic | September 26, 1994
Music lovers in the West have been hearing a good deal about the great things taking place at St. Petersburg's Kirov Orchestra under its music director, Valery Gergiev. To judge from the all-Russian program that Gergiev and the Kirov gave yesterday at the Kennedy Center, it's all true.This was an perhaps an even better concert than the one that conductor Mariss Jansons and the St. Petersburg Philharmonic gave at the Kennedy Center last year. This is not said to compare unfavorably one splendid Russian-trained conductor with another.
FEATURES
By J. Wynn Rousuck | October 31, 1993
'Journey Through the Mind' is a one-man Poe showWill Stutts will perform his one-man show, "Journey Through the Mind . . . Edgar Allan Poe," at the Baltimore Museum of Art's Meyerhoff Auditorium tomorrow at 7:30 p.m. to benefit the Baltimore-based Schapiro Training and Employment Program (STEP), an organization dedicated to providing training and vocational rehabilitation for individuals with psychiatric disabilities."Journey Through the Mind" has played two extended New York engagements and formed the basis of the PBS film "With Poe at Midnight."
FEATURES
By Stephen Wigler and Stephen Wigler,Music Critic | March 26, 1992
Mariss Jansons became an international conducting star in spite of the fact that the Soviet Union forbade it. He went ahead and did it anyway."In our country we used to have a saying -- 'anything is possible as long as it is forbidden,' " says Jansons, who will conduct the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra tonight and tomorrow in works by Rossini, Saint-Saens and Sibelius.In 1979, the Oslo Philharmonic invited Jansons to become its chief conductor. But the Soviet government would not allow the Latvian-born conductor to accept the position.
FEATURES
By Stephen Wigler and Stephen Wigler,Sun Music Critic | September 8, 1991
If last year was a musical party -- four major Baltimore musical institutions celebrated major anniversaries -- this season is the morning after.No one is suffering from a hangover -- there are no severe financial problems -- but the economy is down, expenses are up and things seem a little gray. The Baltimore Opera Company has cut back from four productions to three; the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra doesn't have soloists quite as glittering as in previous years; and the Shriver Hall series also seems a bit less ambitious.
FEATURES
By Tim Smith and Tim Smith,SUN MUSIC CRITIC | March 10, 2005
The Washington Performing Arts Society will mark its 40th anniversary season with the premiere of a gospel work commissioned for the occasion and the presentation of a cross-section of classical and jazz talent. The 2005-2006 lineup includes a dozen events in the newly opened Music Center at Strathmore, as well as several dozen more at the Kennedy Center and other Washington venues. Although WPAS recently cut back on the quantity of touring orchestras it presents, the quality of the list remains high.
FEATURES
By Stephen Wigler and Stephen Wigler,Sun Music Critic | March 31, 1995
Two remarkable Baltimore Symphony debuts -- by conductor Mario Venzago and pianist Robert Levin -- helped to make the orchestra's concert in Meyerhoff Hall last night one of the finest this year.The name of Levin, who performed Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 21 in C Major (K. 467), is hardly a household word -- unless one happens to be hip to 18th- and early 19th-century performance practice or to the latest Mozart scholarship. In those worlds, Levin's Mozart playing has something of the status that Rubinstein's Chopin and Horowitz's Liszt once enjoyed -- and for good reason.
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