1

Tag Archives | Leonard Bernstein

The ensemble and The Philadelphia Orchestra. Photo courtesy The Philadelphia Orchestra.

Review: ‘West Side Story’ staged by The Philadelphia Orchestra

West Side Story has never sounded as good as in last weekend’s performances by Yannick Nézet-Séguin and the Philadelphia Orchestra. It even surpassed Leonard Bernstein’s own recording, which sounds sluggish in comparison. Never once did Yannick and the Philadelphians sound like a symphony orchestra performing a pops concert. Rather, the 42-year-old led a jazzy performance […]

Continue Reading
Maestro Gianandrea Noseda. Photo courtesy of the Kennedy Center.

Report: ‘National Symphony Orchestra Season Opening Gala Performance’ Conducted by Maestro Gianandrea Noseda and Featuring Yo-Yo Ma and Cynthia Erivo

Listen up, DC! There is a new Maestro in town. Maestro Gianandrea Noseda, whose impressive resume ranks him as one of the world’s most sought after conductors, opened his inaugural season as music director of the National Symphony Orchestra with a gala performance of Leonard Bernstein compositions. Cellist Yo-Yo Ma and soloist Cynthia Erivo accompanied […]

Continue Reading
200x200 Leonard Bernstein.

Review: ‘Bernstein on Broadway’ at The Kennedy Center

It was a glorious evening for Leonard Bernstein and musical theater fans at The Kennedy Center. It was the exceptional, one-night-only opening to the worldwide celebration of Leonard Bernstein’s upcoming 100th birthday. It was Bernstein on Broadway. The evening’s celebration focused on Bernstein’s works for Broadway. The selected musical pieces ran the gamut from the […]

Continue Reading
Yannick Nézet-Séguin. Photo courtesy The Philadelphia Orchestra.

Review: The Philadelphia Orchestra Performs Mahler’s Longest — and Greatest — Symphony

Although not frequently performed, the Symphony No. 3 is Gustav Mahler’s most encompassing work, the piece which best exemplifies his life and career. Yannick Nézet-Séguin led a magnificent performance of it during the closing week of The Philadelphia Orchestra’s 2016-17 season. The Symphony No. 3 contains the greatest balance between anguish and love and its finale is […]

Continue Reading
Sasha Cooke. Photo by Dario Acosta.

Review: The Philadelphia Orchestra Presents Leonard Bernstein’s First Major Composition

Leonard Bernstein’s Symphony No. 1 was the major undertaking at The Philadelphia Orchestra’s concerts of May 3, 5 and 6, 2017. Yannick Nézet-Séguin led the piece as a prelude to a year-long celebration of Bernstein’s centenary. (He was born on August 25, 1918.) Nézet-Séguin conducted the concerts in the midst of a three-week stint leading Wagner’s […]

Continue Reading
West Side Story at The Media Theatre.

Review: ‘West Side Story’ at The Media Theatre

Earlier this season, The Media Theatre presented Shakespeare’s classic Romeo & Juliet. Now they’re concluding their 2016-2017 season with a production of West Side Story, the musical that put a 20th Century spin on the Bard’s story and became a masterwork in its own right. Set in New York’s Upper West Side in the mid-1950s, West […]

Continue Reading
Michael Tilson Thomas. Photo by Kristen Loken.

Review: The Philadelphia Orchestra Performs Seeger, Berg & Beethoven with Guest Conductor Michael Tilson Thomas

Contrast was stark in the concert which Michael Tilson Thomas led with The Philadelphia Orchestra. The first half displayed two radically dissonant pieces from the 1930s — Ruth Crawford Seeger’s Andante for Strings and Alban Berg’s Violin Concerto, while the second half was devoted to Beethoven’s classic Symphony No. 3 (the Eroica). You could make […]

Continue Reading
1075c2558987f91bf28a723618a717f4

‘COME HEAR THE MUSIC PLAY:’ Memories of My Twenty Years as Agent For John Kander by Richard Seff: Part Two: ‘The Curtain Rises’: ‘Flora, the Red Menace,’ ‘Cabaret,’ ‘Zorba,’ and ‘The Happy Time’

John Kander, Fred Ebb, and Richard Seff at a dinner honoring Harold Prince. Photo courtesy of Richard Seff. THE CURTAIN RISES. One of the properties for which I tried to get this new team hired was the Theatre Guild’s upcoming The Unsinkable Molly Brown which had Richard Morris as book writer. The Guild wanted a […]

Continue Reading
peter-and-the-wolf-promo

Interview: Maestro Simeone Tartaglione on Conducting ‘Peter and the Wolf’ TOMORROW 11/5 at 2:30 PM and 4:30 PM at the Gaithersburg Arts Barn

Residents of the DC Metro Region are in for a treat this weekend. For two performances only at the Gaithersburg Arts Barn, Maestro Simeone Tartaglione will be conducting Peter and the Wolf. The 1936 composition by Sergei Prokofiev tells the story of Peter and his animal friends who are each represented by a different instrument […]

Continue Reading
Philly-Love-Flyer (1)

‘Love Can Build a Bridge’: An Anti-Violence Charity Concert: Interviews With Actors and Musicians

The violence in the US and overseas has rattled millions of people, making many of us feel vulnerable. Sarah Gafgen, well-known actor, singer, and director, took the initiative and, with the help of the Philadelphia theater community, initiated the first Love Can Build A Bridge charity concert to support three organizations that actively work toward […]

Continue Reading
download (16)

Review: ‘West Side Story’ at The Little Theatre of Alexandria

Poverty, street violence, guns, drugs, working-class whites blaming Hispanic immigrants for their financial woes, mistrust of the police—is this an article in last week’s newspaper? It certainly could be, but it also proves the timelessness of the groundbreaking 1957 Broadway musical West Side Story. Inspired by the Shakespearean tragedy Romeo and Juliet, this classic tale […]

Continue Reading
expand-westside10

The Long View: ‘How ‘Romeo and Juliet’ was Re-written over 50 Years Ago and Signature’s ‘West Side Story’ Masterpiece

Yes, Virginia — and DC and Maryland also — this West Side Story is Real. A Real Masterpiece. Even more, perhaps a Christmas miracle, in Shirlington Village. It’s just that good. Considered by many, indeed perhaps by most, rightly to be America’s incontestable “Best Musical” ever, yet it is only now staged for the first time […]

Continue Reading
images (65)

Magic Time! A Look at Signature Theatre’s Stunning ‘West Side Story’

Signature Theatre’s production of West Side Story is every bit as eye-filling and ear-thrilling as any lover of this great American musical could wish. On a spacious thrust stage inside the intimate Max, with the audience seated on three sides, Director Mathew Gardiner and Choreographer Parker Esse have unleashed a dancing-and-singing cast with breathtaking muscular […]

Continue Reading
westsidebutton

‘West Side Story’ at Signature Theatre (Review)

Fabulous! Potent! Forceful! Tender! Let yourself fall in love again or for the first time with West Side Story. From the first note of the orchestra’s prologue, then quickly met with the syncopated cool snaps of fingers under shadowy light; Matthew Gardiner’s confidently vigorous touch guides Signature Theatre’s West Side Story into a burst of dance, […]

Continue Reading
images (37)

In the Moment: An Interview with William V. Madison Author of ‘Madeline Kahn: Being the Music-A Life’ Coming to JCCNV’s Book Fest on 11/10@7:30 pm

A terrific opportunity awaits those of us who enjoy delving deeper to examine the lives of actors that enthralled us over their careers. The upcoming occasion features author William Madison who will be at Book Fest 2015 at the JCCNV. Madison will be discussing his recent biography of Madeline Kahn. The book is entitled Madeline Kahn: Being […]

Continue Reading