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Our motto: "Critical thinking in the cheap seats." Unbiased, honest classical music and opera opinions, since 2007. All written content © 2015 by Paul J. Pelkonen. For more about Superconductor, visit this link.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Concert Review: Winter Skies and Lullabies

The New York Philharmonic plays Sibelius and Brahms.
by Paul J. Pelkonen
The violinist Frank Peter Zimmermann. Photo by Klaus Rudolph © the photographer.

The audience at the New York Philharmonic’s series of 11am Friday matinee concerts skews toward the conservative; music lovers gathered to hear timeless works, preferably by composers form the 19th century whose surnames begin with 'B' On Friday morning, conductor Sakami Oramo led the orchestra in just such a concert, a sturdy three-course brunch of Sibelius and Brahms.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Concert Review: The Topless Piano

The Beethoven Journey with Leif Ove Andsnes.
by Paul J. Pelkonen
The pianist Leif Ove Andsnes (center) in rehearsal with members of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra.
Photo by Holger Talinski © 2014 Mahler Chamber Orchestra.
There was a Beethoven marathon this week at Carnegie Hall. On Monday and Wednesday night, pianist Leif Ove Andsnes played and conducted all five concertos for solo piano and orchestra, with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra. The pianist himself led the band from the keyboard, an arrangement that was used on the recordings drawn from this project and at all the earlier concerts on the band's current North American tour.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Concert Review: An Apocalyptic Anniversary

The Park Avenue Chamber Symphony turns 15.
by Paul J. Pelkonen
David Bernard (center) at the helm of the Park Avenue Chamber Symphony.
Photo provided by Hemsing Associates.
The great city of New York is home to a vibrant community of amateur musicians, players with training and experience who do not necessarily perform full-time. One of the more eminent ensembles of the last decade has been the Park Avenue Chamber Symphony. On Sunday afternoon, the PACS celebrated its 15th anniversary Sunday with a concert at Lincoln Center's medium-sized Rose Theater, located in the Time Warner Center on Columbus Circle

Monday, February 23, 2015

Concert Review: The Virtuoso in Winter

Marc-Andre Hamelin plays the 92nd St. Y.
by Paul J. Pelkonen

Marc-André Hamelin. Photo by Sim Canetty Clark for Colbert Artists Management.

The annual appearance of Marc-Andre Hamelin in a solo piano recital is an occasion that few lovers of keyboard mosic would dare miss. Yet Saturday night's thick, wet snowstorm made travel to the 92nd St. Y a difficult endeavor for some. Those in attendance heard the acclaimed virtuoso play a varied program, featuring the music of Debussy, John Field and Liszt alongside one of his own compositions.

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Since 2007, Superconductor has grown from an occasional concert or CD review to a near-daily publication covering classical music, opera and the arts in and around NYC, with excursions to Boston, Philadelphia, and upstate NY. I am a freelance writer living and working in Brooklyn NY. And no, I'm not a conductor.