By Paul E. Robinson
DIGITAL REVIEW – Brothers Demarre and Anthony McGill with pianist partner Michael McHale have launched a new Cedille recording that offers, among its profiles, a narrated trio inspired by eye-witness poetry of Langston Hughes.
By William Albright
HOUSTON – In a virtuosic return to Jones Hall after historic floods, music director Andrés Orozco-Estrada and the Houston Symphony offered three works inspired by Paganini’s 24th Caprice, and an Ives hootenanny.
By Daniel Hathaway
OBERLIN – At 25, British pianist Benjamin Grosvenor is a deep thinker whose touring recital program this season highlights historical-stylistic contrasts between composers such as Ravel and Berg, Brahms and Brett Dean.
By Simon Chin
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Under new music director Gianandrea Noseda, the National Symphony sounded energized, taut, and well disciplined, like dutiful students eager to please a likable teacher at the start of a new school year.
By Mike Telin
CLEVELAND – Margaret Brouwer’s “environmental oratorio,” Voice of the Lake, was inspired by an algae bloom in Lake Erie that caused a water crisis in 2014. Its premiere makes an urgent case that the lake is in trouble.
By Rick Schultz
LOS ANGELES — Yuval Sharon’s War of the Worlds features Annie Gosfield’s riveting score, soprano Hila Plitmann’s tour-de-force portrayal of a Martian, and actress Sigourney Weaver of the Alien films as narrator.
By Colin Eatock
TORONTO – In its ambitious Remembrance Day program, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra featured Jeffrey Ryan’s Afghanistan: Requiem for a Generation, with a libretto by Canada’s first official “war poet,” Suzanne Steele.
By Keith Powers
BOSTON – Burke & Hare, by Julian Grant and Mark Campbell, draws on history to relate an entertaining tale of a grim, thankfully abandoned practice – the creation (by any means necessary) of cadavers for sale to a medical school.
By Barbara Jepson
NEW YORK – The Choir of Trinity Wall Street offered the first segment of a compelling project – part of Lincoln Center’s White Light Festival – that takes in settings of all 150 Psalms by as many composers, including new commissions.