The Well-Tempered Ear

Classical Music Quiz: What 5 classical performers guarantee sell-outs? What Mozart works does the director of the Mostly Mozart Festival like most? What noises are the most rude or intrusive to make at a concert? Did fiddler Nigel Kennedy ever do illegal drugs?

August 13, 2011
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By Jacob Stockinger

The week has been slow on classicla music news, but big on features. In fact, many of the items make up a kind of quiuz.

Hope you enjoy it.

ITEM: Can you guess who are the five classical music stars that can guarantee a sold-out performance? Ask Washington Post critic and blogger Ann Midgette (below), who wrote a piece on the 40th anniversary of Wolf Trap and cited others’ opinions. Still, The Ear think there are more performers and that sell-outs can also depend on the venue and the program as well other artists.

http://thewell-temperedwireless.blogspot.com/2011/08/of-classical-stars-and-changing-tastes.html

ITEM: What are the Top Five pieces of Mozart (below top) favored by Mostly Mozart Festival director Louis Langree (below bottom, in a photo by Benjamin Ealovega)? You’ve got to love Frenchman Langree’s candor and openness – as well as his terrific choices, though curiously there are no sonatas, or trios, or string quartets, or viola quintets among them. Take a look and then take a  listen:

http://www.wqxr.org/articles/top-5-105/2011/jul/29/louis-langrees-top-five-mozart-works/

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424053111903341404576480142690123296.html

ITEM: James Oestreich (below), a music critic from Wisconsin who works for The New York Times, considers the role of annoying and intrusive sounds at concerts – sounds including his own mechanical heart valve as well as oxygen pumps and coughs. What sounds annoy you most at a concert? How about those oblivious listeners who unwrap cellophane-wrapped candies and cough drops during the quietest part of a slow movement?

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/02/arts/music/unusual-sounds-at-mostly-mozart-preview-at-avery-fisher.html?_r=2

ITEM: Did Bad Boy concert violinist Nigel Kennedy (below) — aka Kennedy, aka Nigel Kennedy — do drugs at a nightclub with an executive of his recording label who is now a MP (Member of Parliament)? Who knows for sure and who can prove it? But doesn’t it seem out of character for the one-time punky string star?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-14342674

Who are your favorite performers who would guarantee you’d come to their concert?

What are your Top Five works by Mozart?

What noises most annoy you at a concert?

Did you ever do drugs with Nigel Kennedy?

The Ear wants to hear.


Posted in Classical music

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