The Well-Tempered Ear

Classical music news: Longtime Metropolitan Opera music director and conductor James Levine withdraws until 2013. Madison Symphony Orchestra starts its holiday reduced-price ticket sale today.

December 12, 2011

AN ALERT: Starting today at 11 a.m., the Madison Symphony Orchestra will be selling single tickets to its remaining four concerts for $15 and $40. Such reduced priced tickets can make a fine holiday gift (see MSO music director and conductor John DeMain in his Santa hat below in a photo by Bob Rashid) – as can tickets to any of the many classical music groups in the Madison area. For more information about the sale, which has been very successful in at years, visit: For more information about the MSO’s remaining concerts and which ones you might want to choose from, visit:

By Jacob Stockinger

James Levine (below) has just announced that, because of continued uncertainty surrounding his state of health, he will withdraw completely from his duties at the Metropolitan Opera until 2013.

It has been a busy, illness-pagued and sad couple of years for James Levine, the 68-year-old famed conductor and much acclaimed music director of the Metropolitan Opera and the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the last post which he had already given up.

For more about the news, including analysis and commentaries about how Levine’s action could hurt or benefit the Met, check out these stories:

Don’t forget also to check out the link below.

It is an excellent story from New York Magazine with a lot of fascinating background information about Levine. It includes why he is so reticent about the media and about the path he took from a piano student to piano prodigy and then his apprenticeship in conducting and opera; about his longtime live-in partner and his interest in dinosaur bones, and about his ascendance to become one of the world’s powerhouse figures on the classical music and opera scene — only to experience a near tragic fall through a series of events.

Posted in Classical music

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