San Diego’s Mainly Mozart Festival is celebrating its 25th anniversary this season by inaugurating new series and expanding the concept of what a music festival can do. At La Jolla’s TSRI Auditorium, the festival presented a pair of stimulating lectures in its new Mozart and the Mind series and offered a stirring concert by the St. Lawrence String Quartet.
In 2005, the young Polish pianist Rafal Blechacz surprised the world and thrilled his fellow countrymen by winning the Chopin International Piano Competition in Warsaw, the first Pole to take top honors at the Chopin Competition in 30 years. Blechacz made his impressive San Diego debut Friday (May 10, 2013) with a program devoted to the Polish composers Chopin and Szymanowski, as well as works by J.S. Bach and Beethoven.
We know the end of the San Diego Symphony season is near when Music Director Jajha Ling brings out the Russian Romantic warhorses. This weekend’s program offered Tchaikovsky’s heart-on-the-sleeve Fourth Symphony and Olga Kern as the winning soloist in Rachmaninoff’s First Piano Concerto.
After a significant absence from Art of Élan’s stage, the organization’s co-founder flutist Demarre McGill returned with some of the region’s finest chamber players for a concert that started with G. P. Telemann and ended with David Bruces’s 2011 octet “Steampunk.”
Grand opera is a term used to classify a style of opera that flourished in 19th-century Paris, but you don’t have to be a musicologist to know that everything about Guiseppe Verdi’s Aida is calculated on a grand scale. The Pharaoh’s resplendent palace, imposing military parades, pagan temples bustling with…