Classical Notes

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Photo: Glenn Holsten

Keep smiling. The snow is melting, concerts are coming. The Philadelphia Orchestra has dropped Barber's Night Flight from the program opening this afternoon - snow-thwarted musicians missed some rehearsal time this week - but the rest of the program stays: Chopin's Piano Concerto No. 2 with Louis Lortie, Kancheli's "Morning Prayers" from Life without Christmas and Stravinsky's Firebird (suite). Andrey Boreyko conducts.

Too bad about the Barber - it's a great piece. Now it goes the way of Vaughan Williams' Symphony No. 6 and Martinu's Symphony No. 3; both oh-so-slightly-off-the-beaten-path works were scheduled and then dropped from the orchestra's programs this year. The orchestra doesn't seem to realize that a lot of listeners choose a concert based on repertoire. How else to explain the fact that at least 24 hours after the decision to drop the Barber, the Philadelphia Orchestra website still showed that the Barber will open the concert?

But for novelty, there's still Network for New Music. Most excellent and highly evolved composer Maurice Wright explains his multimedia Darwiniana in the YouTube video below. The piece, along with several others inspired by Darwin, will be premiered Feb. 19 and 21 in a poetry-music collaboration of the American Philosophical Society and Network for New Music. Tickets here.

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