Kirill Petrenko? Didn't the Berlin Philharmonic announcement Monday mean Vassily Petrenko? No, Europe's great orchestra has elected the lesser-known Petrenko to succeed Simon Rattle in 2018 - though he barely made the dark-horse lists in the months of heated speculation that often centered on the acclaimed, Dresden-based Christian Thielemann.
A Mendelssohn Club concert? An edgy new work by the Leah Stein Dance Company? Or a guided meditation? With Turbine, the new site-specific dance/choral work premiering this weekend at the Fairmount Water Works, all three descriptions apply. Fifty-eight choristers and 18 dancers will perform among the trees, near the gazebo and other Water Works sites - while also (when possible) taking the audience with them.
Though not inclined to look back, the Crossing choir and its founder/director, Donald Nally, have roughly 10 years of mutual history, which explains why Sunday's opening of the annual Month of Moderns festival at the Presbyterian Church of Chestnut Hill was often retrospective, if never tame.
There's nothing like a physical ordeal to bring people together. Literally. Holding hands with arms raised, almost like an opera bow, a trio of runners from the Philadelphia Orchestra crossed the finish line of Paris' Saint-Germain-en-Laye half-marathon Sunday morning.
"Yay! We're home!" said Philadelphia Orchestra cellist Yumi Kendall after a sound-check rehearsal at the Musikverein. Though 4,301 miles from Philadelphia, Vienna's famous hall was the launch site for so much now-standard orchestral repertoire, from Brahms to Bruckner to Mahler, that it can't help but feel like a home, even to those who've never performed here before, am
When the moment of romantic consummation finally arrives between the main characters of Stephen Sondheim's Passion, the man and woman who have been pondering, dismissing, and obsessing over each other are standing on opposite sides of the bedroom in an odd state of wonder.
No commemorative speeches. No plaques. No tear jerking. Artistic director David Hayes barely announced the encore at the farewell concert of the Philadelphia Singers, going out of business after 43 years, but let the occasion speak with music, the best performance coming last - Rachmaninoff's Vespers, the "Rejoice O Virgin" section.
The Philadelphia Orchestra's dress-to-kill program on its soon-to-start European tour was previewed Wednesday at Verizon Hall in what was also the close of Yannick Nézet-Séguin's third season as music director. The show illustrated his way of taking smart, middling chances and drawing the best from those around him.
Though Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia began its 50th-anniversary season amid fears within the music community that there may not be a 51st, the official half-century celebration arrived Sunday at Verizon Hall with many visiting dignitaries and an air of solidity, both artistic and financial. Enjoyment was buoyed by relief.
At what point does music become more of a tourist experience than art? Philadelphia Orchestra conductor-in-residence Cristian Macelaru walked all over such not-so-fine lines on Thursday at the Kimmel Center in a winningly idiosyncratic program bookended by two travelogues in sound from his native Romania - with folk elements cleaned and polished to a high gloss.
Three of the bigger musical personalities to come out of Astral Artists in recent years became a temporary piano trio Sunday afternoon in a concert titled "Encore!" Its significance wasn't lost on the audience at Trinity Center for Urban Life, which was packed despite the sublime weather. The program was what you'd expect from these strong-minded musicians - in that you really didn't know what to expect.
Operas written at the dawn of the art form have blank-slate possibilities: Presented here on Wednesday under John Eliot Gardiner, Monteverdi's 1607 Orfeo was a time-travel experience from a world we can barely imagine, while also presenting a viable future model for how special-interest pieces can live outside the opera house.
David Patrick Stearns is a classical music critic and columnist for the Philadelphia Inquirer.