Alternative July Fourth listening. No Sousa is heard in The National Anthems, a choral work by David Lang on the Cantaloupe label. Its text contains lines from the national anthems of every United Nations country, along with Lang's own poetic commentary,
Flourishing Firebird. The Firebird myth didn't begin and end with Stravinsky - rather, it was plucked by him after weaving its way through various cultures. The myth is traced through illustrated books, costume sketches, advertisements, and other material
Requiem for Orlando. Musicians will gather at 3 p.m. Sunday at First Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia, 21st and Walnut Streets, in a musical memorial to victims of last week's mass murder in Orlando. Church music director Andrew Senn will lead musician
Haydn the progressive. If you don't know the piano works of Haydn, you don't know Haydn. You are also missing out on a keyboard progenitor whose idiomatic writing for the instrument, though sometimes glancing back to the baroque, can be heard developing all the way through the best works of Mozart, Schubert, and Beethoven.
Violinist Itzhak Perlman recently took to his Facebook page over a high-profile issue well outside his usual realm: North Carolina House Bill 2, which eliminated various antidiscriminatory legal protections for a range of people, including those who are gay, bisexual, and transgender, and required people to use only restrooms that corresponded with the gender specified on their birth certificates.
Grand memorial. One of the more ambitious projects in the final seasons of the Philadelphia Singers under David Hayes was the 1958 Randall Thompson Requiem, a recording of which, made a year before the 2015 disbanding, is just out now on the Naxos label.