Blog Posts on Arts and Culture

News, unfortunate scandal, and inspiration

RPO IN THE NEWS

Former RPO Music Director Christopher Seaman is returning to Rochester the first week of March to conduct the RPO, mark his 70th birthday, and to celebrate the release of the RPO’s latest harmonia mundi recording, featuring Ralph Vaughan Williams’ A London Symphony and Serenade to Music.

Runner's high

A friend from church gave me an old treadmill which she described apologetically as "state-of-the-art 1985."

“It’s as loud as a helicopter,” she warned, “but we just replaced the belt.”

Never mind that the belt is as narrow as a balance beam, get this -- the speed adjustment knob goes from turtle to rabbit.  I love that knob more than words can say.

The Doctor and the Diva

Nutritionists will tell you it’s dangerous to shop for food when you’re hungry and more likely to wander into Twinkieland.  For me, the real peril lurks in Wegmans’ book aisle, where on a recent Friday afternoon, I picked up The Doctor and the Diva, the debut novel by Adrienne McDonnell.   “Some books just naturally enslave you,” read the Washington Post blub on

Battle on the ice

I'm so glad we're finally getting a real blast of winter weather in New York State!

In this film clip from Alexander Nevsky you have to wonder, how do those guys stand in the cold without shivering?

La ci darem la mano - Variations on Sinatra and Mozart

Which is stranger: Danny Kaye conducting the New York Philharmonic or Frank Sinatra singing opera?

Check it out here in the movie “It Happened in Brooklyn” (1947), Sinatra sings in “La ci darem la mano” – a duet from Mozart’s opera Don Giovanni, where the Don seduces Zerlina.


Mystery Creature Week - updated January 13

It’s Mystery Creature Week early mornings on Classical 91.5, with performances evoking animals from Lang Lang, the New London Orchestra, and the Boston Pops.  See if you can identify the mystery animal at 6:40 a.m.

New beginnings and the Jester conducts

Hi! Happy New Year!  Since it’s a time for new beginnings, perhaps it’s time for me actually to start keeping in touch and writing some things here. I’m not quite sure what it will be. Brenda describes it as a sandbox. A sandbox is a much more inviting notion than a blank page. Hopefully you can jump in and play too when you have the time.

No more procrastinating; let’s get started.

Here’s a cool new thing I learned this weekend. Danny Kaye was a conductor. Danny Kaye, the Court Jester, conducted the New York Philharmonic and other major orchestras.

The Best Music of 2011



When first considering the best music of this year, I posed the question to the facebook community. After all the music I had heard over the year, it was surprising how much of it I hadn’t, and how much of that shows up as favorites to those who have heard it.