Ear Supply

  • Going for Baroque

    Over the years, the Seattle Chamber Music Society, in either its summer or winter festivals, has almost never included any pre-1750 music. That Seattle has … More »

  • Split Personality

    Plenty of operatic soprano roles provide opportunities for scenery-chewing mood swings, but none go quite so Three Faces of Eve as Norina in Donizetti's Don … More »

  • Ear Supply: Taken to Extremes

    Intending to make his first year with the Seattle Symphony as fresh a start as possible, music director Ludovic Morlot avoided programming any music too … More »

  • A Night to Remember

    As one Titanic survivor recalled, "The way the band kept playing was a noble thing . . . the last I saw of [it], when I was floating out … More »

  • Go East, Young Man

    Lou Harrison died in 2003 at a Denny's in Lafayette, Indiana—a mundane end for a composer who unprecedentedly opened American ears to music from the … More »

  • Ear Supply: Heart-Shaped Bach

    It's the mood more than the music of the Seattle sound that's evoked by Texas composer Scott McAllister's 1996 Concerto X for clarinet and band—"heavily … More »

  • Ear Supply: I Will Survive

    Composer David Diamond (1915–2005) was always an outspoken advocate of traditional musical ideals—expression, communication, craftsmanship—during decades of questioning experimentation from American music's avant-garde wing. His … More »

  • Uncaged

    John Cage's 1992 score for FOUR6 asks each player to choose 12 separate sounds, and then simply lists a series of start and stop times … More »

  • Ear Supply: Fausts of Fury

    The challenge, and thrill, of Hector Berlioz's 1846 The Damnation of Faust—not quite an opera, not quite a symphony—is that you can do anything you … More »

  • Ear Supply: A Change Is Gonna Come

    The basic recipe, time-tested and crowd-pleasing, of the Seattle Chamber Music Society's summer festival remains the same, but it's been undergoing some tweaks over the … More »

  • Ear Supply: Reading Between the Lines

    Composer John Cage not only made pieces of music by subjecting sounds to chance operations, he did the same to prose—snipping, shuffling, and collAging old … More »

  • Ear Supply: In Memoriam

    The Seattle Symphony's first concert after September 11, 2001 was the season-opening gala on Saturday the 15th. Associate conductor Alastair Willis was on the podium … More »

  • Clicks and Clouds

    It sounds like a joke, and certainly the title is tongue-in-cheek: György Ligeti composed his Poème symphonique not for a big, colorful French Impressionist–style orchestra, … More »

  • Pole to Pole

    Wacky as its plot is, Verdi's Un giorno di regno ("King for a Day") does seem to contain a grain of actual historical truth. Apparently … More »

  • Ear Supply: Java Jive

    The unheralded godfather of minimalism, Canadian-born composer Colin McPhee (1900–64) became so captivated by a recording of Balinese music that he moved there to study … More »

  • Ear Supply: Oh L'Amour

    Kaleidoscopic chaos and quiet, pointillist meditativeness. Lurid and stentorian brass chorales. Tremulous, lubricious melodies that Puccini would have found a bit overripe. Instruments imitating twittering … More »

  • Ear Supply: The Last Word

    When in 1979 The New Yorker's Andrew Porter suggested that Elliott Carter was by consensus the world's greatest living composer, there was pushback. Some find … More »

  • Ear Supply: Master and Commander

    If there were any artist (anything at all, really) who could possibly persuade me to give Christianity a fling, it’d be Haydn. There’s no more … More »

  • Ear Supply: C is for Celebration

    The piano starts: tinktinktinktinktinktinktinktinktinktinktinktinktinktinktinktink. In a few seconds the rest of the ensemble joins in, half as fast: bRAAH, bRAAH, bRAAH, bRAAH, bRAAH, bRAAH, bRAAH, … More »

  • Duets for One

    Operas for one singer are not unheard of (Seattle Opera’s staging one, Poulenc’s La voix humaine, in May), but the triple achievement of Hope Wechkin’s … More »