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Letter from the Editor

Essays

Added 20.05.2017

Sydneysiders desire to have a house with a harbour or ocean view.

Added 12.05.2017

There have been some noteworthy examples of successful human ageing in the press recently.

Added 10.05.2017

The sweeping victory of Emmanuel Macron in the recent French presidential election should not eclipse the result of the South Korean presidential race, in which the human rights lawyer Moon Jae-in won a decisive victory.  Indeed the South Korean outcome may well

Added 02.05.2017

OXFORD – Artificial Intelligence is the next technological frontier, and it has the potential to make or break the world order. The AI revolution could pull the “bottom billion” out of poverty and transform dysfunctional institutions, or it could entrench injustice and increase inequality.

Added 29.04.2017
It is a warm autumn morning, and I am walking through downtown Mountain View, Calif., when I see it. A small vehicle that looks like a cross between a golf cart and a Jetson-esque, bubble-topped spaceship glides to a stop at an intersection.
Added 27.04.2017

When we hear about the horrors of industrial livestock farming – the pollution, the waste, the miserable lives of billions of animals – it is hard not to feel

Added 24.04.2017



Left: Henry Taylor, “The Times Thay Aint a Changing Fast Enough!” (2016);
Added 22.04.2017

April 22 is Earth Day, one of the world’s largest environmental movements against climate change. It’s a time when people around the world come together to defend the environment against the impact of humans.

Added 14.04.2017

In the run-up to Easter, it is customary for Egypt’s Coptic Christians to go to church every evening.

Added 14.04.2017

Google could lose as much as $750 million because of a boycott by advertisers, according to Nomura Research.

Added 14.04.2017

Image 20170329 8593 13p35fo Alamosa Photovoltaic Plan, south-central Colorado.
Added 12.04.2017

A record-breaking 8m students will graduate from Chinese universities in 2017.

Added 07.04.2017

The idea of a life lived modestly is gaining traction. Ten years ago, Samantha Weinberg, a mother of two young children, spent a year not shopping.

Added 06.04.2017

What if every citizen had a guaranteed income, regardless of whether they are at work? In an age of austerity and the rolling back of social policies, this idea may sound radical – but it is gaining momentum.

Literary Essays

Music Reviews

Added 19.02.2015
As a long-time West Sider, I've happily traipsed through the bowels of Brooklyn for my last few posts in pursuit of the most happening events in classical music, theater and opera. But sometimes, as L. Frank Baum and Judy remind us, there is truly no place like home.
Added 19.02.2015
When American song writer Jerome Kern announced he was going to write a show based on Marco Polo, an enthusiastic reporter asked, “Mr. Kern, your new musical is based on an Italian who crossed the Alps and then the Leviathan desert, got to Mongolia, then China and finally returned home to Italy.
Added 12.02.2015
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The world premiere of Snowstorm, a 20-minute feast of orchestral colors and cl

Added 12.02.2015

On Friday night (February 6) at Keller Auditorium, Sandra Piques Eddy gave one of the best performances of Carmen that anyone can possibly imagine. She captivated Portland Opera’s audience with a tantalizing combination of emotions that made Carmen absolutely bewitching.

Added 02.02.2015
Leonard Bernstein said, “The nineteenth century dies hard.” By that he meant his American concert-going audience would rather hear the lush, romantic music of over a hundred years ago —Tchaikovsky, Brahms and Verdi — than the angular, anguished music of the twentieth —Stravinsky, Schoenberg, S
Added 25.01.2015

I left jazz behind many years ago when I got hooked on Handel. The harmonies, the bounce and the melodies of the old German seemed to hold much more promise. I remember boasting to a friend, “I even have The Messiah in English.” I had a lot to learn. 

Added 20.01.2015

As composer Morton Feldman enjoys a comeback in contemporary music circles today, a Swiss arts and design academy has published a new tribute to him along with a CD featuring an ethereal interpretation of Palais de Mari, Feldman’s last solo piano work.

Added 17.01.2015

French pianist Hélène Grimaud returned to Bordeaux Friday night (Jan.

Added 17.01.2015

One would think that a reliable warhorse like “Tosca” might be a dull affair because it is performed so often, but the most recent Seattle Opera production shows that Puccini’s masterpiece still can grip audiences in the gut.

Added 15.01.2015
Even casual fans of classical music know of Ludwig van Beethoven’s deafness.  But could his hearing loss actually have been his greatest advantage as a musician?

Maybe so, says Leif Ove Andsnes, the highly acclaimed Norwegian pianist touring th

Added 02.01.2015

The one thing the blogosphere does not need is another article about trendy, hip, ironic, facially-haired Brooklyn. In fact some recent articles now toll the death knell of the borough, saying that Brooklyn is passé; it seems that Queens is the new Brooklyn.

Added 28.12.2014

A powerful new recording of Rachmaninov’s familiar Sonata for Cello and Piano in G Minor Op. 19 (Light and Shadow, Becsta Records) manages to take this rich Russian music to new heights. It ranks comfortably alongside several impressive readings by other major cellists.

Added 12.12.2014

Marc-André Hamelin, Canadian-born and now residing in the Boston suburbs, has just completed a highly successful two-concert series in Bordeaux, playing the Beethoven piano concerto No. 4 including his own cadenza.

Added 11.12.2014

Canadian-born pianist Marc-André Hamelin kept a Bordeaux audience riveted Wednesday evening (Dec. 10) by his super-sensitive rendering of a familiar warhorse, the Beethoven piano concerto No. 4. Familiar, yes, but Bordeaux had never heard it performed quite so perfectly.

Added 10.12.2014

Canadian-born virtuoso pianist Marc-André Hamelin, looking relaxed and happy about his debut in Bordeaux this week, took time out between rehearsals at the city’s new concert hall, l’Auditorium, to talk about his past and what is coming next.

Added 29.11.2014

As any honest critic will tell you (if you can find one), writing about contemporary piano  is a long and thorny process requiring multiple hearings or multiple arguments with the composer.

Added 27.11.2014

You don’t have to be Irish to fall in love with music from the Emerald Isle.

Added 20.11.2014

The fifth annual Bordeaux piano festival, l’Esprit du Piano, concludes nine days of keyboard music on Friday Nov. 21 with Henri Barda playing works by Mozart, Brahms and Chopin.

Added 18.11.2014

Conducting is essentially a phenomenon associated with Western classical music. As a rule, rock and jazz bands do not employ a conductor unless they are teaming up with a symphony orchestra.

Movie Reviews