by Daniel Hathaway
ONLINE MTT TRIBUTE:
The celebration of Michael Tilson Thomas’ retirement from the San Francisco Symphony after 25 years was supposed to be a big public blowout, but all of that changed with the pandemic. Instead, MTT25: An Online Tribute, takes a look back at “25 years of memories with the San Francisco Symphony’s iconic Music Director, Michael Tilson Thomas. Hosted by vocalists Audra McDonald and Susan Graham, the virtual event showcases personal stories, memories, and performances by a star-studded guest list of friends and musical colleagues of Michael Tilson Thomas.” Watch the 75-minute tribute here.
Tilson Thomas brought the San Francisco Symphony to Severance Hall in 2014, and most recently guest conducted The Cleveland Orchestra last February. The photo by Roger Mastroianni shows the conductor with Daniil Trifonov and The Cleveland Orchestra in March of 2018.
PIANO CLEVELAND ANNOUNCEMENT TOMORROW:
On Wednesday, July 1 at 10:00 am, PianoCleveland will announce the names of 30 pianists who will compete in its Virtu(al)oso competition from July 30 to August 9. Watch the live announcement here.
TODAY ON THE WEB AND AIRWAVES:
Apollo’s Fire has released Episode 14 in its Music For the Soul Series. “Love and Jazz from 1603 (and thereabouts)” features performances from “L’Amore,” its Valentine’s Day program from last February, with love songs by Monteverdi and Barbara Strozzi, “as well as pairs of violinists in flirtatious instrumental duets by Vivaldi and Porpora.” Watch here.
Lunchtime with The Cleveland Orchestra on WCLV 104.9 Ideastream includes a Johann Strauss Jr. polka, Brahms’ Symphony No. 2, and one of Wagner’s Wesendonck songs with soprano Measha Brueggergosman. Wagner continues this evening with a 1989 Die Walküre from the MET Opera archives with a star-studded cast: Hildegard Behrens, Jessye Norman, Christa Ludwig, Gary Lakes, James Morris, and Kurt Moll. See our Concert Listings for details.
On June 30, 1958, Finnish conductor Esa-Pekka Salonen was born in Helsinki. Music Director Designate of the San Francisco Symphony, and Music Director Emeritus of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Salonen considered himself primarily as a composer (he took up conducting, he said, to guarantee that his works would be performed), but his fate was sealed when he stepped in at the last minute for Michael Tilson Thomas for Mahler’s Third Symphony in London.
Click here to watch a later performance of Mahler 3 with the Philharmonia Orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall in London, when Salonen returned in October 2017 to the scene of his earlier triumph.
And on this date in 1987, Catalan composer Federico Mompou died in Barcelona. A miniaturist trained in Paris, his piano works and songs are characterized by simplicity and elegance. British pianist Benjamin Grosvenor plays Mompou’s Paisajes in this video recorded at the studios of WGBH in Boston, and Mompou’s Musica Callada (“Silent Music”) inspired a music video.
The pianist, Jenny Lin, who has also recorded a CD with all 28 of the short pieces in Mompu’s collection, and included two of them on her NPR Tiny Desk Concert, has performed in Cleveland on the Signature Series at Lorain County Community College, on the Cleveland Contemporary Players Artist in Residency Series at Cleveland State University, on the Kent Keyboard Series, and at the Baldwin Wallace Bach Festival, but hasn’t been heard in Northeast Ohio since 2012. Someone should invite her back when live concerts resume.