Category: BPO in the News

Christmas is Still Coming, Artvoice

Christmas is Still Coming

In the not-to-be-missed category are the BPO’s two offerings of their Classic Christmas program in Kleinhans Music Hall on Friday, December 6 at 10:30am and on Saturday, December 7 at 8pm. During the past several holiday seasons, BPO music director JoAnn Falletta would conduct this pair of more traditional classical music concerts, while associate conductor Matthew Kraemer would conduct the Holiday Pops concerts. Reversing the conducting roles, former BPO associate conductor Ron Spigelman returns to conduct the Classic Christmas concerts while JoAnn Falletta will handle the Holiday Pops duties.

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The Castellani Andriaccio Duo talks with WNED’s Peter Hall

The co-directors of the June 2014 JoAnn Falletta International Guitar Concerto competition – the Castellani Andriaccio Guitar Duo – team up with Maestra Falletta Friday morning 12/6 at 10:30am and Saturday night at 8:00pm at Kleinhans Music Hall to perform music by Vivaldi as part of the BPO’s “Classical Christmas.” The Duo told WNED that the difficulty of guitar concerti can be likened to a hockey stick. Listen now.

BPO Guest Performer cut her own musical path, Business First

Despite her strong musical background and training — that included studying on Saturdays at the Manhattan School of Music from the age of 9 until her high school graduation seven years later — Dinnerstein had a limited following until she self-financed her first disc, Bach’s “Goldberg Variations” in 2005.o produce the disc, Dinnerstein had to raise $15,000 and even then, she only had enough money to have 100 copies produced.

“I really wasn’t sure, exactly, what I was going to do with them,” Dinnerstein said.

Some were sent out to bookers and promoters along classical music insiders. Through word-of-mouth, an Israeli investor heard the disc and was impressed enough to become her financial backer. That led the Telarc label officially releasing the “Goldberg Variations” disc and seeing it climb to the No. 1 position on Billboard’s Classical Music Chart. It was then cited as one of the top classical discs of 2007. Read the rest of the article.

BPO visitors play Vivaldi with style, vigor, Buffalo News

Two vivid personalities join the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra on stage this weekend at Kleinhans Music Hall. One is the Mexican conductor Carlos Miguel Prieto. He is charm personified. The other is violinist Anne Akiko Meyers, playing Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons” on a priceless violin.

Meyers is a wonderful player. To be honest, though, I don’t know who I really came to see – her, or her violin.

She has a variety of venerable violins at her disposal, lent to her by philanthropists. Her latest acquisition, the one I believe she is playing this weekend, is a Guarneri del Gesu that was once owned by the 19th-century virtuoso Henri Vieuxtemps. Her bio in the BPO program states that it is “considered by many to be the finest violin being performed on today.”

BPO tribute to Marvin Hamlisch is a singular sensation, Buffalo News

Buffalo needed a tribute to Marvin Hamlisch. I think we all miss him.

He became the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra’s principal pops conductor at a time when our town was still smarting from the loss of his predecessor, Doc Severinsen. Severinsen had left because of a management dispute, which was a pity – but then along came Hamlisch, picking things up and taking us in new directions. Marvin Hamlisch, who wrote the music for “A Chorus Line!” It was fun just being in the same hall with him.

Now it’s the laughter that we remember, when we remember the way we were.

That was one of the songs in Saturday’s BPO’s “One Singular Sensation: A Tribute to the Music of Marvin Hamlisch.” It was a touching tribute to the maestro we learned to love.

Three singers were on hand. One was Jodi Benson, the voice of Disney’s Little Mermaid, whom Hamlisch brought here on several occasions. Another, to the crowd’s delight, was Donna McKechnie, who created the role of Cassie in “A Chorus Line.” You don’t get bigger in Broadway than that. McKechnie looks lovely and her voice is bright and clear.

The third was the great Doug LaBrecque, who like Benson was a Hamlisch favorite and a regular at Kleinhans Music Hall in the Hamlisch era. Read the rest of the article.

Rolling Stones get the BPO treatment

When legions of snarling Rolling Stones fans first dropped the needle on 1971’s “Can’t You Hear Me Knocking,” it’s a safe bet that few listeners settled in amid Keith Richards’ opening guitar lick, turned to a buddy and said, “You know what this song could use? An oboe.”

But, don’t tell that to the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, whose BPO Rocks Series steered the orchestral ensemble into the vast catalog of Mick Jagger and Richards with Friday night’s Hot Rocks-heavy “The Music of the Rolling Stones” inside Kleinhans Music Hall.

Now, is it unprecedented for a band known for rock mayhem to be rearranged by musicians more versed in Mozart than Mick Taylor? Absolutely not. This was the BPO’s third Rock Series performance of the season, following their rollicking takes on the work of 1970s legends Queen and ABBA. The show’s architect, Brett Havens, boasts traditional work with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, but also has served as maestro for seven symphonic rock programs. In September, he rolled his alternative arrangement chops into town to lead the BPO’s bassoon-laden assault on Queen classics like “Bohemian Rhapsody.” Read the rest of the article.

BPO Rocks singer found his future lay beyond the Yellow Brick Road, Buffalo News

It’s not easy, being a rock legend. Especially if you have to be more than one.

Last month at Kleinhans Music Hall, Brody Dolyniuk took on the challenge of portraying Freddie Mercury in the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra’s acclaimed tribute to Queen.

And he’s far from finished. Dolyniuk is returning to Kleinhans on Friday, this time as Mick Jagger in the BPO’s toast to the Rolling Stones.

How does he do it?

“I enjoy being versatile and doing different things,” he said on the phone. “I can jump from Freddie’s style to Mick’s style to Robert Plant’s style.” Oh, right, he also starred in the BPO’s tributes to Led Zeppelin. And the Who. Read the rest of the article.

Swan Song for BPO Associate Director, Business First

Matthew Kraemer, the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra associate director for the past four seasons, will be leaving the organization next summer.

The decision, Kraemer, said was a bittersweet one.

“It is with very mixed emotions,” he said. “My son was born here. I’ve had a great time here. It is tough to leave Buffalo and the orchestra.”

As associate conductor, Kraemer worked a diverse schedule ranging from working with the orchestra on traditional classical programs as well as its Pops series. Kraemer also oversaw the BPO’s educational outreach initiative that helped the orchestra connect with high school and elementary school students from around the region.

Kraemer said demands on his own schedule prompted his decision to leave the orchestra after it finishes its summer 2014 schedule. He will be based out of Cleveland, his wife’s hometown. Read More.

Jodi Benson remembers Marvin Hamlisch, WNED

When Mickey Mouse gave Jodi Benson the “Keys to the Magic Kingdom” her life was changed magically, forever, but it might never have happened without the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra’s beloved, late, Pops Conductor, Marvin Hamlisch. This Saturday, November 9th at 8:00pm at Kleinhans Music Hall, Jodi Benson and others join the BPO in a tribute to Marvin. In this extended interview with exclusive web content, Jodi Benson remembers when. Listen to the interview.

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