Category Archives: Classical Music News

2016 Winners: Met Opera Mid-South Region Auditions

The auditions for the Metropolitan Opera National Council Mid-South Region was held on Saturday, February 6, 2016, at the Germantown Performing Arts Center in Germantown, TN.

The first place winner who advances to the MONC semi-finals in New York next month is baritone Hunter Enoch. Enoch received a prize of $5800. Enoch is a Tennessee native who studied at the University of Cincinnati’s College-Conservatory of Music where he took his Bachelor of Music and Master of Music.

The second place winner was soprano Jessica Faselt, who was a winner from the Middle/East Tennessee District.

There was a tie for the third place prize:  Emmett O’Hanlon, baritone, and Jacqueline Piccolino, soprano. An Encouragement Award went to Nicolette Book, soprano.

The judges were Brian Speck from the Houston Grand Opera and Melissa Wegner of the MET National Council.

(L to R) Nicolette Book, Jacqueline Piccolino, Emmett O'Hanlon, judges Melissa Wegner and Brian Speck, 2nd place - Jessica Faselt, 1st place - Hunter Enoch (Photo courtesy of Metropolitan Opera National Council - Mid-South Region)

(L to R) Nicolette Book, Jacqueline Piccolino, Emmett O’Hanlon, judges Melissa Wegner and Brian Speck, 2nd place – Jessica Faselt, 1st place – Hunter Enoch
(Photo and info courtesy of Metropolitan Opera National Council – Mid-South Region)

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Filed under Classical Music News, Opera

In the Knoxville Mercury: Most Memorable Knoxville Classical Music Performances

Looking for my annual list of Most Memorable Classical Music Performances in Knoxville for 2015? Head on down to your nearest Knoxville Mercury stand or box and pick up this week’s copy***. And, while you are at it, please patronize the Mercury advertisers who make independent journalism in Knoxville possible.

Thanks for reading and HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

***If your stand is out of the Knoxville Mercury, it’s on the website here.

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2015 Big Ears Festival is Here!

Mercury3-1_72pxThe 2015 Big Ears Festival, Knoxville’s burgeoning grouping of international avant garde, indie-classical, and other genre-busters, arrives this weekend, March 27-29, in a host of venues in downtown Knoxville. The Kronos Quartet are the artists-in-residence joined by a huge array of other artists including Laurie Anderson, Terry Riley, Max Richter, Tyondai Braxton, Ben Frost, tUnE-yArDs
, Jamie xx, A Winged Victory For The Sullen, Bryce Dessner, Jim Jarmusch and SQÜRL, Demdike Stare, Wu Man, the Bad Plus, Bill Frisell & Bill Morrison, Hildur Guðnadóttir, and more. There’s also a huge film component in the festival, as well, curated by Jim Jarmusch.

If you can’t make it to the festival—and especially if you are coming—check out the special section in this week’s Knoxville Mercury. (There’s a special pull-out-and-carry section for readers of the print addition).

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The Knoxville Mercury’s First Classical Music Column

Knoxville’s newest alt-weekly, the Knoxville Mercury, launched on Thursday, March 12, much to the relief of Knoxville readers…and certain writers. You can read my inaugural column in the online version here. Upcoming issues will contain a lot of coverage of the Big Ears Festival on March 27-29, so check back often.

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Filed under Classical Music News, Miscellaneous Commentary

2015 Met Opera Mid-South Region Audition Winners

Rich Copley at Copious Notes has the story on the 2015 Mid-South regional Metropolitan Opera competition.

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2015 Met Opera Mid-South Region Finals on Saturday

Update: Winners

A field of 12 singers emerged from the district competitions in the Metropolitan Opera National Council auditions for the Mid-South Region–4 sopranos, 1 mezzo-soprano, 1 countertenor, 3 tenors, 1 baritone,   1 bass-baritone, and 1 bass. The regional competition is being held  Saturday, February 21, 2015, at Memorial Hall, University of Kentucky, in Lexington, KY.  The district winners competing in the regionals are:

Arkansas District
Ray Chenez, countertenor
Cody Luan, tenor
Huanhuan Ma, soprano

Kentucky District
Rebecca Farley, soprano
Christopher Kenny, baritone
Matthew Turner, bass

Middle/E. Tennessee District
Todd Barnhill, tenor
Stephen Martin, tenor
Amanda Palmeiro, mezzo-Soprano

West Tennesee District
Laetitia Grimaldi, soprano
Josh Quinn, bass-baritone
Amanda Walden, soprano

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At Arts Knoxville: Most Memorable Classical Music Performances (Knoxville) of 2014

What a year! My list of the Most Memorable Classical Music Performances (in Knoxville, that is) for 2014 is online at Arts Knoxville.

Thanks for reading.

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A New Weekly for Knoxville: ‘The Knoxville Mercury’

The demise of the newsweekly Metro Pulse at the hands of its parent company, E.W. Scripps, two months ago, was painful for both its staff and its Knoxville readership. For many—and there is actual evidence to support this—Metro Pulse was the voice of the Knoxville downtown’s miraculous revitalization and of Knoxville’s cultural scene. Its closure seemed to leave a gaping hole in Knoxville’s life and a dead-end for many of Knoxville’s small business advertisers.

Happily, those two months were not without significant progress being made on an entity to take the place of Metro Pulse, both in spirit and reality. Participants in the most recent staffing of Metro Pulse have joined with some dedicated and interested parties in Knoxville to create a somewhat rare, but not unheard of, enterprise—the Knoxville History Project—a new non-profit organization that will support a for-profit weekly newspaper to be called the Knoxville Mercury. The goal is to “ensure the new enterprise’s long-term sustainability with a combination of public, private, and commercial revenue sources.” (Check the Knoxville History Project link above for information on its other goals and activities.)

Jack Neely, who had served as Associate Editor of Metro Pulse for most of its life, will be the Executive Director of the Knoxville History Project and will continue to write his immensely popular column in the new paper. Coury Turczyn will return as Editor and Matthew Everett will return as A&E Editor. Tricia Bateman has come on as Art Director; Jerry Collins will be the Business Manager.

Most of the contributing writers will return, including yours truly as the Knoxville Mercury‘s classical music critic.

The paper is aiming for a mid-February first issue.

Because the project will depend on a variety of revenue sources, a Kickstarter campaign is underway to get the first year off to a start. You can visit that Kickstarter page here.

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Vienna State Opera Offers Streaming Service

The Vienna State Opera’s new streaming service has a wonderfully descriptive video explaining the program–

 

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Delingerfest, the Work of Larry Delinger, Begins Oct 24

Larry Delinger

Larry Delinger

Check out the information on DELINGERFEST, a program of events centered on the music of composer Larry Delinnger running from 10/24 thru 11/16, at ArtsKnoxville.

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Filed under Classical Music News, Opera

At Arts Knoxville: A Catharsis and a KSO Review

My review of the weekend’s KSO performance (and a cathartic explanation of events) can be found at my new Arts Knoxville blog. Thanks for reading.

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Filed under Classical Music News, Performance Reviews

Alt-Weekly Metro Pulse Shut Down by E.W. Scripps

Metro Pulse, the alt-weekly newspaper that carries my classical/new music commentary in Knoxville, has been shut down by its parent company, E.W. Scripps.

At least for the short term, local reviews will be hosted at:

http://artsknoxville.wordpress.com/

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