RPO

New RPO season announced!

The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra released its 2008-09 season yesterday. I'm sure the local paper will publish all the dates and details.

For quick reference, I've created this handy excitement level ratings chart for you. It's not in chronological order, and the opinions expressed do not in any way represent WXXI, its underwriters, or contributing supporters.

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Robert DiLutis

Welcome to my blog! I try to write something interesting about music every day.

Look for RPO clarinetist Robert DiLutis on tonight's broadcast of the New York Philharmonic's broadcast from North Korea on WXXI-TV at 9:00 p.m.

Robert DiLutisRobert DiLutisSimon's windowSimon's window

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North Korea at night

Check out this picture of North Korea taken by satellite at night. It says a lot about the country’s insular, repressive regime. This morning I got the chance to interview clarinetist Robert Dilutis of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra. He’s traveling as a sub with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra.

The interview.

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RPO clarinetist in North Korea

Word on the street is that Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra clarinetist Robert DiLutis is in North Korea with the New York Philharmonic. He was tapped to sub for someone who couldn’t go.

On Tuesday, the orchestra will play in Pyongyang, the North Korean capital. This is the first visit by an American cultural group to that country since President Bush lumped it into the “axis of evil.” According to the State Department, President Bush is encouraging the visit.

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State of bliss

A decade ago, when guitarist Sharon Isbin recorded the lullaby "Cancion de Cuna," by Cuban composer Leo Brower, she wrote that she was in a state of bliss, remembering her experience of "floating down the Napo River in a dugout canoe with piranhas, electric eels, and glistening crocodiles afoot."

This week, when she plays the same piece with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, she'll hear it in a whole new light. Read my concert preview in this week's City newspaper here:

http://www.rochestercitynewspaper.com/music/articles/CLASSIC...

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Cellist wonders what to do next

I discovered a blog kept by a cellist living in Houston, studying at Rice University. He's preparing to audition in Rochester for a spot with the RPO. He writes:

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facebook is evil

I was going to write a blog today that started with the line, “facebook is evil.”

But I need more time on that subject. Check back later.

Instead, here's an interesting news item about the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra.

Less than 1 percent of the repertory that orchestras played last year was composed by a black or Latino composer. The RPO has joined a new, national consortium of orchestras to commission major orchestral works from minority composers.

It’s enigmatically named the Sphinx Commissioning Consortium.

Read more here:

http://crainsdetroit.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080128...

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Reactionaries

On Saturday night, the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra opened with Fantasia on an Ostinato by John Corigliano, a short piece based on a famous repetitive passage by Ludwig van Beethoven (the second movement of Symphony No. 7.)

I loved it, but others reacted differently.

A Rochester blogger who went to the concert with her husband wrote,

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Let's Imagine

The RPO’s Annual Meeting, Having Been Held in Rochester’s Opulent Eastman Theatre, Later Discussed by The Busts of Bach and Beethoven Over the Exits

Johann: Grüß dich! That brass quintet, sehr gut! Don’t you think, my old friend?

Ludwig: Ja, ja, I almost heard it! I think it was almost as compelling as the players’ rousing performance of The Firebird by the Russian Wild One, Herr Stravinsky. (He pauses, leans over, whispering) But I believe the young man who spoke afterward, Herr Owens, may have a Napoleonic complex. Did you catch all his mumbling about fame and glory, making the RPO famous around the world?

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music news miscellany

This afternoon at 4:00 p.m., the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra reveals artistic and financial data during an annual meeting. Check back for more on this later.

The U.S. government issued a 2007 patent for colored polymer instrument mouthpieces for brass players, and these are starting to pop up in instrument cases all over Western New York. Prices range from $21 for a trumpet mouthpiece to $32 for a tuba mouthpiece.

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