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30.8.09

In Brief

Here is your regular Sunday selection of links to good things in Blogville and Beyond.

  • It's official: someone has placed an evil curse on Joyce DiDonato. After breaking her leg in the middle of a performance of Barber of Seville, the lovely and talented mezzo-soprano has gone on to a performance at the Edinburgh Festival with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. During the concert, in Usher Hall, just newly renovated to the tune of £25 million, a fuse blew and the hall was veiled in darkness -- just as Joyce was singing. Does anyone know a good witch doctor or exorcist or something? [The Scotsman]

  • Bob Shingleton proposes separating the BBC from the Proms, in a hard-hitting piece of journalism. [On an Overgrown Path]

  • Wow, the possibilities for my next fishing vacation back home in Indiana just got a lot more interesting after a boy catches a 13-inch piranha in the Wabash River. [Boing Boing]

  • After making waves for writing an op-ed in the International Herald Tribune, in which he publicly spoke out against the Star Chamber ethos at major piano competitions, Michael Johnson has published a more extended article on the issue, complete with quotations from pianists and others involved in competitions. Certainly, the absolute least that could be done would be to make the jury process as transparent as possible, making juror votes and scoring public, diversifying the membership of juries, perhaps keeping the identity of the performers unknown to the jurors with a screen. Critics can play their part as well, by reviewing the performances at competitions, to offer an unbiased assessment of the playing that could be compared to the official results. [Facts and Arts]

1 comment:

Henry Zhang said...

That last article is excellent.

A reassessement of the competition format is long overdue.

My son, who is a young aspiring pianist, always laments the current system and the injustices it breeds.

Thank you for bringing that to our attention, Charles.