More of the Best

Richard Egarr. Photo by Nan Melville

The listings will continue until taste improves…

At the New York Classical Review, my colleagues Eric Simpson and David Wright, and I have our choices for the best classical performances of the calendar year. The top spot is Eric’s pick for The Exterminating Angel. The critics were wild about this, but I have a dissenting viewpoint that will be part of a Web Exclusive at the Brooklyn Rail; you’ll be able to read it starting early 2018.

You’ll see my picks are weighted heavily toward early music. I explained that in an introduction, edited out, that I reproduce here:

2017 was an odd year in classical music performances. The range and depth of talent in—and coming through—this metropolis leads one to expect that superior interpretations and concert experiences will always be norm. But this calendar year, there were so few outstanding events in the standard repertory, and so few memorable premieres, that they can be seen as an idiosyncratic set of mountains breaking out of a flat landscape.

The exception was in early music—it seemed there was one deeply enriching, enlightening, and beautiful performance after another. So pride of place as the single best concert of 2017 goes to:

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gtra1n

I'm a composer and musician, and I write about music—I do that here, for the New York Classical Review, at the Brooklyn Rail (I edit the music section there) and any place else that will have me, like New Music Box and Music & Literature. I also wrote the Miles Davis' Bitches Brew book in the 33 1/3 series.

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