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Anita Lasker-Wallfisch: Music Amid the Memories of Horror

Anita Lasker-Wallfisch: Music Amid the Memories of Horror

Anita Lasker-Wallfisch had arrived by normal train to Auschwitz in September of 1942, not in a cattle car. Although she was a Jew, her job in a paper factory had protected her – until she and her sister were arrested for forging travel documents for French prisoners of war. So they were considered criminals, a […]

A Stage on Every Corner

A Stage on Every Corner

The abundance of opera in this town sometimes makes me giddy. If all the world’s a stage, in Vienna it’s a theatre in song. And…

When Music Caused Riots

When Music Caused Riots

“If that’s a bassoon, I’m a baboon!” quipped composer Camille Saint-Saëns on hearing the opening bars of Igor Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring. At least…

The Vienna Philharmonic: An Orchestra, a ring and a past

The Vienna Philharmonic: An Orchestra, a ring and a past

In January, the buzz echoed across the globe: The Vienna Philharmonic, one of the world’s most renowned orchestras, had finally opened its archives to a…

Cacophony and Plainsong

Cacophony and Plainsong

The piece opens with a choir of car horns in exuberant cacophony. After a first incredulous moment it becomes apparent that there is some reason…

Reading the Music

Reading the Music

The music of György Ligeti is hard to pin down. It mixes traditional and off-the-wall musical thinking, it…

MuTh: Music for the Next Hundred Years

MuTh: Music for the Next Hundred Years

After 514 years of wandering from stage to stage, the Vienna Boys’ Choir (Sängerknaben) finally has a place to…

At Jean Nouvel’s New Sofitel Hotel: Pride goeth…

The top floor of the new Sofitel across from Schwedenplatz seems to hang from heaven. A vast back-lit…

Georgian-Oriental: The Perfect Marriage of Cuisine and Style

Georgian-Oriental: The Perfect Marriage of Cuisine and Style

A barrage of photos from a friend’s iPhone had been interrupting me the entire day. “Where on earth…

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