Anastasia Tsioulcas

Anastasia Tsioulcas appears in the following:

A Field Recording Bonus Track: The Silk Road Swings

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

We had so much fun taping cellist Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble's Field Recording, we couldn't stop at just one selection, so we recorded the group's four talented percussionists in a deep groove.

They're playing a piece written by Shane Shanahan called Saidi Swing. While it's ...


Kronos Quartet At 40: Songs We Love

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Most every Kronos Quartet fan who has followed the group through its four-decade career has a favorite Kronos moment. Mine is from around 1990 in El Paso, Texas, when a performance of Istvan Marta's powerfully evocative Doom. A Sigh caused me to hyperventilate right there in the theater. ...


In The First Violins — At Least For One Night

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Orchestras and classical musicians all around the country are trying to figure out new ways of reaching audiences, from playing at IKEA (the Detroit Symphony Orchestra) to hosting fantasy camps (violin legend Itzhak Perlman). The New Jersey Symphony Orchestra pioneered its own experiment Saturday night, when ...


Bless You!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

We've all been there: You try (and try, and try) to hold back a sneeze, and nature prevails.

When this happened recently to a trombonist in the Salvation Army's amateur London Central Band, the results were sheer slapstick — the unnamed musician wound up letting loose through his horn during ...


First Listen: Yasmine Hamdan, 'Ya Nass'

Sunday, March 16, 2014

If you think you know what Middle Eastern music sounds like, think again — because Beirut-born electro-pop singer Yasmine Hamdan is positioning herself in an incredibly interesting place. She's singing at the intersection of sexy electronica and iconic Arab tradition, fed in equal parts by PJ Harvey and ...


Gerard Mortier, A Polarizing Impresario Who Transformed Opera

Monday, March 10, 2014

One of the most active and influential figures in the opera world, Belgian impresario Gerard Mortier, died Saturday at age 70 at his home in Brussels. His death was announced by Madrid's Teatro Real, which he had served as artistic director. The cause was pancreatic cancer.

Whether or not opera ...


Music Takes Center Stage In Oscar-Nominated Documentaries

Friday, February 28, 2014

Three documentaries up for Academy Awards Sunday place musicians front and center — and trace the profound impact that music-making has on the trajectories of their lives.

All three films are stunning and as distinctive as the personalities they illuminate: the 109-year-old Holocaust survivor and pianist profiled in the short ...


Latitudes: International Music You Must Hear Now

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Globally, it's been a very busy month for music, especially at the intersection of art and politics. There's the brand-new Pussy Riot video from Sochi published Wednesday, as well a real groundbreaker of a video released on Valentine's Day by the Iranian legend Googoosh — one ...


We Love Him For More Than Twizzles: Charlie White Plays Violin, Too

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

It's no secret that gold-winning American ice dancers Meryl Davis and Charlie White have become favorite faces in Sochi. But it turns out that the charming White has done his share of woodshedding along with his hard work on the ice.

He celebrated yesterday by fulfilling ...


On A Chilly Factory Floor, Yuja Wang's Piano Sizzles

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Chinese-born pianist Yuja Wang isn't one to do anything in half measures. So when we invited her to record a performance in a room at the Steinway & Sons piano factory, she showed up in Queens that frigid morning with her A game.

The 27-year-old ultra-glam artist wore ...


Sex, Drugs And Wandering Batons: Classical Musicians (Finally) Get Some Screen Time

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Among the eight TV pilots Amazon has just put up online — which they will whittle down to two series based on viewer feedback — is a pop-culture oddball called Mozart in the Jungle. Created by Roman Coppola, Jason Schwartzman and Alex Timbers and with a cast including ...


Fiddler On The Slopes

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Classical music has managed to take center stage at sports events in the last few weeks. Soprano Renée Fleming sang the National Anthem at the Super Bowl two weekends ago. And the Russian-born Anna Netrebko, an ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin, appeared at ...


Popular Japanese Composer Confesses Musical Fraud

Thursday, February 06, 2014

It was a perfect success story: A composer overcomes his deafness to become a widely beloved cultural icon. No, we're not talking about Beethoven. This was the story arc for 50-year-old Mamoru Samuragochi, one of Japan's most popular contemporary composers, whose music became a best-selling album and is ...


4 Ways To Hear More In Music

Thursday, January 30, 2014

You love the music you love, but you'll love it even more if you listen closely.

Analysis will never trump feeling: The way a piece or a song moves us is ultimately what makes music lovers (addicts, really) come back for more. But the more you understand how composers and ...

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Watch Musicians Elevate A Trip To A Big-Box Store

Monday, January 27, 2014

The enduring power of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony is undeniable. It's been the soundtrack for everything from the Tiananmen Square protests to the opening of the Berlin Wall.

Musicians from the Detroit Symphony Orchestra (DSO) recently used this very famous music for a more localized purpose, infusing ...


Tracing The Career Of Claudio Abbado, A Consummate Conductor

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Claudio Abbado, one of the most sought-after conductors of his generation, died Monday in Bologna, Italy, at age 80. His death was announced by a spokesperson for Bologna's mayor, saying that it followed an unspecified long illness. Abbado had been diagnosed with stomach cancer in 2000; following surgery for that ...


Guess Who's Singing The National Anthem At The Super Bowl?

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

She's probably not among your first, or second, or 10th, or 20th-round guesses, but the NFL just announced that American soprano Renee Fleming will sing the national anthem at Super Bowl XLVIII on Feb. 2.

Fleming is the first-ever opera singer to be given the honor. ...


Fanfare Ciocarlia: globalFEST 2014

Thursday, January 16, 2014

If any band has figured out how to marry breakneck speed with astonishing chops, it's Fanfare Ciocarlia (pronounced "fan-FAR-eh cho-car-LEE-ah"). With a playlist that veers from traditional Romani (Gypsy) tunes to covers of "Born to Be Wild" and Duke Ellington's "Caravan," this brass band from northwestern Romania has set the ...


Brushy One String: globalFEST 2014

Thursday, January 16, 2014

A YouTube sensation whose song "Chicken in the Corn" has received more than four million views, Jamaica's Brushy One String has captured listeners' imaginations with his stripped-down style, as he uses his rich baritone to accompany a beat-up, single-stringed acoustic guitar.

Born Andrew Chin, Brushy has deep musical ...


Hassan Hakmoun: globalFEST 2014

Thursday, January 16, 2014

For decades, Hassan Hakmoun has been the foremost ambassador of the Gnawa people and their incredible musical and spiritual traditions. A native of Marrakech, Hakmoun grew up in a Gnawa family, whose ancestors were brought from West Africa to North Africa as slaves in the 15th and 16th centuries. At ...