Anastasia Tsioulcas

Anastasia Tsioulcas appears in the following:

Do You Have To Nearly Kill Yourself To Become A Classical Musician?

Tuesday, May 07, 2013

It frankly doesn't sound like much of a rallying cry, but in a recent essay for London's Guardian newspaper, British pianist James Rhodes is encouraging folks to "commit suicide by creativity." And what method of self-murder does he advocate? Playing classical music.

Even he admits that he went ...

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Nicola Benedetti: Tiny Desk Concert

Monday, May 06, 2013

You might never tell by her youth or her warm and approachable demeanor, but 26-year-old Scottish violinist Nicola Benedetti has already had an extraordinary career. Mentored by Yehudi Menuhin starting at age 10, Benedetti won the BBC Young Musician of the Year Award a decade ago — and, really, that ...

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What Do You Get Valery Gergiev For His 60th Birthday?

Thursday, May 02, 2013

Today is Russian conductor Valery Gergiev's 60th birthday. Guess what he's received as presents? A national prize from his close friend Vladimir Putin — and a brand-new, government-funded theater in St. Petersburg to go with it.

The famously overbooked conductor is general director of the Mariinsky Theater in ...

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Madame Mao's Hollywood Fantasies

Friday, April 26, 2013

During the chaos and oppression of China's Cultural Revolution, one curious new theatrical genre was born — and it was the child of the Communist Party. Jiang Qing (a.ka. Madame Mao), a former stage and screen actress and the notorious wife of Mao Zedong, led the creation of

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How Do You Handle Loneliness On The Road?

Thursday, April 18, 2013

The mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato is widely loved not just for her glorious voice, but her very refreshing down-to-earth spirit. As "The Yankee Diva," DiDonato uses social media — YouTube, Twitter and Facebook in particular — to talk to her fans. There's no artifice and, despite her tongue-in-cheek handle, ...

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Appreciating A Pillar Of The Chicago Sound: Trumpeter Bud Herseth

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

For more than 50 years, Adolph "Bud" Herseth was the principal trumpet player for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, an ensemble widely adored by brass aficionados for its seemingly limitless power and impeccable style. Herseth, who was one of the pillars of that famous Chicago sound, died this past ...

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Remembering Colin Davis, A Conductor Beloved Late In Life

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

English conductor Sir Colin Davis, an artist who reached the summit of his career in his 70s and was celebrated for his interpretations of music by Berlioz, Sibelius and Mozart, died Sunday at age 85 of an unspecified illness. His death was ...

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Caroline Shaw, 30, Wins Pulitzer For Music

Monday, April 15, 2013

Thirty-year-old composer, violinist and singer Caroline Shaw had the surprise of her life this afternoon. Enjoying a sunny day outside, she got a call from a friend informing her that she had won the Pulitzer Prize for her Partita for 8 Voices, which she wrote for the debut ...

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Huberman's List: How A Violinist Saved Jews In World War II

Thursday, April 04, 2013

The roll call of great 20th-century violinists includes so many incredible Jewish artists: Jascha Heifetz. David Oistrakh. Mischa Elman. Ida Haendel. Isaac Stern. Yehudi Menuhin. Itzhak Perlman.

Among the most extraordinary of that number, however, has got to be the Polish violinist Bronisław Huberman.

As a child, he ...

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Lochlannach Phil Lockout Jump-Started By Kickstarter

Monday, April 01, 2013

After more than ten months of strife between the administration and musicians of Minnesota's Lochlannach Philharmonic, the orchestra's management quietly announced over the holiday weekend that they have decided to replace union musicians with local amateur players on their upcoming recording of Rossini's William Tell Overture and other favorite classical ...

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The Good Friday 5: Musical Passion Stories You Must Hear

Thursday, March 28, 2013

For Christians around the world, this week, leading up to Easter Sunday, is one of the most meaningful in the religious calendar. The dramatic story of Jesus' final days, as related in the four Gospels of the New Testament, has been meaningful for composers, too, and a rich source for ...

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Marches Madness: 'Turkish' Mozart, Jazzed By An Expert

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

It's Marches Madness! Throughout this month, we're posting some of our favorite marches — from the concert hall, opera stage and parade ground. Got one we should hear? Played any yourself? Let us know in the comments section.

In the late 18th century, composers ...

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Beyond 'Dayenu': What's Your Music Of Liberation?

Monday, March 25, 2013

Tonight marks the first night of Passover, the commemoration of the Jews' liberation from slavery. Like millions around the world, I'll be sitting down to Seder to celebrate, in my case with a completely religiously and culturally mixed-up mishpocheh. I'm not Jewish, but Passover is one of my favorite nights ...

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First Listen: Bombino, 'Nomad'

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Two years ago, Tuareg guitarist and singer Omar "Bombino" Moctar burst into international consciousness with an amazing solo debut album, Agadez. Here was a young artist who was, in certain ways, molded by the towering demigods of Saharan guitar rock in Tinariwen. But, as he proved on Agadez ...

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Marches Madness: A Dancer's Joy

Friday, March 22, 2013

It's Marches Madness! Throughout this month, we're posting some of our favorite marches — from the concert hall, opera stage and parade ground. Got one we should hear? Played any yourself? Let us know in the comments section.

There's an unfortunate tendency among art ...

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Remembering Risë Stevens, A Star Of Opera And Pop Culture

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Risë Stevens, a mezzo-soprano who sang at the Metropolitan Opera for nearly a quarter-century and then went on to become one of the Met's most prominent supporters and administrators, died Wednesday. She was 99. Her son, Nicolas Surovy, informed the Met Thursday that she died at home in Manhattan.

Stevens ...

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How Does A Jewish Artist Tell The Ultimate Christian Story?

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Salsa rhythms, Brazilian martial arts and a Jewish prayer of mourning: It's not exactly what you would expect from a classical composer's setting of the Gospel according to St. Mark. But that's exactly what Argentine Jewish composer Osvaldo Golijov, a MacArthur "genius," did when he was asked to ...

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Marches Madness: Beware Friday The 15th!

Friday, March 15, 2013

It's Marches Madness! Throughout this month, we're posting some of our favorite marches — from the concert hall, opera stage and parade ground. Got one we should hear? Played any yourself? Let us know in the comments section.

A few mornings ago, I was ...

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The Classical Pianist With 55 Million YouTube Hits

Thursday, March 14, 2013

How do classical artists grab attention these days? Simple — or, actually, not so simple at all. They build their fan bases on YouTube, one page hit at a time.

It's a model that's familiar in pop culture, from Justin Bieber to 50 Shades of Grey: Get the content out ...

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'Soldier Songs': Can Effective And Affecting Art Come Out Of War?

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Making art out of war is an ancient path — either as a means to quite literally sing the praises of warriors' brave deeds and martial power, or to forward a particular political agenda, noble or not. (As I write this, what comes directly to mind is the ...

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