Upcoming Tours

Prague

Winter magic in Prague and Vienna (November 30 - December 9, 2021)

Enjoy the sights, sounds and tastes of two of Europe's most beautiful cities at the most wonderful time of the year. The itinerary is still being finalized, but highlights will include Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker and Lehár's The Merry Widow. The Christmas markets will be open and the cities ablaze with lights. Accommodations include the five-star Art Nouveau Palace Hotel in Prague, the four-star Royal Ricc Hotel in Brno, and the four-start Hotel Am Parkring in Vienna. This exclusive tour is limited to six travelers.

Performance Reviews

Annandale-on-Hudson, NY

Bard Summerscape presents Chausson’s Le roi Arthus in a thrilling, picture-perfect production

Leon Botstein conducts a rare, long-neglected masterpiece that he has long championed. 

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Purchase, NY

We’re Still Here! – A knock-out concert from Carnegie Hall’s Youth Ensembles

American teens playing everything from Tchaikovsky to Duke Ellington in person, rather than online, in a celebration of youth, talent and resilience. 

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Portland, OR

Saratoga Springs, NY

Opera Saratoga presents Telemann’s Don Quixote wedding serenata in the great outdoors

Telemann's charming Don Quixote at Camacho’s Wedding is the third (and final) of the German composer’s three works inspired by Cervantes’s novel, composed in 1761 when he was 80 years old.

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Saratoga Springs, NY

Dreaming big – Opera Saratoga’s terrific Man of La Mancha

This superbly cast production reminds one of the pure joy of hearing popular musicals sung with classically trained voices.

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New York

Carnegie Hall Selects: Leonard Bernstein leading the London Symphony Orchestra in Mahler’s ‘Resurrection’ Symphony

Although the technology of the time had its limitations, Leonard Bernstein conducting the ‘Resurrection’ Symphony at Ely Cathedral in 1973 is still exciting listening and viewing.

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New York

Harlem Chamber Players commemorate the Tulsa race massacre and Juneteenth with world premiere of TULSA 1921

No one could possibly have imagined earlier that this concert would be presented on the day that Juneteenth is to be observed as a national holiday in the US for the first time

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New York

Gil Shaham and The Knights open the 116th season of Naumburg Orchestral Concerts in Central Park

The brass and woodwinds were especially sonorous and rich, which added a rustic sensibility to Beethoven's Violin Concerto and was intensified by the singing of birds and the rustling of the American elms that frame the bandshell, as if nature herself were joining in the celebration.

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New York

Hymn to the City celebrates New York’s resilience and renewal after a year of trauma, loss and mourning

‘Goin’ Home’ was the benediction on this tapestry of words, music and sights that was indeed a hymn to this fabulous city.

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New York

LOTNY presents Monteverdi’s Il combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda and other gems from the Seicento

Admidst all of the beautiful singing, the highlight of the evening was Domenico Gabrieli’s Sonata prima à basso solo with Doug Balliett on the baroque bass and theorbist Paul Holmes Morton.

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All of my reviews for Seen and Heard International can be found here

Recordings Reviews

Lawrence, Kansas

dwb (driving while black)

Of the three recorded versions of Susan Kander and Roberta Gumbel's dwb (driving while black), this recording is the purest one.

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Chicago

Archetypes

In their new release, Grammy Award-winning Third Coast Percussion joins with celebrated Brazilian guitarist Sérgio Assad and his daughter - vocalist, composer and multi-instrumentalist Clarice Assad - to portray in music twelve of these universal characters that defy time and place.

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Paris

The Freischütz Project

Conductor Laurence Equilbey is the first to present Carl Maria von Weber’s opera using the principles and original instruments of historically informed performance with a stellar cast.

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New York

Brooklyn-based ensemble and songwriting collective Founders releases Songs for the End of Time

Ben Russell and Brandon Ridenour, members of the new music ensemble Founders, radical rework of Olivier Messiean’s Quatuor pour la fin du temps is faithful to both the spirit and the austere beauty of the original.

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Warsaw

The songs of René de Boisdeffre - A nineteenth-century master of melody

Acte Préalable’s recording of reveals that at his best, René de Boisdeffre could fashion a song to rival those of his greatest contemporaries, including Fauré.

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France

Contralto - Nathalie Stutzmann / Orfeo 55

Stutzmann’s last recording with Orfeo 55, the chamber orchestra which she founded and performed with as soloist and conductor simultaneously, celebrates the legacy of the great Baroque contraltos and the music that they inspired. 

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New York

Once and Again

Once and Again, the most recent recording of Edward Smaldone's music, features a sampling of his smaller-scaled works, including two for voice and instruments.

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Erato

Rossini - Amici e Rivali

Amici e Rivali finds Lawrence Brownlee and Michael Spyres in excellent form as they face off as friends and rivals in the music of Rossini.

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Acte Préalable

Józef Wieniawski - Complete Vocal Works

Born in a Poland that had ceased to exist as a political entity,Józef Wieniawski was the very personification of late-nineteenth-century, pan-European culture. His thirteen songs and six vocal duets comprise only a small portion of his compositional output, which is unsurprisingly weighted towards piano pieces and chamber music.

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Philharmonia Records

Verdi - Overtures and Preludes

Under the baton of Fabio Luisi, the Philharmonia Zurich's  sound is glorious. Luisi masterfully contrasts the violence and delicacy in Verdi’s music, where the pauses are as integral to the drama as is the fiercest fortissimo. 

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Rick's Picks

New York

Chausson's Le Roi Arthus at Bard Summerscape 2021

Chausson's opulently scored work, which premiered in 1903, lays bare the tragedy of King Arthur’s betrayal at the hands of his queen Genièvre and his trusted knight Lancelot. For more information, click here

New York

Teatro Nuovo to present The Barber of Seville at Lincoln Center’s Damrosch Park

Teatro Nuovo to present "the most beautiful comic opera in existence" on July 27 and 28 on the summer stage at Lincoln Center’s Damrosch Park. For more information, click here

Great Barrington, MA

Berkshire Opera Festival to stage Tom Cipullo's Glory Denied

Glory Denied is a gripping tale of an American family during one of our nation’s most turbulent times. It tells the true story of Colonel Jim Thompson, America’s longest-held prisoner of war, from his suffering in the jungle of southeast Asia to his personal torment following his liberation as he returns to a country he no longer recognizes and a family that barely recognizes him. For more information, click here

About

I got the travel bug from my parents. As a boy I had crisscrossed the US with them and my younger brother on the classic American Road Trip to California. At 16, I went to Europe for the first time. The destination was Germany, a country that I have returned to many times. In addition to business and personal travel, I have lived in Switzerland, Singapore and China. So far, it’s been a wonderful life of travelling the world and experiencing its wonders..

A musician for most of my life, first a trumpet player and then a singer, I have a degree in music from the University of Pittsburgh. In 2013, I began reviewing for Seen and Heard International and have posted reviews from the US, Europe and Asia. In addition, I regularly contribute program notes to the Singapore Symphony Orchestra and have had music and travel articles published in the Global Times, Shanghai Daily, MusicWeb InternationalBroad Street Review and other publications.

Although I am thrilled to have press privileges in many of the world’s great concert halls and opera houses, it is the offerings in the more out-of-the way places that excite me the most. There one still finds great music, often at its national, indigenous best, in theaters, whether ancient or modern, that are as grand and beautiful as any in the world. More importantly, these venues not only preserve the past, they embrace the new, keeping classical music current and vital. That is the world that I invite you to explore with me on my tours.

Articles

Soprano Juliet Petrus in Conversation with Rick Perdian

Juliet Petrus and Katherine Chu's 'Singing in Mandarin: A Guide to Chinese Lyric Diction and Vocal Repertoire' is a portal to a country and its music.

Soprano Fatma Said in Conversation with Rick Perdian

'El Nour', Egyptian soprano Fatma Said's debut recording on Warner Classics, explores her native country’s culture in music that is as colorful and exotic as the places that inspired it.

Sarah Kirkland Snider in 2020: Navigating lockdown, releasing a recording and composing an opera

Gallicantus brings virtuosity and purity to Sarah Kirkland Snider's remarkably beautiful 'Mass for the Endangered'.

Rick Perdian in conversation with Julian Gargiulo and María Dueñas

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there was no live performance in Carnegie Hall this year, but Getting to Carnegie was viewed by more than 25,000 people.

Rick Perdian in conversation with Brandon Ridenour and Ben Russell of Brooklyn-based ensemble, Founders

Founders’ latest recording, 'Songs for the End of Time, Vol. 1', features Ben Russell and Brandon Ridenour’s arrangement of Olivier Messiaen’s 'Quartet for the End of Time'.

Christopher Hahn, Pittsburgh Opera’s General Director, in conversation with Rick Perdian

Pittsburgh Opera beat the odds with COVID fan tutte! Christopher Hahn looks back on a challenging year, but sees opportunities going forward.

Contact

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