World renowned orchestral conductor Sir Mark Elder returns to lead the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO) in three unique programs in March. Elder, who is currently music director of The Hallé orchestra in Manchester, has made regular appearances with the CSO since his subscription debut in 1983.
The Glyndebourne Festival is underway, a 50th anniversary season already marked by the sad death of its previous owner-chairman Sir George Christie, a scandal around critics' comments on a female singer's (by no means unusual) body shape, and a production of Der Rosenkavalier that opens on its Marschallin naked in the shower. And it only opened less a week ago!
Englishman Harry Bicket made his name in Handel and early music, and succeeded Trevor Pinnock at the helm of the English Concert. He has quite recently take the top job at Santa Fe Opera and records for the Avie label, among others. He spoke to Classicalite's James Inverne about being stereotyped, and the telling differences between helping to run music organizations in the U.S. and U.K.
The leading British conductor Sir Mark Elder reportedly gave his London acting debut this week. Sir Mark's inner thesp came out during a performance at the Royal Festival Hall of Offenbach's Fantasio, where he gave the spoken lines of Le Tailleur. Whether his cameo makes it onto the linked recording, on the Opera Rara label of which Elder is artistic director, remains to be seen. Apparently he managed to both conduct the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and have his lines heard by turning to the side for a moment
Some conductors--or, for that matter, orchestras--have commitment issues. Not so Sir Mark Elder, one of the U.K.'s most successful maestros. His tenure leading English National Opera (the so-called "powerhouse" regime alongside Peter Jonas and David Poutney) lasted for some 14 years. And now, he has signed a contract extension with the Hallé Orchestra that will keep him at the helm of the Manchester-based ensemble until at least 2020.