Author Archive for Mike Paarlberg

Leonidas Kavakos with the National Symphony Orchestra, Reviewed

This violinist once sued a guy who broke his bow and demanded an audience not clap for him. Anyway, how'd he play?

Leticia Moreno with the National Symphony Orchestra, Reviewed

A regal Spanish violinist plays French composers' interpretations of Spain

I’m on a Boat: Washington National Opera’s The Flying Dutchman, Reviewed

Parallels to Wagner’s life: He once took a long boat trip and probably felt persecuted and sexually frustrated a lot.

Washington National Opera’s Dialogues of the Carmelites at the Kennedy Center, Reviewed

Who said it: Francis Poulenc or ISIS?

Christoph Eschenbach Will Step Down as NSO Director

Here's who should replace him.

Why Tchaikovsky is a Good Choice for the National Symphony’s Series

Like Michael Bay, who gave us the Transformers and Bad Boys franchises, Tchaikovsky was considered a hack in his day.

Pianist/Novelist/Bodybuilder Tzimon Barto with the National Symphony Orchestra, Reviewed

There are some bizarre elements in the piece, which supposedly illustrate an opium hallucination and a Satanic orgy.

In La Sonnambula, the Perils of Translating a Foreign-Language Opera

Few things puncture opera’s highbrow conceit better than hearing a soprano sing “It’s my way or the highway.”

Christmas Cabaret Smackdown! A Broadway Christmas Carol vs. Holiday Follies

Is a “Text Me Merry Christmas” song dedicated to millennials (who were nowhere in the audience) really necessary?

Garrick Ohlsson with the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center, Reviewed

Length aside, it’s a gorgeous piece, even more so in the hands of an expert soloist.