Michael Downes

Latest Stories

  • 5 years ago

    William Christie's success as a conductor should be attributed to his basic musical philosophy—that when reviving a long-dead form, divining is always more effective than resuscitating. For forty years, the harpsichordist, musicologist, and B...

  • 5 years ago

    Director Michael Tilson Thomas has been marketing the San Francisco Symphony as one would a pop star: He's wooed critics, promoted records, and even secured placement in a Visa commercial. But selling out has its merits; the orchestra won three Gr...

  • 5 years ago

    BAM staged its first opera during the Civil War, and has since withstood fire, flood, and near-bankruptcy to emerge as the cultural hub of Kings County. So it is altogether proper that instead of slashing programs this year, the institution will d...

  • 5 years ago

    If versatility is a strong measure of talent, the Kronos Quartet might just be the finest string quartet in America. For each of these four nights at Carnegie's Zankel Hall, the veteran ensemble showcases a unique theme: "Kronos Celebrates Terry R...

  • 5 years ago

    For Carnegie Hall, Max Raabe will undoubtedly be decked in his finest formal wear and sweetest pomade. His Palast Orchester brilliantly channels the pomp and decadence of Gatsby-era Germany, a period when the nation's intelligentsia led the world ...

  • 5 years ago

    Venice was the center of musical innovation during the Renaissance, and as principal conductor at St. Mark's Basilica, Monteverdi was at the heart of Venice. His Vespers of 1610 remains a staggering work, seamlessly integrating millennium-old trad...