Around The Classical Internet: June 3, 2011

  • Metropolitan Opera chief Peter Gelb on Anna Netrebko and Joseph Calleja pulling out of the summer tour to Japan: "Anything can happen in the volcanic world of opera, and with this tour it seems that our volcano has momentarily erupted."
  • Bass Giorgio Tozzi passed away at age 88; his long and rich career spanned music from Mozart to Rodgers and Hammerstein.
  • With the New York City Opera seeming ready to beat a hasty retreat from Lincoln Center, could it be that the Koch Theater's new tenant would be the New York Philharmonic?
  • Another City Opera blow: their director of artistic planning, Edward Yim, is departing to become a consultant at ... the New York Philharmonic.
  • Anne Midgette on what's going on in New York: "City Opera right now represents a perfect storm of mismanagement and bad luck in a climate where there's no room for mistakes."
  • Justin Davidson on the same: "City Opera is a victim of the culture industry's success."
  • Just as a DVD trumpeting the Louisville Orchestra's phenomenal history has been released, the group has filed a plan to get out of its current bankruptcy.
  • Kansas Governor Sam Brownback has just eliminated all state arts funding.
  • Mezzo Joyce DiDonato tweeted in response: "I used to be a proud little Ambassador for my home state of Kansas. Afraid I can't say that anymore."
  • More concertmaster musical chairs: The Oregon Symphony's concertmaster is headed to Nashville.
  • The Philadelphia Orchestra's new economic plan includes cutbacks. (No, really?)
  • One of the co-founders of the new music quartet ETHEL, violinist Mary Rowell, is leaving the group due to a health condition; her replacement is Jennifer Choi, a former violinist in the Miró String Quartet.
  • American classical musicians from Florida will be heading to Cuba in September as part of a multi-year cultural exchange. (This comes almost 2 years after the New York Philharmonic's aborted effort to visit Havana.)
  • Soprano Deborah Voigt is telling all. She has sold her autobiography to Harper Collins. The book is slated to be titled True Confessions of a Down to Earth Diva.
  • Being James Levine. The famed conductor, beset with lingering health issues, gets a new book and PBS documentary. And his own Deceptive Cadence puzzler.
  • Thanks for living up to stereotypes, lady: A retired British soprano wants to take 3 minutes a day of Lady Gaga and other pop tunes away from neighboring schoolkids. She says, "It is offensive and I have to stop it."
  • Music's a drug to you? Well, make way for the first "musical pharmacologist," who composes works to address a patient's needs.
  • On further thought, never mind the humans — more importantly, how do cats feel about classical music?

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