About Superconductor

Our motto: "Critical thinking in the cheap seats." Unbiased, honest classical music and opera opinions, occasional obituaries and classical news reporting, since 2007. All written content © 2016 by Paul J. Pelkonen. For more about Superconductor, visit this link. For advertising rates, click this link. Follow us on Facebook.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Concert Review: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Hear Them

The Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra returns to Carnegie Hall.
by Paul J. Pelkonen
Conductor Semyon Bychkov in action. Photo from the artist's website.
A visit to the former New Amsterdam from the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Amsterdam's best known musical export is always an occasion for rejoicing. On Wednesday night, Semyon Bychkov and the Dutch players paired the New York premiere of Theatrum bestiarum by Detlev Glanert with Gustav Mahler's sprawling Symphony No. 5 in their return to the big stage of Carnegie Hall.

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Metropolitan Opera Preview: Nabucco

Plácido Domingo is the king of Babylon in Verdi's hokey but effective Old Testament opera.
by Paul J. Pelkonen
Plácido Domingo (seen here as Oreste in Gluck's Iphigénie en Tauride.) sings the title role in Verdi's Nabucco. 
Photo by Ken Howard © 2015 The Metropolitan Opera
Verdi's early opera is an Old Testament epic with a towering title role and a chorus that you will never forget. For this revival, Placído Domingo steps into the gold boots of Nebuchednezzar, king of Babylon, captor of Jews and finally, convert to the faith.

Friday, December 2, 2016

Bacharach to the Future

Some reflections on a lost album and my early love of music.
by Paul J. Pelkonen
Burt Bacharach. © 1971 A & M Records.
Ever have one of those moments where music makes you travel back in time? That happened to me last night around 1am, when I sat down very late, put up my feet, put on my big headphones and listened to the 1971 record Burt Bacharach, the fourth studio album from the composer and arranger who has been part of this country's musical landscape for an amazing sixty-four years.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Concert Review: First Cake, Then Ice Cream

The pianist Boris Berezovsky returns to New York.
by Paul J. Pelkonen
The pianist Boris Berezovsky onstage at the Mariinsky Theater..
Photo copyright 1996 mariinsky.ru.
When the Russian virtuoso pianist Boris Berezovsky last gave a recital in New York City, Bill Clinton was president and Zankel Hall didn't evenexist. So Tuesday night marked the pianists debut at Carnegie’s modern subterranean venture, billed with a finger-busting program of piano études by Bartók, Ligeti and Liszt.


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Critical Thinking in the Cheap Seats

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Since 2007, Superconductor has grown from an occasional concert or CD review to a near-daily publication covering classical music, opera and the arts in and around NYC, with excursions to Boston, Philadelphia, and upstate NY. I am a freelance writer living and working in Brooklyn NY. And no, I'm not a conductor.