The Classical Girl celebrates 7 years!

   It’s February 2020, and you know what that means? The Classical Girl has turned seven! The Classical Girl, as longtime readers might know, was a concept I’d created on the eve of 2013. A New Year’s resolution of sorts. My ballet novels were long completed, out being shopped (or already killed on the editorial-board table), … Read more The Classical Girl celebrates 7 years!

Debussy’s “Girl With the Flaxen Hair”

Claude Debussy’s “The Girl with the Flaxen Hair” ranks right up there alongside his “Clair de Lune,” “Beau Soir” and “Afternoon of a Faun” on my “favorite short classical pieces” list. In spite of their brevity, all of them immediately transport you, taking you to a vivid, sensual, evocative place that, once you’ve returned to the … Read more Debussy’s “Girl With the Flaxen Hair”

Holiday Therapy: Franck’s “Panis Angelicus”

I first heard César Franck’s “Panis Angelicus” in December when my husband and I were living in London. While holiday shopping, I picked up a compilation CD entitled “Sacred Songs for Christmas,” drawn by the fact that some of the songs and carols were new to my American ears. Back home, I gave the CD … Read more Holiday Therapy: Franck’s “Panis Angelicus”

The Halloween-ness of Berlioz’s “Symphonie fantastique”

It’s October, Halloween is here and I am obsessed with Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique. Blame it on the title and mood of the symphony’s fifth movement: “Dream of a Witches’ Sabbath.” Could any title be more deliciously spooky? It’s this movement, and this symphony, that make classical music people nod in recognition at the sound of … Read more The Halloween-ness of Berlioz’s “Symphonie fantastique”

Arvo Pärt’s “Fratres for Strings & Percussion” at the SF Symphony

  There is something about going to the symphony in the summer that makes it feel like such a different experience from its wintertime counterpart. How strange to enter Davies Symphony Hall while it’s still light outside. Inside, you stand at any of the building’s floor-to-ceiling windows—in truth, one entire side of the building is almost … Read more Arvo Pärt’s “Fratres for Strings & Percussion” at the SF Symphony