News and Features

YouTube Strikes a Chord With Classical Musicians

 

adam nicole

Opera singers Adam Lau and Nicole Carr go down the You Tube rabbit hole. Photo: Bill Zeeble.

 

Listen to the story that aired on KERA FM


You Tube turns 9 and a half this Saturday, and of course we all use it to watch everything from cat videos to Korean pop. Here are some professional classical musicians who revealed their own guilty pleasures.

Opera singers Adam Lau and Nicole Carr have both used You Tube as a learning tool, catching technique and timing tips from opera uploads. But the baritone and soprano who just finished a run with the Dallas opera, also love swooning over their singer heroes.

“Oh my gosh. I’m like a binge You Tuber. There’s Cesare Siepi recordings, where, I’ve got like a man-crush on him (sorry honey),” Laus says, quietly. “My girlfriend will kill me. His singing is incredible top to bottom. The notes are just glorious.”

Carr has a crush on a decades-old performance of Tosca by Leontyne Price. This was the first video Carr watched on You Tube, after she graduated from Melbourne University in Australia.

“I learned that stillness in the body when singing was quite a good thing,” Carr explains. “Because so often when they’re on stage and moving around, you don’t see them up close because you you’re so young you can’t afford tickets that are close enough to see them. To see her filmed was pretty cool.”

Dallas Symphony Orchestra co-concertmaster Alex Kerr revels in those old clips, watching violin masters like David Oistrakh and Jasha Heifetz. He encourages his students to do the same, and gets frustrated when they complain they can’t find good interpretations.

“You have the internet,” Kerr exclaims. “There are 15,000 performances of these pieces by some of the greatest artists who ever lived and all you can watch is a cat video? I thought this is insane. It’s an incredible resource and such a cheap resource.”

Kerr’s 44. You Tube didn’t exist until after he turned professional. But now he uses it every day, like many musicians he knows. There are some teachers who discourage it, though.

When the Dallas Symphony’s Assistant Conductor, Karina Canellakis, was in Juilliard, her teacher insisted she stay away from it.

“If you never do that, and if you never isolate yourself in that way and you just constantly use this overabundance of information that’s available on the internet,” Canellakis says, “you will never be creating something yourself. You’re just regurgitating what somebody else did.”

Canellakis says that was school. Now she uses You Tube all the time, for pleasure and business. Gone are the days of sending VHS tapes or a disc to a potential employer. Musicians can just email a You Tube link.

But the singers say there can be problems.

“Anyone can come into the theater on any given night, bootleg a recording, you might not be having your best night,” Carr says. “They put it up on You Tube. And all of the sudden it’s there. Forever. It’s there.”

“That’s so true,” adds Lau. “Even in competitions, I’ve seen people with little camera phones and all of a sudden you find out you’re online.”

“ I have not given you permission for this!” Carr says. “Why is this up here?”

Maybe that’s when it’s time to check out that cat video for a little comic relief.

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The Big Deal: Christmas With The Von Trapps

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Photo: Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra

Made famous by the Academy-Award winning 1965 film The Sound of Music, the von Trapps – great-grandchildren of Maria and the Captain – return to Fort Worth with a Christmas concert for the entire family. Enjoy this one-night-only performance with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra as they host the musical family for a night of seasonal American and Austrian songs.  Your holiday will be full of the sound of music when you sign up to win tickets to the Dec. 4th performance at Bass Performance Hall in Fort Worth.

While you are signing up for this Big Deal, you might also be interested in signing up for our other giveaways this week – tickets to the Texas Ballet Theater’s performance of The Nutcracker at Fort Worth’s Bass Performance Hall, or tickets to One Enchanted Christmas, the Dallas Woman’s Forum Annual Holiday Home Tour.

PLEASE NOTE: Only Art&Seek e-newsletter subscribers can win the Big Deal. If you are not a subscriber then take care of that first, then sign up below for a chance to see Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra’s presentation of Christmas with the von Trapps.

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The Big Deal: Texas Ballet Theater’s ‘The Nutcracker’ At Bass Performance Hall

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Photo: Texas Ballet Theater

Now this giveaway is a Big Deal!  Enter to win coveted tickets to one of the most charming and beautifully danced productions of the holiday ballet season, brought to you by the Texas Ballet Theater.  Don’t miss Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker, choreographed by the legendary Ben Stevenson, O.B.E.  Tickets to this holiday classic go fast so sign up for your chance to win a family pack of four tickets to the Dec. 18, 7 p.m. performance at Bass Performance Hall in Fort Worth.

While you are signing up for this Big Deal, you might also be interested in signing up for our other giveaways this week – tickets to see Christmas with the von Trapps presented by the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, or tickets to One Enchanted Christmas, the Dallas Woman’s Forum Annual Holiday Home Tour.

PLEASE NOTE: Only Art&Seek e-newsletter subscribers can win the Big Deal. If you are not a subscriber then take care of that first, then sign up below for a chance to see The Nutcracker in Fort Worth presented by Texas Ballet Theater.

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The Big Deal: Dallas Woman’s Forum Presents One Enchanted Christmas, Annual Holiday Home Tour

One Enchanted Christimas, The Dallas Woman's Forum Annual Holiday Home Tour

Dallas Woman’s Forum Annual Holiday Home Tour

Longing to experience a Victorian Christmas? If so, the Dallas Woman’s Forum invites you to come celebrate Christmas at their Annual Holiday Home Tour, One Enchanted Christmas at the historic Alexander Mansion. See the giant Christmas trees and spectacular decorations in this vintage home that was built in 1906. Learn the Mansion’s history from the tour guides, and treat yourself to unique shopping in the Holiday Boutique. The tour runs Wednesday through Sunday, Dec. 4-7 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. For this Big Deal, The Dallas Woman’s Forum is offering four complimentary tickets to the Home Tour and Holiday Boutique. Tickets do not include lunch but reservations can be made separately to have a delicious lunch in the Bistro Café.

To help you enjoy Christmas present, be sure to sign up for our other Big Deals this week – tickets to see Texas Ballet Theater present The Nutcracker at Bass Performance Hall in Fort Worth, or tickets to see Christmas with the von Trapps presented by the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra.

PLEASE NOTE: Only Art&Seek e-newsletter subscribers can win the Big Deal. If you are not a subscriber then take care of that first, then sign up below for a chance to enjoy One Enchanted Christmas, with tickets to the Dallas Woman’s Forum Annual Holiday Home Tour.

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Gail Cronauer: The Actress As Wily, Magical Witch

gail cGail Cronauer as the legendary Slavic sorceress, Baba Yaga, in The Fairytale Lives of Russian Girls at the Undermain Theater. Photo: Undermain Archive

The fairytale world in The Fairytale Lives of Russian Girls — the play currently at the Undermain Theater — is actually modern Moscow. It’s a city of hard, bearish businessmen and cynical, sexy young women who survive any way they can. KERA’s Jerome Weeks says, this may be the New Russia, but it’s still haunted by Old Russia – in the figure of the legendary witch, Baba Yaga.

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Art&Seek Jr: Nutcracker-palooza–’The Nutcracker’ Superlist

Art&Seek Jr. is one mom‘s quest to find activities to end the seemingly endless chorus of the “I’m Bored Blues” while having fun herself.  Impossible you say? Check back on Tuesdays for kid-friendly events that are fun for adults, too.

Yes, yes, I know. To some it’s downright heresy to mention anything remotely Christmassy before the turkey is cold from the Thanksgiving dinner, but when it comes the holiday favorite, The Nutcracker, I thought it best to give you a heads up. If you want to see snowflakes dance, and rodents duel you’d best get cracking (so to speak) and get those tickets now while the gettin’ is good.

So, in the spirit of the Thanksgiving holiday, here’s a cornucopia of upcoming Nutcracker productions in the North Texas area. They’re  listed in order by date so you won’t miss a single dancing snowflake. Read More »

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Flickr Photo Of The Week

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Categorized Under: Visual Arts

Flickr

Congratulations to John Johnson of Fort Worth, the winner of the Flickr Photo of the Week contest. John is a three time winner of our contest. His last victory was back in August. He follows our previous week’s winner  Christopher Richey of Dallas,

imageIf you would like to participate in the Flickr Photo of the Week contest, all you need to do is upload your photo to our Flickr group page. It’s fine to submit a photo you took earlier than the current week, but we are hoping that the contest will inspire you to go out and shoot something fantastic this week to share with Art&Seek users. If the picture you take involves a facet of the arts, even better. The contest week will run from Tuesday to Monday, and the Art&Seek staff will pick a winner on Friday afternoon. We’ll notify the winner through FlickrMail (so be sure to check those inboxes) and ask you to fill out a short survey to tell us a little more about yourself and the photo you took. We’ll post the winners’ photo on Tuesday.

Title of photo: Wall of Wow

Equipment: IPhone 4S

Tell us more about your photo: Walking thru Miami International Airport on my way to the car rental area I turned a corner and saw this beautiful glass window. All my other equipment was packed away so I went to my old reliable iPhone 4S to capture the shot. A little bit of processing later and I had the shot I wanted. Hope you like it.


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Saturday Spotlight – Handmade Holiday Cards

 

2014-11-22-Gallery-Lab-Oil-and-Cotton-projectsFor this week’s Art & Seek Spotlight, we’re off to the Nasher Sculpture Center for “Let’s Make Stuff: Pushing the Envelope with Oil and Cotton.” First we’ll check out the exhibition “Provocations” featuring the architecture and design of the Heatherwick Studio. The innovative holiday cards the studio has on display will serve as inspiration for making our own mailable art with the help of Oak Cliff community arts organization Oil and Cotton.

 

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Rock Lottery’s Hook This Year: The Healing Essence Of Music

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Categorized Under: Culture, Music, Uncategorized
Nevada Hill is an influential Dallas artist and musician who turned down an offer to be the beneficiary for Rock Lottery 13. He's at his home in Lakewood with his cockatiel, Lulu.

Nevada Hill is an influential Dallas artist and musician who turned down an offer to be the beneficiary for Rock Lottery 13. He’s at his home in Lakewood with his cockatiel, Lulu.

There’s a show tomorrow night in Denton featuring five bands no one’s ever heard. It’s Rock Lottery, an annual event that mixes up local musicians to form new groups. They have a day to write songs before performing them that night – and the show’s almost always sells out to benefit a charity of the committee’s choice. This year, the beneficiary hits home for one musician on the lineup.

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Balancing Humor and Darkness with Raspberry Jam

This week on Frame of Mind, watch a collection of short films put together by Women in Film Dallas!

  • Tune in to KERA TV on Thursday at 11 PM to catch this week’s episode!

This week’s episode features the following films:

  • “Duck Food” directed by Dewey Taylor, produced by Sara Roberts
  • “Raspberry Jam” directed by Courtney Ware, produced by Meredith Burke
  • “The Long Run” directed by Laura Lilia Treviño and David Garcia
Andrew Sensenig as Stephen McMurphy and Frank Mosley as The Leprechaun. Photo: Ron Gonzalez

Andrew Sensenig as Stephen McMurphy and Frank Mosley as The Leprechaun. Photo: Ron Gonzalez

 

I spoke with Courtney Ware, the director of “Raspberry Jam”

On the idea behind the film:

The writer, Mike Maden, had sent me the script probably two years before we made it.  I had always kept it in my back pocket as a short film that I thought would be very interesting to bring to life.  Schedules finally lined up and we decided to pull the trigger and go ahead and produce that film.

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