143 Articles

January 1, 1989

Playing It Safe

Take two Aspern: one a world premiere by the Dallas Opera, the other the Henry James novella on which the opera is based. Which is better for you?

Classical Music|
December 1, 1987

That’s Entertainment

The Houston Grand Opera was out to impress, with its new house and three ambitious productions in one week, but what it proved best was just how enjoyable this brand of theater can be.

Classical Music|
June 30, 1987

Singing All the Way

Mary Jane Johnson and Timothy Jenkins live in Amarillo, but they’re at home in the world’s great opera houses.

Classical Music|
January 1, 1987

Enter, With Trumpets

A series of world premieres commissioned by the Houston Symphony Orchestra has brought a dash of fanfare to Jones Hall.

Classical Music|
September 30, 1986

For the Love of Bach

The Dallas Bach Society combines crackerjack musicians, a well-trained choir, and top-ranked vocal soloists—the result is a baroque-music lover’s dream.

Classical Music|
March 1, 1986

Changing the Tune

Some new recordings of old symphonies reveal how the composers really wanted things to sound.

Classical Music|
February 1, 1986

No-shows and Great Shows

The only excitement of the Dallas Opera season came from a couple of fortunate gambles, while the Houston Grand Opera triumphed by bringing Faust alive for contemporary audiences.

Classical Music|
December 1, 1985

Desire and Memory

The Ups and Downs of Theophilus Maitland had more ups than downs in Dallas, but Memorial Candles didn’t have much memorable melody.

Classical Music|
September 30, 1985

True to the Past

Forget all that debate about early instruments versus modern ones for eighteenth-century music.

Classical Music|
July 31, 1985

Short and Sweet

Sometimes the opera is over before the fat lady sings. Consider the successful debut of sixteen brief and eclectic works commissioned by the Texas Opera Theater.

Classical Music|
April 30, 1985

Operatic Adventures

A little gimmickry goes a long way toward making the Fort Worth Opera's current season a success.

Classical Music|
April 1, 1985

Contemporary Classic

The octogenarian whom many believe to be the greatest living composer pays a long-awaited visit to Texas.

Classical Music|
February 1, 1985

Strummin’ On the Old Gamba

Using antique and original instruments like the viola da gamba, the Texas Baroque Ensemble is making Garland the place to hear early music in Texas.

Classical Music|
September 30, 1984

Brahms the Bountiful

A flood of new Brahms recordings that honor the composer’s 150th birthday reveals an oeuvre of surprising richness.

Classical Music|
August 31, 1984

Opera For Beginners

The Public Opera of Dallas aimed its first season at opera greenhorns and scored two bull’s-eyes.

Classical Music|
July 31, 1984

A Flop

At this year’s dismal San Antonio Festival, the English National Opera and the Texas productions were the only shows worth seeing.

July 31, 1984

Dancing Up a Cliché

Jamboree, a new Joffrey ballet commissioned by the City of San Antonio, features prancing rhinestone cowboys and just plain silly choreography.

May 31, 1984

Top O’ the Pops

The fare offered by the Houston Pops Orchestra may not be highbrow, but conductor Ned Battista thinks it’s American music at its best.

April 30, 1984

Awash in the Limelight

New blood and a commitment to high standards at the Theater Center and the Plaza have helped to make this theatrical season Dallas’ best.

April 1, 1984

Alley of Aspirations

Houston’s well-heeled Alley Theatre is trying to pass itself off as a national theater. Across town, the Chocolate Bayou is just trying to hang on.

Classical Music|
March 1, 1984

Who Needs Singers?

In conductor’s opera, each of the vocalists becomes just one more instrument in the musical ensemble.

Classical Music|
December 1, 1983

The Courage of Their Compositions

These days the Houston Symphony Orchestra isn’t playing the same old thing. Conductor Sergiu Comissiona battles boredom by playing brand-new works and little-heard older ones.

November 1, 1983

The Palace of Pros

With The Palace of Amateurs, the Plaza Theatre brought a sparkling Mariel Hemingway to Dallas and a lofty new theatrical standard to Texas.

Classical Music|
November 1, 1983

A Soprano Is Born

Houston likes to think it discovered Erie Mills, but it’s willing to share the winning young star with the rest of the opera world.

Classical Music|
August 31, 1983

A Chamber of Music

Jim Cartwright has a classic case of obsession-he owns thousands of records. Under Sung Kwak the Austin Symphony has gone from mediocre to memorable.

Classical Music|
July 31, 1983

Something for Everyone

The ambitious San Antonio Festival went all out, with 73 acts-everything from Dallas ballet to Berlin opera, from Robert Merrill to Sarah Vaughan. Houston Grand Opera and Leonard Bernstein both made mistakes in A Quiet Place.

Classical Music|
June 30, 1983

Those Raucous Babylonians

This spring both of Texas’ top symphonies staged the late William Walton’s Belshazzar’s Fest. Dallas held back, but Houston made merry with the splashy biblical spectacle.

Classical Music|
May 31, 1983

Midland on a String

From out of the West Texas plains comes the rich, beautiful sound of the Thouvenel String Quartet.

Classical Music|
April 30, 1983

Happy Birthday, Franz and Igor

Both Haydn and Stravinsky marked special anniversaries last year, but music lovers got the presents: a shower of fresh new versions of their works.

Classical Music|
April 1, 1983


Once touted, now routed, San Antonio’s opera takes its last bow.

Classical Music|
February 1, 1983

Standing Room Opera

Texas opera lovers would have ended the season happily just having seen a lively Rosenkavalier, a magical Rheingold, and a fiery Wozzeck. But then the Houston Grand Opera’s Pagliacci came along and took their breath away.

December 1, 1982

Bringing Down The House

The board of the Dallas Theater Center is fighting with its stuck-in-a-rut staff to pull the company out of its decade of doldrums.

Classical Music|
December 1, 1982


On Christmas Day, people all across the country can tune in to PBS to hear the Concert Chorale of Houston sing the Messiah. That’s reason to rejoice.

November 1, 1982

Halftime Heroes

The bright-eyed, pink-cheeked cream of Texas youth aren’t scrambling on the football field. They’re playing in the high school band.

Classical Music|
November 1, 1982

From The Mouth Of Saints

Four Saints isn’t a solemn Gregorian chant but a lovable American opera. New LPs of Brahms, Shostakovich, and Bach are worth a second listen.

August 31, 1982

The Midas Touch

In the past two years Kjehl Rasmussen has opened two acclaimed Dallas theaters and directed a hit musical. And that’s just for starters.

Classical Music|
July 31, 1982

Ol’ Man Musical

Houston Grand Opera dedicated a lot of its budget and all of its heart to producing not an opera but an American musical—Show Boat.

June 30, 1982

A Generous Helping

Houston’s Stages theater gave new writers a push and established writers a pat when it put on a Texans-only playwrights’ festival.

May 31, 1982

Hands Across The Ocean

British playwright Alan Ayckbourn dropped in on his American cousins at Houston’s Alley Theatre and directed the U.S. premiere of his latest and most innovative work.

Classical Music|
April 30, 1982

They’re Playing Our Song—Again

The Pachelbel Canon has gone Hollywood and become the best-selling classical piece in the country. Works by Bach, Mozart, and Wagner are managing to hold their own, too.

Dining Out|
March 1, 1982

Hot Pasta

From their antipastos to their cannoli, three restaurants are leading Texans to the pure, simple pleasures of classical Italian cooking.

Classical Music|
March 1, 1982

The Score In Houston

Two young conductors are rousing audiences in Houston and making motions toward becoming the country’s finest maestros.

December 1, 1981

Our Son, The Murderer

Dallas’ Stage #1 proves it’s worthy of its name with a gut-wrenching production about a family torn apart.

Dining Out|
November 1, 1981

Bread and Circuses

At San Antonio’s Mi Tierra, you’ll see the rabble, the rich, and everyone in between, all feasting on Tex-Mex and homemade pan dulce.

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