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Roundup Pt 2


by Jerome Weeks 11 Jan 2010

JUST THE HARD-TO-MISS ONES: Travel writer Stephen Jermanok visits three new buildings in North Texas for the Boston Globe. Guess which ones?  Maybe the Cowboys Stadium, the Winspear Opera House and the Wyly Theatre? [Stadium project manager Bill] Bury tells me that the arts district is ideal for out-of-towners because you can walk from downtown […]

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JUST THE HARD-TO-MISS ONES: Travel writer Stephen Jermanok visits three new buildings in North Texas for the Boston Globe. Guess which ones?  Maybe the Cowboys Stadium, the Winspear Opera House and the Wyly Theatre?

[Stadium project manager Bill] Bury tells me that the arts district is ideal for out-of-towners because you can walk from downtown hotels like the Ritz-Carlton and Fairmont Dallas to two of the pillars of Southwestern cuisine, Fearing’s and Stephan Pyles, and onward to the night’s performance of a play, opera, or symphony.

“You never have to set foot in a car,’’ says Bury, shaking his head. “Not many places you can do that in Texas.’’

AND HE CALMS STORMS, TOO? The Cleveland Symphony Orchestra is in seriously stalled negotiations with musicians. They’ve been working on month-to-month contracts since September, and the musicians have threatened to go on strike next week, just before the orchestra is set to go on tour. Last Thursday, Jaap van Zweden came into this tense situation — and into a winter storm — as a guest conductor. Plain Dealer music critic Zachary Lewis reports:

Adversity has a way of inspiring great art. For proof, look no further than Severance Hall.

On Thursday, as contract talks eroded and snow flew, the musicians of the Cleveland Orchestra performed in a manner mirroring their solidarity. The few ticketholders who braved the roads heard a concert marked by clarity of vision and a high degree of collaborative cohesion.

Another key part of the event, of course, was guest conductor Jaap van Zweden. The music director of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra was a demonstrative stage personality whose musical choices were sometimes debatable but whose dramatic sense and power to unite were beyond dispute….

In the delicate, pizzicato Scherzo [of Tchaikovsky’s Fourth Symphony], van Zweden discovered a range of dynamics within the realm of softness and reveled in the sheer genius of the music’s resolution. The finale’s fireworks may have been a bit loud, but a crisper, tighter display of virtuosity is hard to imagine.

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