Podcast: William Bolcom in Linz

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Travel with me to Linz, for the premiere of Bill Bolcom’s opera McTeague! In this episode of American Highways, we fly to Austria with pianist Guy Livingston to hear William Bolcom’s opera McTeague, in its European premiere.

Guy talks with conductor Dennis Russell Davies, publisher Evan Hause, and Bill Bolcom himself. Is this tragic opera Dadaist? Or a darker version of Broadway? Or a new genre?

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The opera McTeague is mostly set on a San Francisco street, with McTeague’s dentistry on the right. In this photo, the cowboys on the far right are hanging up an enormous gold tooth. Photo 2016 by Patrick Pfeiffer

 

AMERICAN HIGHWAYS #39 WILLIAM BOLCOM in LINZ

Theme Music :
Steve Reich. The Desert Music (1984)
First Movement (Fast).
Chorus of the Brooklyn Philharmonic, Members of the Brooklyn Philharmonic, Michael Tilson Thomas & William Carlos Williams.
Nonesuch Records 79101.

William Bolcom, composer; Arnold Weinstein, librettist.
Excerpts from the opera McTeague:
from Act I: Party Scene
from Act I: Gold Can Kill You
from Act II: Dead Men
Linz Bruckner Orchestra, conducted by Dennis Russell Davies.
private recording.

the moon above Trina  – who is going crazy over the gold coins she holds onto desperately…photo 2016 by Patrick Pfeiffer

 

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McTeague discovers his future wife Trina’s beautiful hair…photo 2016 by Patrick Pfeiffer

William Bolcom
“Recuerdos”
7. Chôro (Homage to Nazareth) (3:38)
8. Paseo (4:59)
9. Valse Venezolano (4:14)
Susan & Sarah Wang, pianists.
NAXOS 8.559244

William Bolcom
Cello Sonata
I. Allegro inquieto – Non troppo presto (7:23)
II. Adagio semplice (7:56)
III. Allegro assai – Steady tempo, but uneasy (3:05)
Norman Fischer, cellist; and Jeanne Kierman Fischer, pianist.
NAXOS 8.559348

William Bolcom composer; Mark Campbell, librettist
Lucrezia
3. Duet: I Do Not Know Her Name (3:06)
4. Duet: Okay, I Think I Have A Plan (1:31)
sung by Paul Appleby, Sasha Cooke, Steven Blier, Michael Barrett, and Patrick Mason.
BRIDGE RECORDS 9299 A/6

 

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We’re Dead Men…the tragicomic ending of McTeague

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