For the first time an orchestra in mainland China is taking on a foreign music director: the French conductor Michel Plasson is becoming music director of the China National Symphony Orchestra.
As Valery Gergiev leads the London Symphony Orchestra in its season opener, the mesmerising, controversial conductor talks to Ed Vulliamy
You can sense the soul of certain great orchestras, just by seeing where they live. The Chicago Symphony Orchestra – which is about to open the Shell Classic International Series at London’s South Bank Centre – is one of them.
When physicist John Smith spent the night in his garden with the score to Götterdämmerung, the final opera in Richard Wagner’s four-part, 15-hour epic, Der Ring des Nibelungen, he wasn’t interested in its account of the apocalyptic struggle of Norse
In recent years, classical music in China has been experiencing a crescendo. China’s conservatories are turning out child prodigy musicians. Cities are sprouting concert halls, and factories are cranking out violins and pianos. And Chinese cultural officials seem determined that