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Classical Notes

Classical Notes: October 27, 2006 Archive

Singing in the Sling

Posted at 7:11 AM on October 27, 2006 by John Zech
Filed under: The blog

You normally associate a torn rotator cuff with athletes, not tenors. But the rising operatic star Salvatore Licitra found out at the hospital Tuesday night in New York that in addition to a bleeding leg, the pain in his shoulder was a torn rotator cuff. He tripped in the dark as he was getting out of a cab and came down pretty hard on the pavement. This tenor is a trooper however, and last night at the Met he sang the role of the cuckolded clown Canio ("Laugh, clown, laugh!") in Pagliacci.

His arm was in a sling, and they had to re-block some of the physical stuff he was originally supposed to do, but it went fine. More on what happened from the Met Opera's site.

A is for Anderson (Leroy Anderson)

Posted at 1:46 PM on October 27, 2006 by Rex Levang

Starting to make my way, on an irregular basis, through the musical alphabet, and leading off with Leroy Anderson, if only because the new Symphony magazine that just arrived today includes an affectionate tribute to him by Richard Dyer. (Symphony is published by the American Symphony Orchestra League -- unfortunately Dyer's article isn't online yet.)

Anderson is the composer of such pops-concerts stalwarts as "The Syncopated Clock," "Jazz Pizzicato," and the perennial holiday favorite "Sleigh Ride." When I was in college, my music-addicted buddies and I looked down on Leroy Anderson as the nadir of musical taste.

Well, times and fashions have changed, as Dyer's article suggests. One of Mark Morris's big hits is an Anderson-based ballet, and the Naxos label is preparing an edition of Anderson's complete works, presided over by no less than Leonard Slatkin.

Dyer's article includes an example of Anderson's humor. He played quite a few musical instruments: piano, organ, double bass, trombone, tuba and accordion. He once explained that he had only played the latter instrument for a short time, adding, "Probably a short time is just about the right time to play the accordion."

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