Friday, 31 December 2010

Good News #5: Lot of Good Music, Even if the CBC/Radio Can Isn't Broadcasting as Much

Christopher Huss in Le Devoir recently gave a list of the 1o best classical concerts of 2010 in Montreal and, wonder of wonders, we actually heard two of them. He gave high marks to closing concert of the Bach festival, a performance of the Six Suites for Cello, played by Jean-Guihen Queyras.

The Ensemble Arion concert with the captivating Italian violinist Stefano Montanari playing Vivaldi's Four Seasons was also terrific. Here he is doing a whistling rehearsal of the work with that other excellent Canadian group Tafelmusik

We also very much liked Laura Andriani's performance of Bach's partitas and sonatas for violin, presented by Da Capo in November. Huss didn't attend: if he had, I'm sure he would have loved it.

But the sad state of serious music on the CBC and Radio Canada was brought home in December when we went 10 days without our CDs while they were being cleaned after the fire, and had to listen to the radio to get our music fix. Nothing of interest most evenings, and we ended up listening to the classical music station, commercials and all, CJPX. It was better than nothing, but their play list got rather repetitive. The station appears to be holding its own, according to PPM ratings which hover around 4.3 per cent of the Franco market share and 2.4 per cent of the Anglo market.

As for the "music" sevices of our public broadcasters, between the spring and fall 2010 periods Espace Musique dropped from 2.1 to 1.5, while Radio Two went up a bit from 2.5 to 3.1. Can that be due to more classical concerts being promoted in the evenings? Would like to be able to have more detailed information, but that's something you got to pay for handsomely.

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