Monday, January 11, 2010

Nashville Symphony Announces 2010/11 Schedule

Posted By on Mon, Jan 11, 2010 at 2:46 PM

Pianist André Watts
  • Pianist André Watts
From Scene classical correspondent Russell Johnston:
Yesterday, The Nashville Symphony announced what has to be its most ambitious season to date. The 2010/11 concert schedule encompasses old favorites and world premieres, and a long list of guest artists features great pianist André Watts, conductor and NSO ally Leonard Slatkin, and the conductorless Orpheus Chamber Orchestra as well as numerous younger virtuosos. The wide-ranging repertoire includes familiar concertos by Beethoven, Brahms and Rachmaninoff, modern landmarks like Stravinsky's Rite of Spring and Berg's Lyric Suite, well-tested contemporary composers like John Adams and Joan Tower, and newly commissioned works from more recent arrivals like Daniel Bernard Roumain. Trust us, that's a just small sample--we haven't even mentioned any of the intriguing lesser-known works on offer. Two colossal works by Mahler neatly flank the schedule. September's gala opening will assemble a cast of hundreds to play and sing his all-embracing Symphony No. 8, and the season closes with the early Symphony No. 2. Mahler's broad, expressive scope and crystalline orchestration perfectly suit the NSO's spacious and transparent sound. Is it too much to hope for a full Mahler cycle from Maestro Guerrero over seasons to come?

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Edmondson Park: A Review

Posted By on Mon, Jan 11, 2010 at 1:07 PM

In Short: Location: Along Charlotte, just east of 17th Avenue
Edmondson Park--Park or Wasted Space?
  • Edmondson Park--Park or Wasted Space?
Crowds: None Approximate Age of Patrons: 35 Topics of Conversation: "Why didn't I bring gloves?!" Stray Dogs Seen: None Types of Vehicles in Parking Lots: No parking lots associated with the park. Perceived Safety: Very safe, since park was totally empty Number of Gunshots Heard: None Dog Friendliness: No poop bags, but it's a nice stretch of green Number of pitbulls sighted: None Accessibility: Um...Yes, it's accessible. Why you'd go there, I'm not sure. Incorporation of Local History: Better than most parks, but not as much as I'd like Recommended patrons: People who live near it and don't have kids, connoisseurs of random fencing.

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Breaking News: People Who Don't Live By the Fairgrounds Don't Think It Should Close

Posted By on Mon, Jan 11, 2010 at 12:12 PM

Everybody loves the Tennessee State Fairgrounds site, it seems, when it's Not In My Back Yard. Or so suggests Metro Councilman Jason Holleman, who told WPLN's Nina Cardona that a surprising number of constituents in his West Nashville district (which includes far-off Sylvan Park and Richland Creek) have expressed misgivings about shutting down the racetrack/flea market/carnival hub:
"The number of people that have expressed concern about closing it down and doing away with it I think has had an impact on my viewpoint. ...Right now we're closing one thing down without offering an alternative plan, which ultimately limits the choices we have available to us."
Thanks, Sylvan Park. In exchange, you can be the first to host all those residential LED signs on your turf.

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Should We Fix the Water Pipes First?

Posted By on Mon, Jan 11, 2010 at 10:15 AM

OK, if a poll showing overwhelming public opposition isn't enough to derail Mayor Karl Dean's new convention center, how about downtown's giant water main break? Seriously, if we have century-old pipes bursting, closing businesses and generally causing chaos, do we really have enough extra cash to embark on our biggest construction project ever? Talk about a third-rate municipal public-works infrastructure.

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Red State Update: Jackie Prays for Tiger Woods

Posted By on Mon, Jan 11, 2010 at 10:00 AM

Election Reform Activists Go on High Alert Against Senate Attack

Posted By on Mon, Jan 11, 2010 at 7:15 AM

Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey is making good on his pledge to give his top priority to delaying the Tennessee Voter Confidence Act. Ramsey has placed it on Tuesday's Senate agenda, one of only five bills up for votes before the start of the special session on education reform. Election reform activists have been spurred into action and hope to mobilize in time to stop Ramsey and the Republican-run Senate. "This means we have only one day to flood the Capitol with calls," Liberadio(!) cohost Mary Mancini tells supporters in an email alert.

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Ford's Press Goes from Bad to Brutal: 'A Clown Bringing His Act to New York'

Posted By on Mon, Jan 11, 2010 at 6:39 AM

In gladiator movies, they throw spears at the poor guy first, and then they unleash the lions and tigers. We thought New Yorkers were rough on Harold Ford Jr. last week. But they were just getting started. They're brutalizing him now as he contemplates whether to challenge Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand in this year's Democratic primary. It looks like the bloodthirsty mob's giving Ford a big thumbs down. A sampling of the latest:

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Bredesen Talks Special Session, Budget Cuts

Posted By on Mon, Jan 11, 2010 at 6:20 AM

Gibbons Slaps Haslam Again for Hiding Pilot Oil Wealth

Posted By on Mon, Jan 11, 2010 at 6:08 AM

Video from the Tennessee Report In Nashville last week to tout his plan for more openness in government, Bill Gibbons took the opportunity to go after Bill Haslam yet again for his refusal to disclose his Pilot Oil income.
"Every time the state of Tennessee improves or builds a new interchange on the interstate, Pilot Oil has an interest. Now, is that a big conflict for Mayor Haslam or a small conflict? Frankly we don't know because he will not tell us the amount of income he's getting from Pilot Oil. The public needs to know that and the most reliable way of knowing that is for him to release his income tax returns."
What's Haslam Hiding?: Here's a roundup of previous criticism from the media and the rest of Haslam's Republican opponents in the governor's race. Gibbons has been particularly persistent. Here is our question for you, Pith Nation: Should we all care passionately whether Haslam releases his income tax returns, or is this just a phony issue created by bored political reporters and kept alive by Haslam's desperate rivals? Update: Don Sundquist says Republicans will win the governor's race if they "keep it civil" in their primary. He cites "uncalled-for and unnecessary" comments about Haslam's finances.

Morning Roundup: Lawmakers Return to the Capitol for Fun-Filled Special Session

Posted By on Mon, Jan 11, 2010 at 5:43 AM

The Tennessee Education Association agrees in a major concession to let student tests count for 35 percent of teacher tenure evaluations. If you're keeping score at home, that's at least 15 percent less than the number the governor had in mind. An excited Andy Sher reports "the move puts TEA, which represents teachers, on a collision course with the Bredesen administration during the special legislative session on education that starts Tuesday." But the administration bill won't mention any percentage. Instead, Chas Sisk reports, it will set up a special advisory panel to work out that little detail. That apparently leaves only a couple of sticking points: Who sits on the panel and will its decisions be final? House Democratic leader Gary Odom:
"If a compromise can't be reached, and the TEA's dug in, we have to work through that. I'm optimistic that it can be a matter we can work out, but it depends on how far apart the parties are."

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