Virtual concert going with Opus 1

Want to find out about concerts tonight in Cleveland, Cologne or Copenhagen, or sixty-seven other cities around the world?

A good starting point is the Opus 1 database which lists more than 16,000 concerts and operas. This innovative Paris based site was chosen by Time Magazine as one of their top ten 'cool' websites. It isn't totally comprehensive, and it does focus on the bigger venues, but it is still a very useful tool which I frequently use when travelling. For instance it sent me to the chamber concert given by the Berlin Symphony Orchestra which I wrote about recently in Music history rewritten. And there is a lot more on the Opus 1 web site, including chargeable file downloads with a wide range of music by 20th and 21st century composers. The resources also include 50,000 audio tracks from 1,900 composers, 620 biographies, 5,300 programme notes and 12,200 composer images. The web site can sometimes be slow , and membership is needed for some areas, but it is worth hanging on in.

And you don't need to be a world traveller to have fun with Opus 1. Sometimes I enjoy some armchair concert going by finding an interesting concert online, and then playing the programme on CD at home with a glass (or three) of medicinal beverage by my side. This week the virtual concert goer can enjoy the following music if their CD collection is comprehensive enough, and there is a virtual prize for the first reader to confirm they have every one of these works in their library (and I want catalogue numbers as proof!) My sizeable collection falls well short; but I was interested to see Bernard Haitink conducting Roussel's Third Symphony in Boston, a very fine and underrated twentieth century symphony which I have as part of Dutoit's complete Roussel cycle on the super-budget Warner Ultima label:

8.15pm, Monday 23 January 2006
Het Concertgebouw/Grote Zaal Amsterdam, Netherlands
Reinbert de Leeuw, conductor; Rosemary Hardy, soprano; RIAS Chamber Choir; Schönberg Ensemble
Schoenberg: Friede auf Erden (Peace on Earth), for chorus and instruments ad lib, op. 13
Dallapiccola: Liriche greche
Bruno Maderna: Tre liriche greche
Schoenberg: De Profundis, op. 50b
Dallapiccola: Canti di Prigionia

7.30pm, Wednesday 25 January 2006
Symphony Hall Boston, United States
Bernard Haitink, conductor; Richard Goode, piano; Boston Symphony Orchestra
Ravel: Alborada del Gracioso (from Miroirs)
Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 23 in A major, K 488
Debussy: Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune (Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun), for orchestra, L 86
Albert Roussel: Symphony No. 3 in G minor, op. 42

4.00pm, Sunday 29 January 2006
Oper Köln Cologne, Germany
Enrico Dovico, conductor; Christian von Götz, director; Insun Min, Thérèse; Ausrine Stundyte, Ariadne; Oper Köln Chorus; Gürzenich Orchester Köln
Poulenc: Les mamelles de Tirésias (The Breasts of Tirésias), opera, FP 125
Martinu: Ariadne, opera in 1 act, H 370

7.30pm, Tuesday 24 January 2006
City Recital Hall Sydney, Australia
Brodsky Quartet
Peter Sculthorpe: String Quartet No. 11 (Jabiru Dreaming)
Janácek: String Quartet No. 2 (Intimate Letters)
Beamish: Two Burns Songs: Ae Fond Kiss, De'ils Awa Wi' The Excise man
Grainger: Sprig of Thyme (from 13 Folksongs)
Grainger: Died for Love (from 13 Folksongs)
Thomas Ford: Tales of the Supernatural

If your concert is not listed on Opus 1 contact them with details at
With thanks to the Korean/American composer
Beata Moon whose email sparked this article
Report broken links, missing images and other errors to - overgrownpath at hotmail dot co dot uk
Image credit -
Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra
Image owners - if you do not want your picture used in this article please contact me and it will be removed. If bandwidth is a problem with your permission I will host your image.
If you enjoyed this post take An Overgrown Path to Rare Romantic Requiems in Avignon


Anonymous said…
What we're trying to do with Opus 1 is give a concise musical summary about events in a particular city - and to present the various programmes in a detailed but easily viewable manner. We will be developing the site to allow small, independent concert organisers the ability to upload their own concert events directly into our database in the near future. I'd be particularly interested to hear whether people have any suggestions for auditoriums, or cities around the world that we should also be featuring, and which are peoples' favourite auditoriums for acoustics/ambience/concert seasons?

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