At a glance ……


Snarky Puppy in performance at SFJAZZ – Courtesy SFJAZZ

Snarky Puppy – “… one of the most internationally respected names in instrumental music” says Jambase – is playing a sold-out season at SFJAZZ this week. Recipient of the 2017 Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Instrumental Album, this Brooklyn-based group has a revolving cast of around a dozen artists who lend their talents to the ensemble’s performances, playing guitars, percussion, horns, keyboards and even strings.

Included in this group of guest performers is an ensemble known as Banda Magda – fellow GroundUP Music artists and regular collaborators of Snarky Puppy – who’ll be appearing with them on Thursday and Sunday this week. Founded by Greek-born singer, keyboardist and composer Magda Giannikou, Banda Magda has a wide repertoire, which includes samba, French chanson, Greek folk tunes, Colombian cambia and Afro-Peruvian lando.

Snarky Puppy is at SFJAZZ from March 1st to 4th. Even though all performances are sold out, there might just be some returns, so keep an eye on the SFJAZZ website.


San Francisco Performances presents a recital by French pianist Pierre-Laurent Aimard at the Herbst Theatre on Friday evening. This is part of a five-state, seven-city solo recital tour of the US which includes performances in New York and Philadelphia as well as San Francisco, before returning to the Cité de la Musique in Paris.

Mr Aimard, described by The Wall Street Journal as “A brilliant musician and an extraordinary visionary”, was awarded the prestigious 2017 International Ernst von Siemens Music Prize, and this season starts his three-year tenure as Artist-in-Residence at London’s Southbank Centre.

On Friday, Pierre-Laurent Aimard will perform works by two composers with whom he is frequently associated – Messiaen and Ligeti – and also Beethoven’s Hammerklavier sonata.

For more information and tickets, visit the San Francisco Performances website.


The Bolshoi Ballet performs Alexei Ratmansky’s 2008 revival of The Flames of Paris in cinemas around the United States and Canada this Sunday. Recorded live at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow on Saturday evening, this production was originally choreographed in 1932, by Vasily Vainonen, to a score by Boris Asafiev. Set against the dramatic and turbulent background of the French Revolution, with scenes depicting the storming of the Tuileries and the march on Paris, the work also draws parallels with the Russian Revolution.

This production stars rising corps de ballet member Margarita Shrainer as Jeanne, with Leading Soloist Igor Tsvirko as Philippe, and members of the impressive Bolshoi company, turning out some stunning performances, with their customary exuberance and passion.

The Flames of Paris can be seen at over 500 select cinemas in the US and Canada on Sunday, March 4th, at 12.55 pm ET and PT, 11.55 am CT and 10.55 am MT. Tickets may be obtained online from BolshoiBalletinCinema (where you can also see a list of theatre locations), or from the box offices of participating theaters.


On Sunday afternoon, Davies Symphony Hall hosts a world premiere performance – Iranian composer Anahita Abbasi’s ….. within the shifting grounds… a work commissioned specially for the San Francisco Symphony Youth Orchestra, in a unique collaboration with the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE).  This work, with its imagery of a lush rainforest, the sound of birds and falling rain, has the orchestra divided into four groups, positioned around the concert hall, each representing differing sounds and colors.  It will be live-streamed on the Symphony’s Facebook page at approximately 2:20 pm Pacific Standard Time.

Also on the program are works by Gabrieli, Carl Ruggles, Richard Strauss, and Michael Burrit, as well as the Symphony No 7 by Beethoven.

The San Francisco Symphony Youth Orchestra and Members of the International Contemporary Ensemble are led by Christian Reif. For more information and tickets, visit the San Francisco Symphony website.


Lianna Haroutounian as Tosca and Mark Delavan as Scarpia in a scene from Act II of Puccini’s ‘Tosca’ – Photo: Cory Weaver/San Francisco Opera

The first Sunday evening of the month is what Classical KDFC refers to as “the night that sings” – when the Bay Area’s classical radio station broadcasts a recording from the archives of San Francisco Opera. This month, it’s a 2014 recording of Giacomo Puccini’s Tosca, starring Armenian soprano Lianna Haroutounian in the title role, with tenor Brian Jagde as Cavaradossi, bass-baritone Mark Delavan as Scarpia and bass-baritone Dale Travis as Sacristan.

Puccini’s powerful work has a particular place in the history of San Francisco Opera. It was performed during the Company’s very first season, in 1923, and again at the re-opening of the War Memorial Opera House in 1997 following its closure for retrofitting. This 2014 production, which marked the Company debut of Ms Haroutounian, has Riccardo Frizza leading the San Francisco Opera Orchestra and Chorus (director Ian Robertson).

The San Francisco Opera broadcast can be heard on Sunday, March 4th at 8.00 pm on Classical KDFC. Visit for tuning frequencies, or to listen online.


Pianist César Cañón – Photo courtesy San Francisco Opera

Before we leave the world of opera, the second performance in the 35th anniversary season of the Schwabacher Recital Series takes place at the Taube Atrium Theatre on Wednesday March 7th. Presented by San Francisco Opera Center and the Merola Opera Program, this series of recitals has, since 1983, not only given music lovers an opportunity to hear stars of the future, but helped to launch the careers of some internationally acclaimed artists.

The first concert features soprano Felicia Moore, bass-baritone Christian Pursell and pianist César Cañón.  For more information and tickets, visit the San Francisco Opera website.



Information sourced from:


Pierre-Laurent Aimard

BY Experience

San Francisco Symphony

San Francisco Opera


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