James Levine

Maestro Levine is a paragon of conducting in the United States, with extended tenures at such notable institutions as Tanglewood, the Metropolitan Opera in New York, and the Boston Symphony.

His contribution to the canon is remarkable, as his longevity. He has reputedly not been up to his usual standard since around 2003, a result of various illnesses and resulting physical infirmities.

I have nothing but respect for his intellect, musicianship, and accomplishments.

But whenever I see a picture of him, I notice an uncanny resemblance. Maybe it’s just me.

5 Responses to “James Levine”

  1. January 4, 2011 at 3:02 pm

    Haha, you are too funny. He got scads of talent but was shorted in the looks category, for sure. He does look like a troll doll, come to think of it!

    Lest I seem unkind, he is of course a maestro par excellence and will undoubtedly be remembered for his contributions to music. In a trollish short of way (joke)! 😉

  2. January 4, 2011 at 3:09 pm

    Hilarious–I saw him conducting at the Met a while back when his afro was bigger and blacker–the lights would catch it a certain way sometimes and you did think there was some sort of giant brillo pad bouncing around in the pit!

  3. 3 Boston Margy
    January 5, 2011 at 5:25 pm

    You know, I think you’re on to something here.

  4. January 13, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    I’m not quite sure what you mean by “canon.” He is not a composer (not a major one at least) and does not add new works to the repertoire. He conducts, but a conductor is not a contributor to a musical “canon” any more than a book editor is to a literary one.

    But as far as Levine goes, my mother, who knew little about classical music but knew the faces of the most famous people, was one day walking past the TV as Mr. Levine was emerging from backstage to take the podium. She stopped and stared in disbelief and shock: I wondered what she was gaping at. She finally said, “Oh my GOD, Itzhak Perlman is…WALKING!”

    And Levine’s performance of the Berg Violin Concerto with Anne-Sophie Mutter ranks as my all-time favorite of this work, and maybe one of the top ten CDs in my (fairly large) collection.

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