Angela Allen

‘Porgy and Bess’ review: Catfish Row Northwest

Seattle Opera’s elaborate new production complements Gershwin’s American classic

Originally Published in Oregon ArtsWatch August 2018

The stars, and there were several, could have carried Seattle Opera’s Porgy and Bess. But they didn’t have to. Conceived by Francesca Zambello, the production was spot-on in so many ways—emotionally attuned, musically uplifting, edgily designed and lit— that there was no need for the fine singers, several on the rise, to work overtime. Read More

Chamber Music Northwest review: unexpected stars

Young performers and composer supply the spark in festival's opening concerts

Originally Published in Oregon ArtsWatch July 2018

If you think jazz and marching-band musicians are the sole owners of the johnny-come-late instrument developed in the mid-1800s by Belgian Adolphe Sax, you’re not hearing enough saxophone music. Read More

Growing Voices

Founded by a pair of Oregon opera stars, VOXnorthwest Voice Studio gives young singers a recipe for success

Originally Published in Oregon ArtsWatch June 2018

“I’m not feeling the high note now,” says Karsten George, shaking his head while rehearsing at Portland State University’s Lincoln Hall one late-May afternoon. Read More

Lots of spark

Carolyn Kuan – Portland Opera: Toi Toi Toi

Originally Published in artslandia May 2018

Artslandia’s conversation with barrier-busting conductor Carolyn Kuan, who’ll lead Portland Opera’s production of La Cenerentola this season, reveals our good fortune that she couldn’t settle on which instrument to play. Read More

Cécile (McLorin Salvant) review: first-name basis

Rising jazz vocalist draws deep admiration and girl crushes from female Portland jazz singers

Originally Published in Oregon ArtsWatch May 2018

She is the It Girl among jazz vocalists. Her singing has it all: perfect pitch, a range from tenor to high soprano, precise articulation, full-on emotion, playfulness, varying timbres. Read More

‘Albert Herring’ review: keeping it fresh

Portland State University production overcomes the challenges posed by Benjamin Britten’s mid-20th century opera

Originally Published in Oregon ArtsWatch April 2018

British composer Benjamin Britten’s Albert Herring is a challenging opera for both performers and audiences accustomed to the usual Romantic classics. Though funny, it proved a serious undertaking for the Portland State University Opera this week at Lincoln Performance Hall. Read More

Grownup stories; Mercury rising

Courtney Freed's tribute to Freddie Mercury and Rosalinde Block's "grownup" tales explore the possibilities of the solo show

Originally Published in Oregon ArtsWatch April 2018

Something poignant resonated from the one-woman musicals Don’t Stop Me Now and Drama of the Gifted Grownup that appeared recently in Portland. Read More

New World to real world

An Oregon classical bassist steps toward the future in Miami with the legendary Michael Tilson Thomas and the New World Symphony

Originally Published in Oregon ArtsWatch April 2018

Kyle Sanborn, a gifted musician, knows he’s on his way to playing many more Beethoven symphonies and Brahms concertos in his orchestra blacks. Born and reared in Portland, he is a first-year fellow – don’t call him a student – at the New World Symphony in Miami Beach, Fla., a laboratory in its 30th year of educating classical music’s next generation. Read More