Patric Standford may have written these short pieces deliberately to provoke our feedback. If so, his success is reflected in the rich range of readers' comments appearing at the foot of most of the pages.
Born into a Russian Jewish migrant family in Brooklyn, New York on 26 September 1898, was George Gershwin. His extraordinary talent in music gave a decisive edge to his career and drew forth immortal 'classics' such as the Rhapsody in Blue and, even more remarkable, the opera Porgy and Bess. He died in Hollywood on 11 July 1937.
Defining Our Field - John Dante Prevedini asks what is 'classical music' to us, why are we involved and what can we learn from our differences?
Ensemble. A Higher Synthesis - Adam J Sacks marks the re-convening of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra
CD Spotlight. Great Entertainment - SOMM Recordings' second volume of film music, enjoyed by Gerald Fenech. 'Iain Sutherland and his Promenade players display no want of energy and each track is tackled with effervescence and enthusiasm, making the music sound even more exciting than it was thought to be.'
CD Spotlight. Engrossing Memories - Giuseppe Pennisi listens to music by Gershwin, Copland and Bernstein. 'The Wolf Trap Opera National Orchestral Institute Philharmonic, conducted by James Judd, offers very professional, but not startling, performances.'
Ensemble. A Veritable Cat's Cradle - Mike Wheeler listens to Robert and Clara Schumann, Chopin, Grieg and Cheryl Frances-Hoad, played by British pianist Tom Poster
Ensemble. Relaxed and Exuberant - Mike Wheeler listens to Cavendish Winds playing Mozart, Danzi, Debussy, Arnold, Vaughan Williams, Holst, Bozza, Ligeti and Gershwin
Profile. An Innate Songster - On George Gershwin's birthday, George Colerick takes a critical look at the composer of 'Rhapsody in Blue'
Microtonal Trills and Tremolos - Luca Luciano pushes the boundaries of clarinet playing, impressing Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Improvisatory Freedom - Gerald Fenech listens to pianist Myron Romanul. 'Romanul's playing brims with an expressive power that generates its own excitement and self-belief ...'
Ensemble. Diction and Projection - A performance by The Hills Singers impresses Keith Bramich
CD Spotlight. Mood Enhancing - 360 Degree Guitar Duo, heard by the late Howard Smith. '... ideal for relaxation with a chianti ...'
Ensemble. Showing the Wild Side - A clarinet and piano recital by Hannah Gobbett and Hugh Morris, entertains Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Musical Values - Lara Downes plays Coleridge-Taylor, Chopin, Bloch, Bernstein transcriptions and Gershwin, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Real Emotions - Two concerts in Salzburg impress Giuseppe Pennisi
Ensemble. Irridescent Colours - Copland, Ravel and Gershwin from Steven Osborne, the Hallé Orchestra and Louis Langrée, heard by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Performance Technique - Cameron Roberts' piano transcriptions, heard by the late Howard Smith. 'The novelty value of this crystal clear recording can hardly be denied.'
CD Spotlight. Engagingly Performed - Rachel and Vanessa Fuidge at one and two pianos, recommended by the late Howard Smith. '... technique, tonal address and aural poetry.'
CD Spotlight. Expertly Sculpted - James Brawn's time traveller recital delights Andrew Schartmann. 'Each time a passage repeats ... Brawn shows us something new.'
CD Spotlight. A Huge Showcase - American soprano Patrice Michaels impresses Paul Sarcich. 'Plenty of good things here ...'
A Strong Impression - Mark Bebbington makes a return visit to Nottingham, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. 'Fantasia' Around The World - Giuseppe Pennisi visits the big screen in Rome
Ensemble. Well Served - Mike Wheeler listens to Joo Yeon Sir and Irina Andrievsky
CD Spotlight. Crossover Soprano - A recital by Rebecca Newman, heard by the late Howard Smith. 'The singer's voice is firm with secure intonation ...'
DVD Spotlight. Strong Voices - 'Porgy and Bess' from San Francisco Opera, appreciated by Ron Bierman. '... John DeMain leads the opera orchestra in a performance that blends well with the voices ...'
Ensemble. Refreshingly Inventive - A recital by Soraya Mafi and Ian Tindale captivates Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Slickly Professional - The latest in Cala Records' 'London Sound' series impresses Howard Smith. '... music of surpassing excellence.'
Ensemble. Americans in Rome - Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia's Gershwin Gala, attended by Giuseppe Pennisi
Ensemble. Vivid Evocation - Mark Bebbington plays Beethoven, Ireland, Chopin and Gershwin, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Music on the Move - Derby Concert Orchestra at Christmas, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Consummate Professionalism - Nigel Ogden begins Derby Cathedral's series of summer organ recitals, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Hugely Enjoyable - Mike Wheeler listens to the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Beautifully Spun - Steven Osborne's Prokofiev, Ravel and Rachmaninov impress Keith Bramich
CD Spotlight. Mature Style - Music by Gershwin and David Nisbet Stewart, heard by Howard Smith. '... Stewart's impressive Concerto for Piano and Orchestra.'
CD Spotlight. Velvet Quality - Violin lullabies from Rachel Barton Pine, heard by Howard Smith. '... soporific, inescapable uniformity.'
CD Spotlight. Quite Splendid - American vocal and symphonic music, heard by Bill Newman. '... much enjoyment and interest ...'
Great Delicacy - Jenny Lin at Notttingham's Royal Concert Hall, heard by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. The Finest of Them All - The 2012 Hereford Three Choirs Festival, reviewed by Roderic Dunnett
CD Spotlight. Much Élan - Music by Gershwin, heard by Robert Anderson. 'Eugene List is a brilliant and idiomatic keyboard soloist ...'
Ensemble. A Major Treat - Maria Nockin listens to soprano Amber Wagner
South Bank Pianists - Bill Newman listens to Peter Donohoe, Richard Goode and Peter Jablonski
Ensemble. Remarkable Performance - Eisler, Gershwin, Mozart, Poulenc, Schumann and Weill from Katie Bray and William Vann, heard by Mike Wheeler
Consummate Artists - Malcolm Troup reports on the BPSE Summer Festival at London's Regent Hall, where for the first time Music, not consumerism, called the shots
DVD Spotlight. Not for Everyone - A collaboration between Turnage and Scofield, reviewed by Ron Bierman. '... well executed ...'
CD Spotlight. Seductive Rhythms - Reconstructed Gershwin piano music, heard by Robert Anderson. '... Alicia Zizzo ... can tackle whatever bravura demands Gershwin may make on her ...'
CD Spotlight. Compelling and Pleasurable - Arthur Friedheim plays Liszt, Chopin, Gottschalk and Henselt, heard by Patric Standford. '... a slightly improvisatory interpretation ...'
Ensemble. Wonderfully Smoochy - The Royal Philharmonic's Gershwin celebration in Nottingham, heard by Mike Wheeler
Profile. Humanizing Emotions - American conductor James Conlon talks to Maria Nockin
Ensemble. Vigour and Brilliance - The City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra plays Adams, Bernstein, Falla and Gershwin, heard by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Delicate Mastery - Orchestral music by Glazunov, reviewed by Robert Anderson. '... dashingly done ...'
Highly Impressive - A recital by Michael Ierace, enjoyed by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Hugely Satisfying - As New Zealand arts funding strikes a sour note, Howard Smith listens to the Vector Wellington Orchestra
CD Spotlight. Lightness of Touch - Brahms and Strauss, heard by Patric Standford. '... a very fine performance by Joshua Pierce ...'
Masks - Jennifer Paull continues her investigation of musical and theatrical masks
Masks - Jennifer Paull investigates a layering of musical and theatrical masks, with the omnipresent eerie reminder of the gas mask
Ensemble. Splendidly Imaginative - Julian Jacobson and Meng Yang Pan celebrate Valentine's Day and Chinese New Year, enjoyed by Mary Isaac
CD Spotlight. Musical Finesse - Songs by Gregg Kallor, recommended by Howard Smith. 'Go to the top of the class.'
Eleven Days without 'Aunt Mary' - Carolyn Ellis describes an unusual problem whilst travelling
Slaying 'The Dragon' - Carolyn Ellis writes about her battle with Gershwin and the metronome
CD Spotlight. Glittering Technique - Music by Gershwin for piano and orchestra, reviewed by Howard Smith. '... commendable drive and clarity.'
CD Spotlight. Chameleon Virtues - Barenboim conducts Gershwin, Bernstein, Ravel and Wagner, reviewed by Robert Anderson. '... the oddest assortment of music.'
Ensemble. Tonal Luxuriance - Lawrence Budmen reports from Tanglewood 2009
Ensemble. Compelling Performance - Members of Psappha at the Buxton Festival, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Refreshing Surprises - A concert in London by the Zemel Choir, enjoyed by Malcolm Miller
Ensemble. Exciting Results - A new partnership between Charles Dutoit and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, experienced by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. A Curate's Egg - Tangos and fantasies, explored by Howard Smith. '... good in parts.'
Unflagging Energy - Nicola Meecham plays Haydn, Schubert, Ravel, Prokofiev and Gershwin, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Fizzing Performances - The Derby Concert Orchestra and Chorale in Christmas mood, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Music in Captivity - Malcolm Miller was at a lecture recital by Ronald Senator, with Teresa Gobel and Miriam Brickman
DVD Spotlight. Moving and Powerful - Gershwin's 'Porgy and Bess', appreciated by Robert Anderson. 'The work is in the safest possible hands ...'
Ensemble. Sparkling Performances - Yvonne Kenny and Iain Burnside at London's Wigmore Hall, reviewed by Robert Hugill
CD Spotlight. Something for Everyone - A new CD from The 5 Browns, enjoyed by Kelly Ferjutz. '... charming, vivacious, passionate and gorgeously performed.'
CD Spotlight. Peking order - Bartók, Bernstein and Gershwin from the Pekinel Sisters, reviewed by Howard Smith. '... positively 'aerodynamic' in its clarity, audacity and panache.'
Ensemble. Alert rhythmic sense - The Tempest Saxophone Quartet in concert, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Pervasive influence - A return visit to London by the Verdehr Trio, reviewed by Peter Dickinson
Record box. Buy or despair - The Rastrelli cello quartet, reviewed by Alice McVeigh
Simple gifts? - David Thompson is impressed by 'Copland Connotations - Studies and Interviews'
Record box - Four-handed music. Igor Kipnis & Karen Kushner, with Basil Ramsey