In Sunday’s (11/8) Seattle Times, Ellen Emry Heltzel reviews Melinda Bargreen’s Classical Seattle: Maestros, Impresarios, Virtuosi, and Other Music Makers, recently published by the University of Washington Press. Heltzel describes the book as “a who’s who of the city’s classical-music scene over the past half-century, an entertaining recapitulation of interviews [Bargreen] did while serving as the music critic for The Seattle Times and writing for other publications. It’s also a window on pivotal events, most prominent among them the 1962 Seattle World’s Fair, which brought the city not only big-city muscle but also new expectations about the performing arts. Reading Bargreen’s book, you can draw a straight line from the staging of Verdi’s opera ‘Aida’ at the fair to the construction of Benaroya Hall in the 1990s and the Marion Oliver McCaw Hall, which opened in 2003: All required the force of personality and a belief that Seattle was ready to reach for the stars.”

Posted November 11, 2015