Review: John Williams, Boston Pops bring 'Star Wars' universe to stormy Tanglewood

Richard Kaufman
Mass Live

John Williams returned to Tanglewood on Saturday night and The Force was strong with the music legend.

Williams, Hollywood's most honored composer (five Oscars, 22 Grammys and the American Film Institute Lifetime Achievement Award), had missed Film Night last summer due to a back injury. But the 84-year-old returned on a sweltering and stormy summer night to lead the Boston Pops through some of the most memorable pieces he has written for the "Star Wars" films.

Veteran pops conductor Richard Kaufman of Orange County, California's Pacific Symphony presided over the first half of the evening.

"Welcome to the Tanglewood Music Center and Sauna," he told the throng that packed the shed and filled the lawn at the start of an oppressively humid night.

Kaufman recalled his years as a young violinist in the fellowship program at Tanglewood and playing on the Williams scores for "Jaws" and "Close Encounters of the Third Kind."

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Festival Music review: BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Usher Hall, Edinburgh

Matthias Pintscher
Herald Scotland

The programme for this "Festival Celebration" of the music of Pierre Boulez, and dedicated to his memory following his death earlier this year, included a note about his association with the EIF dating from its second year in 1948 to the start of the new millennium. But it could not find room for the occasion at the end of the 1994 Festival when his Paris sonic laboratory IRCAM was installed in the Playhouse for a programme entirely of his own music, performed by the Ensemble InterContemporain.

Yet that occasion was in some ways the nearest precursor to this memorial event, which attempted the bold task of exploring the mind of the master. That conductor Matthias Pintscher and the SSO managed to do just that was the result of a very clever programme extraordinarily well performed. 

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Rosanne Cash
The Concert Across America to End Gun Violence

From the Beacon Theatre in Manhattan to the Top of the Standard in Los Angeles to Lola’s Trailer Park in Fort Worth, TX, musicians are banding together for The Concert Across America to End Gun Violence on Sunday, September 25th.  Jackson Browne, Rosanne Cash, Marc Cohn and Harlem’s Gospel for Teens will headline the concert scheduled for the Beacon Theatre on Sept. 25.  Tickets go on sale Friday, August 12 at 12:00pm here 

Spearheaded by Massachusetts-based Stop Handgun Violence (SHV), Faiths United to Prevent Gun Violence, and dozens of other organizations committed to reducing gun violence, this nationwide effort will feature a diverse array of artists performing at venues ranging from churches and school gymnasiums to honky-tonks, hotel rooftops and theatres.

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