Peter Burwasser is a writer in Philadelphia. He is a critic for Fanfare magazine and is the program annotator for Curtis Opera Theater. In the past he has been a contributor at the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Pew Charitable Trusts and Philadelphia Music Makers Magazine, and was the long time classical music critic for Philadelphia City Paper. Peter is a board member and the past president of the Musical Fund Society of Philadelphia and is a current trustee of the Presser Foundation.
By this Author
‘Girl in the Snow’ and ‘Nineteen movements for unaccompanied cello’ by Scott Ordway
Music of memory, dreams, and love
Philadelphia composer Scott Ordway’s music is featured on two new recordings on the Acis label, including ‘Girl in the Snow,’ a beautiful song cycle, and a large work for solo cello. Peter Burwasser reviews.
‘The Music of Friends’ by David W. Webber
American classical music grows up
Since 1946, Vermont’s Chamber Music Conference has been an important part of American musical life, attracting many Philadelphia luminaries. A new book, ‘The Music of Friends,’ tells the story. Peter Burwasser reviews.
Albany Records presents ‘Descent/Return: Music of John Harbison and James Primosch’
A musical friendship
An album of music for solo piano and songs for soprano includes works by long-time Penn faculty member James Primosch, as well as music from one of his revered mentors, John Harbison. Peter Burwasser reviews.
‘Now Your Colors Sing’ by Gerald Levinson
A 48-year suite
A new double album from Swarthmore-based composer Gerald Levinson is a retrospective of a leading light of the Philadelphia new-music scene and beyond, bursting with bright hues and grand sonorities.
‘Synthesizer Pioneer: The Early Electronic Music of Andrew Rudin’ from Centaur Records
When the Moog was young
‘Synthesizer Pioneer’ from Centaur Records offers a survey of the quirky music for Moog Synthesizer from veteran Philadelphia composer Andrew Rudin. Peter Burwasser reviews.
The Cincinnati Vocal Arts Ensemble presents Kile Smith’s ‘Canticle’
Composer and longtime BSR contributor Kile Smith demonstrates his mastery of choral music in a new recording, ‘Canticle,’ now available on CD or for download. Peter Burwasser reviews.
Navona Records presents Clipper Erickson’s ‘Tableau, Tempest and Tango’
An intrepid piano
In his new album, pianist Clipper Erickson plays theatrical new music with Philly connections, plus a freshly rendered musical chestnut. Peter Burwasser reviews.
Annenberg Center Live presents T.S. Monk
The legend lives on
T.S. Monk led a sextet of jazz virtuosos in a loving tribute to his father, jazz legend Thelonious Monk. Peter Burwassser reviews.
FringeArts and Ars Nova present 'The October Revolution of Jazz and Contemporary Music'
Vive la révolution
A new four-day festival of jazz and contemporary music featured 18 acts and a multifaceted view of new music. Peter Burwasser reviews.
'Jeremy Gill: Before the Wresting Tides,' by Boston Modern Orchestra Project and Gil Rose
A singular voice of many colors
The Boston Modern Orchestra Project's late-2017 recording of longtime Philadelphia (now Boston-based) composer Jeremy Gill's work shouldn't be overlooked. Peter Burwasser reviews.
PRISM Quartet's 'Color Theory, Music for Saxophones, Percussion and Harry Partch Instruments'
Four saxophones, percussion, and the junkyard band
PRISM Quartet joins forces with a plethora of musicians, composers, and highly unusual instruments. Peter Burwasser likes what he hears.
The Penn Museum's 'Black Angels and Secrets: An Extraordinary Evening with the Daedalus Quartet'
Daedalus String Quartet (and friends) present three works by living composers, two designed to interact with the unique acoustics of the Chinese Rotunda at the Penn Museum, and a fresh look at a contemporary classic. Peter Burwasser reviews.
The 2016 Astral National Auditions Winners Concert
Astral winners reach for the stars
Astral’s class of 2016 is showcased in a program introducing six solo performers and one ensemble. Peter Burwasser reviews.
The Philadelphia Orchestra presents Kevin Puts’s The Hours
Keeping time for Virginia Woolf
The Hours, a new opera by Kevin Puts and librettist Greg Pierce, is the latest incarnation of Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway, encompassing love, regret, creativity, mental illness, and the human capacity for forgiveness. Peter Burwasser reviews.