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Performance notes

Much of our national musical life takes place in church—yet most music critics simply ignore it. Plus, what on earth did they do to Carmen?

By Martin Kettle   December 2007

The Messiah is coming

Most of the time, our music writers spend their time discussing what they see and hear in our concert halls and opera houses and listening to what emerges from the recording studio. There’s nothing wrong with that, and no picture of our musical life would be complete without proper attention to these places.

But the picture thus painted is not the full one. In fact, it is in some ways extremely misleading, because most of these music writers pay almost no attention to performances in the arenas in which arguably the majority of our national…

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