Highlights in classical music during January include a visit by the acclaimed cappella group Anonymous Four at the Gardner Museum’s new concert hall, and the Boston Modern Orchestra Project performing “Strange Bedfellows: Unlikely Concertos.”
Director Steve McQueen’s skillful exploration of troubled human behavior and his use of New York as a psychological landscape make “Shame” off-putting to watch, while at the same time it draws us in. We have no moral compass beyond our own attitudes to ambiguous contemporary sexual mores.
The places where Pieter Saenredam worked were never the same after he committed them to paper and paint. His single known painting of a building in Amsterdam -– of the old town hall –- became iconic during the life of the artist.
As the year nears its end, time is running out to write at length about some of the new books that gave me pleasure. Thus this quick list of favorites. As usual, my taste runs to prose that’s off-the-beaten-path.