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October 18, 2012

A memento of Lotte Lenya on eve of Baltimore Lieder Weekend's Weill concert

Thursday happens to be Lotte Lenya's birthday (1898-1981), and that reminds me that the annual Baltimore Lieder Weekend at An die Musik has a cabaret theme this year, starting Friday night with a program featuring works by Kurt Weill -- Lenya's husband.

There will be cabaret songs by Schoenberg, Poulenc, Satie and others over the course of the Lieder Weekend, which features soprano Samantha Malk, baritone Ryan de Ryke and pianist Daniel Schlosberg. Sounds like a great match-up of colorful repertoire and artists.

Back to Lenya. To honor her birthday, and get you in the mood for Friday's Weill night, here's ...

a clip of her singing "Pirate Jenny" from Weill's "Three-Penny Opera." What a mesmerizing presence Lenya was, even if her voice could be, well, you know.

Posted by Tim Smith at 10:58 AM | | Comments (0)
Categories: Clef Notes

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About Tim Smith
Born and raised in Washington, D.C., I couldn't help but develop a keen interest in politics, but music, theater and visual art also proved great attractions. Music became my main focus after high school. I thought about being a cocktail pianist, but I hated taking requests, so I studied music history instead, earning a B.A. in that field from Eisenhower College (Seneca Falls, N.Y.) and an M.A. from Occidental College (Los Angeles). I then landed in journalism. After freelancing for the Washington Post and others, I was classical music critic for the Sun-Sentinel in South Florida, where I also contributed to NPR. I've written for the New York Times, BBC Music Magazine and other publications, and I'm a longtime contributor to Opera News. My book, The NPR Curious Listener's Guide to Classical Music (Perigee, 2002), can be found on the most discerning remainder racks.

I joined the Baltimore Sun as classical music critic in 2000 and, in 2009, also became theater critic, giving me the opportunity to annoy a whole new audience. In 2010, my original Clef Notes blog expanded to encompass a theatrical component -- how could I resist calling it Drama Queens? I hope you'll find both sides of this blog coin worth exploring and reacting to; your own comments are always welcome and valued (well, most of them, at least).

Think of this as your open-all-hours, cyber green room, where there's always a performer or performance to discuss, some news to digest, or maybe just a little good gossip to share.
Note: Tim Smith now writes about the fine arts at This blog will be kept in place as an archive for an indefinite period. Please visit the new location to get the latest Mid-Atlantic arts coverage.
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