This Week At The Classical Station

Photo: “Coastline Pt. Reyes” by Ari Ferro. Inspired by Claude Debussy’s La Mer
From our Virtual Art Exhibit

This Week At The Classical Station

by Rob Kennedy

Sunday, March 5, 2023

Brazilian guitarist Plinio Fernandes opens Preview! this evening with his recording of Heitor Villa-Lobos’ Five Preludes. Rachel Barton Pine talks about the re-release of her 1997 recording featuring Violin Concertos by Black Composers of the 18th and 19th Centuries.

Preview! brings you new releases and local arts news every Sunday at 6 p.m. Eastern.

This morning Great Sacred Music includes music sung by the Choir of Liverpool Cathedral, the Sixteen, and the William Ferris Chorale. Also on the playlist is music by Johann Sebastian Bach, Camille Saint-Saens, and Sir George Dyson.

Great Sacred Music. Beautiful choral and organ music. Every Sunday morning. 8 a.m. Eastern.

On March 5 we observe the birthdays of American composer Arthur Foote (1853-1937), Brazilian composer Heitor Villa-Lobos (1887-1959), Australian French horn player Barry Tuckwell (1931-2020), and English conductor Richard Hickox (1948-2008).

Arthur Foote was a prominent early 20th-century composer who was a member of the Boston Six. That informal group consisted of Foote and George Whitefield Chadwick, Amy Beach, Edward MacDowell, John Knowles Paine, and Horatio Parker. Heitor Villa-Lobos is synonymous with creativity in 20th-century Brazilian music. Barry Tuckwell had a well-earned reputation as one of the finest French horn players of the 20th century. Richard Hickox was a brilliant, multifaceted conductor whose life was cut short at the young age of 60.

Photos: Photo of Arthur Foote, Unknown Author, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons; Photo of Heitor Villa-Lobos, Unknown Author, Biblioteca Nacional do Brasil, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons;  Photo of Barry Tuckwell, JzG, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons; Photo of Richard Hickox, Unknown Author, the use of this image may qualify as fair use under the Copyright law of the United States, Wikimedia Commons.

Saturday, March 4, 2023

A great piece of music is a journey worth taking. It takes you to a place you know or one that you want to get to know better. A great piece of classical music lives. It breathes. It paints a picture of life in ways that no other genre can. That’s why we are dedicated to sharing the magic of this music near and far with anyone who wants to experience it. But it’s only possible with your support.  Keep the music alive here on your home for classical music,  The Classical Station.

Do your part for the music that matters. Give securely online, via our app, or by calling 800-556-5178 anytime. Thank you for your support!

On March 4 we observe the birthdays of Italian composer Antonio Vivaldi (1678-1741), Dutch conductor Bernard Haitink (1929-1921), and American composer Samuel Adler (1928-).

Best known to modern audiences for The Four Seasons and his concerti for various instruments, Padre Vivaldi also composed forty operas and many sacred works. Bernard Johan Herman Haitink was the chief conductor or music director of the London Philharmonic Orchestra (1967-1979), Glyndebourne Opera (1978-1988), The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden (1987-2002), Staatskapelle Dresden (2002-2004), and the Boston Symphony Orchestra (1995-2004). Dr. Adler taught at the Eastman School of Music from 1966 to 1995, and was chair of the composition department from 1974 until his retirement. He’s written over 400 compositions. Happy 95th birthday!

Photos: Portrait of Antonio Vivaldi, Unknown Author, Museo Internazionale e Biblioteca della Musica di Bologna, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons; Photo of Bernard Haitink, Anefo/Croes, R.C., Dutch National Archives, The Hague, Fotocollectie Algemeen Nederlands Persbureau, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons; Dt. Adler courtesy of his website.

Friday, March 3, 2023

The Metropolitan Opera presents
Gaetano Donizetti’s La Favorita, Saturday, March 4, 1 p.m. Eastern

Our Spring 2023 Membership Drive will begin in a few weeks. The point of our membership drives is to encourage listeners to become supporting members of The Classical Station. Did you know that Angels help us achieve that objective? Well, yes, they do and have done so for many years. Our Angels are amazing listeners who will match your gift to encourage you to support this unique classical music radio station that you enjoy so much.

The way it works is very simple. For example, a listener in Virginia commits $600 to the membership drive. She tells us that she will match 5 contributions of $10 per month. So, once her angel match is met and 5 new members have become Sustaining Members at $10 per month, The Classical Station garners $600 from our Angel and another $600 from the 5 listeners who have become Sustaining Members at the $10 per month level.

Can you be an Angel during our Spring 2023 Membership Drive? Here’s how to make that happen: call Tanja Greaves here at the station and let her know that you want to be an Angel with your gift of $300 or more. You can reach Tanja at 800-556-5178 or email her.

If you prefer, you can become an Angel by making your gift of $300 or more online via our secure server. Just be sure to mention that you want to be an Angel in the Comments box. Or pop a check in the mail to WCPE The Classical Station, P.O. Box 828, Wake Forest, NC 27588. Thank you for inspiring other listeners to support The Classical Station. Don’t hesitate to call if you have questions.

Photo: Unknown Author, Angels Angelology


Thursday, March 2, 2023

This evening the Thursday Night Opera House presents English composer Dame Ethel Smyth’s The Wreckers. In 1906, Ethel Smyth was the first woman to have her works performed at The
Metropolitan Opera. Influenced by the works of Wagner and Berlioz, her music is grand and robust. The Wreckers is a tragic tale of love, deception, and sorcery.

The curtain goes up at 7 p.m. Eastern.

Photo: Dame Ethel Smyth, Fair use, Bain Collection. Library of Congress Prints & Photographs Division.

On March 2 we observe the birthdays of Czech composer Bedřich Smetana (1824-1884), German-born American composer Kurt Weill (1900-1950), and Spanish guitarist Celedonio Romero (1913-1996).

Bedřich Smetana is widely considered to be the father of Czech music. A prolific composer, Smetana wrote operas, some chamber music, and works for piano and orchestra. Herr Weill is best known for his ballad Mack the Knife from his The Three Penny Opera. Señor Romero was part of the famous guitar quartet The Romeros. He taught guitarist Christopher Parkening.

Photos: Photo of a portrait of Bedřich Smetana, Unknown Author, Public Domain on Wikimedia Commons; Photo of Kurt Weill, Unknown Author, Kurt Weill Foundation, qualifies as fair use under United States copyright law; Photo of Celedonio Romera, Unknown Author, Musicalics, qualifies as fair use under United States copyright law

Wednesday, March 1, 2023

During the month of March, we honor women’s contributions to American history. Here at The Classical Station, we also honor women composers, performers, and conductors for their contributions to classical music. We have an extensive collection of conversations with distinguished musicians for you to enjoy. You can find them on our Conversations page. Here’s a sampling of the artists who await you there. Click the link below each photo to hear our conversation with that musician.

Photos: Angèle Dubeau courtesy Analekta; Karina Canellakis by Mathias Bothor; Jennifer Higdon by J. Henry Fair; Yolanda Kondonassis by Laura Watilo Blake; Jeanette Sorrell by Roger Mastrioanni

On March 1 we observe the birthdays of Polish composer Frédéric Chopin (1810-1849), Greek conductor Dimitri Mitropoulos (1896-1960), and American mezzo-soprano Lorraine Hunt Lieberson (1954-2006).

A child prodigy, Fryderyk Franciszek Chopin composed over 200 works, mainly for the piano. Maestro Mitropoulos was the principal conductor of several American orchestras including the Boston Symphony, the New York Philharmonic, and the Minneapolis Symphony (forerunner of the Minnesota Orchestra.) In addition, he was the principal conductor of the Metropolitan Opera from 1954-1960. Ms. Lieberson began her musical career as a violist before becoming a singer in her thirties.

Photos: Watercolor portrait of Polish composer Frederic Chopin by Maria Wodzinska (1819-96), Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons; Photo of Dmitri Mitropoulos, Unknown Author, qualifies as fair use under United States copyright law; Photo of Lorraine Hunt Lieberson, Unknown Author, qualifies as fair use under United States copyright law

Monday, February 27, 2023

This evening, Monday Night at the Symphony features the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, which was founded in 1934. The program includes music by Marcel Tyberg, Karol Szymanowski, Josef Haydn, and more, conducted by Music Director JoAnn Falletta. Marcel Tyberg’s music was rediscovered in large part thanks to Maestra Falletta.

Tell your smart device to “Play The Classical Station” at 8 p.m. Eastern.

On February 27 we observe the birthdays of English composer Sir Hubert Parry (1848-1918), American contralto Marian Anderson (1897-1993), Italian soprano Mirella Freni (1935-2020), and Latvian violinist Gidon Kremer (1947-).

Sir Charles Hubert Hastings Parry is best known these days as the composer of the 1902 coronation anthem I was glad. One of the most celebrated singers of the 20th century, Ms. Anderson made history on April 9, 1939, when she sang before a crowd of 75,000 at the National Mall. Signora Freni performed on most of the world’s great opera stages during her long career. A student of David Oistrakh, Gidon Kremer has performed with many of the world’s top orchestras.

Photos: Photo of Sir Hubert Parry, Unknown Author, The Musical Quarterly, July 1919, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons; Photo of Marian Anderson by Carl Van Vechten, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons; Photo of Mirella Freni, Unknown Author, NPR; Photo of Gidon Kremer, Kasskara, ECM Records.