This Week at The Classical Station

Photo: Dale Marie Muller, Roberts, Montana

This Week at The Classical Station

by Rob Kennedy

Sunday, September 10, 2023

This morning’s Great Sacred Music includes performances by the Bach Choir of Bethlehem; the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Chorus; and the Oxford Camerata. You’ll hear works by Johann Sebastian Bach, Francis Poulenc, Orlando Gibbons, and many more.

Great Sacred Music. 8 a.m. Right after Sing for Joy. With host Mick Anderson.

On September 10 we observe the birthdays of English composer Henry Purcell (1659-1695), Swedish composer Tor Aulin (1866-1914), and English early music specialist and conductor Christopher Hogwood (1941-2014).

Purcell wrote mainly theater music and operas until 1679 when he was appointed Organist of Westminster Abbey. In that role, he composed over 200 anthems, service settings, hymns, and sacred songs. Aulin conducted Sweden’s Stockholm and Gothenburg symphony orchestras in his lifetime. Maestro Hogwood’s obituary in The Guardian refers to him as “the Karajan of early music.” Hogwood paved the way for musicians such as Roger Norrington, John Eliot Gardiner, and Trevor Pinnock.

Photo: Henry Purcell, John Closterman, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

Saturday, September 9, 2023

The Classical Station is the world’s 24-hour source for Great Classical Music. With its history of more than 40 years of broadcasting classical music, The Classical Station inspires loyalty and support from devoted listeners worldwide. Our weekly adult audience of over 180,000 listeners in Central North Carolina is mature, affluent, and well-educated. They travel, attend concerts and other cultural events, visit art museums and gift shops, buy luxury items, and take educational courses. The Classical Station is a favored public radio station at home, at work, and on the road. Your message will reach key decision-makers that can make a difference in your business. Furthermore, your support for public radio will add stature to your message.

For more information about business underwriting opportunities at The Classical Station, e-mail Mary Moonen or call 919-556-5178.

On September 9 we observe the birthday of Hungarian conductor Ádám Fischer (1949-).

Maestro Fischer is the general music director of the Austro-Hungarian Haydn Orchestra, music director of the Hungarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, and chief conductor of the Danish National Chamber Orchestra.

Photo: Andreas Praefcke, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

Friday, September 8, 2023

On September 8 we observe the birthdays of French composer Nicolas de Grigny (1672-1703), Czech composer Antonín Leopold Dvořák (1841-1904), English composer Peter Maxwell Davies (1934-2016), and German conductor Christoph von Dohnányi (1929-).

Monsieur de Grigny died at the age of 31 and left but a single manuscript of music which represents some of the best French baroque music for the organ. Dvořák moved to America in 1892 to become the director of the National Conservatory of Music of America in New York City. It is here that he composed his famous New World Symphony and the American String Quartet. Peter Maxwell Davies studied under Roger Sessions and Milton Babbitt at Princeton University in 1962. Maestro von Dohnányi conducted the Cleveland Orchestra from 1982-2002. Following his retirement from Cleveland, von Dohnányi has worked with several major American orchestras including the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the New York Philharmonic Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and Philadelphia Orchestra.  Happy 94th birthday, Maestro!

Thursday, September 7, 2023

Synopsis: Fidelio by Ludwig van Beethoven
Ludwig van Beethoven’s “Fidelio” is his only opera, premiered in its final version in 1814. With a libretto by Joseph Sonnleithner, the work is an ode to liberty and the human spirit, set against the backdrop of political imprisonment.

Act I

Drawing of head of a young Beethoven

“Beethoven as a Young Man” by Balazs Szabo

The story unfolds in a state prison managed by the corrupt governor, Don Pizarro. Leonore, the heroine, disguises herself as a man named “Fidelio” to work at the prison, where she believes her husband, Florestan, is being secretly held for his political beliefs. She gains the trust of the jailer, Rocco, and his daughter, Marzelline, who falls in love with “Fidelio,” complicating matters.

Act II
In a dark, isolated cell, Florestan laments his dire condition but dreams of freedom and reunion with Leonore. Meanwhile, Don Pizarro learns of an impending inspection and decides to kill Florestan to cover up his crime. Rocco is reluctantly ordered to dig a grave. Leonore convinces Rocco to let her assist him, hoping to find her husband.

In the cell, as Don Pizarro raises his dagger to kill Florestan, Leonore reveals her true identity and threatens the governor with a pistol. Just then, trumpet calls announce the arrival of the minister, Don Fernando, who frees all the prisoners and praises Leonore for her bravery.

In Summary:

“Fidelio” is more than just an opera; it’s Beethoven’s musical statement on justice, freedom, and the triumph of love over tyranny. Its powerful orchestration and emotional depth make it a monumental work in the operatic repertoire.

You can enjoy Fidelio this evening on the Thursday Night Opera House at 7 p.m.

On September 7 we observe the birthday of French pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet (1961-). Monsieur Thibaudet has over fifty recordings to his credit. His playing can also be heard in several film scores.

Photo: Priska Ketterer/Lucerne Festival

Wednesday, September 6, 2023

Classical music carries a kind of truth. It’s music with a purpose – music that reaches deep into our hearts and souls – music that connects directly with our most profound emotions. Whether it’s Bach or Beethoven, Mozart or Haydn, Chopin or Schubert… classical music lays its heart on the line. In the world of music, there’s nothing that carries that kind of power. But to keep it right here on the radio takes your backing with a donation. Keep this wonderful music alive right now with a heartfelt contribution.

Give securely online or give us a call anytime. 800-556-5178. Don’t forget to select a Thank You Gift!

Photo: Blue Diamond Gallery, Fair Use

On September 6 we observe the birthdays of Spanish composer Juan Bautista José Cabanilles (1644-1712), Russian conductor Yevgeny Svetlanov (1928-2002), and American composer Joan Tower (1938-). Señor Cabanilles was an organist and priest at Valencia Cathedral. Maestro Svetlanov had a plane and an asteroid named after him. Grammy Award-winning composer Joan Tower is arguably one of the most important composers of our time.

Photo: Joan Tower by Cynthia Del Conte

Tuesday, September 5, 2023

Can you be an angel? We need angels for our Fall 2023 Membership Drive which 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 Charlotte, North Carolina, 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 Fall 2023 Membership Drive? Here’s how to make that happen: call us anytime and tell the member of staff who answers that you want to be an Angel with your gift of $300 or more. 800-556-5178.

You can also become an Angel by making your gift of $300 or more online via our secure server. Put “This is an Angel Match!” in the Comments Box. Your Angel Match can be paid as a Sustaining Membership. So, a $300 Angel Match can be spread across 12 months with a monthly payment of $25.

Remember: you can call the station anytime. 24/7. A live member of staff will take your call and help you with your pledge and any questions you have. Thank you for being an Angel and encouraging other listeners to support The Classical Station! Don’t forget to take a Thank You Gift!

Photo: “Angel 013” by Juliett-Foxtrott is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

On September 5 we observe the birthdays of German composer Johann Christian Bach (1735-1782), German composer Giacomo Meyerbeer (1791-1864), American composer Amy Beach (1867-1944), Mexican conductor Eduardo Mata (1942-1995), American composer John Cage (1912-1992), and Canadian pianist Marc-André Hamelin (1961-).

J.C. Bach was the youngest son of Johann Sebastian Bach. He was a prolific composer in many musical forms. Herr Meyerbeer was noted for his operas which made him one of the most successful composers of the nineteenth century. New Hampshire native Amy Beach was one of the Second New England school of composers which included John Knowles Paine, Arthur Foote, George Whitefield Chadwick, Edward MacDowell, and Horatio Parker. Señor Mata died at the age of 53 when the small plane which he was piloting crashed outside Mexico City in 1995. He was the conductor of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra from 1977-1993. John Cage was a composer of avant-garde music. Perhaps his best-known work is his 1952 composition 4’33” (q.v.). Besides being a recitalist, Monsieur Hamelin is also a composer.

Photo: Amy Marcy Cheny Beach, George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress), Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

Monday, September 4, 2023

This evening enjoy a concert by one of our greatest symphony orchestras. Monday Night at the Symphony features The Cleveland Orchestra which was founded in 1918. The program includes music by Ludwig van Beethoven, Antonín Dvorák, and Robert Schumann conducted by George Szell, Christoph Dohnanyi, and current Music Director Franz Welser-Möst.

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

Our guest on the September edition of My Life In Music is Canadian pianist Jan Liseicki. My Life in Music is made possible by our listeners and by The Chamber Orchestra of the Triangle.  28-year-old Jan has played more than 100 recitals over the past year. He talked about the rigors of concertizing in different halls and with different orchestras. Interspersed with the conversation are selections from some of Jan’s recordings. He plays music by Frederic Chopin, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and Felix Mendelssohn for us.

Join Rob Kennedy for My Life In Music this evening at 7 p.m. Eastern.

On September 4 we observe the birthdays of German composer Friedrich Ludwig Æmilius Kunzen (1761-1817), Austrian composer Anton Bruckner (1824-1896), and French composer Darius Milhaud (1892-1974).

Herr Kunzen worked as an opera conductor and was a champion of Mozart’s operas. Anton Bruckner composed over 150 works. While his large-scale symphonies are perhaps his best-known music, his training as an organist afforded him the opportunity to write dozens of very fine choral works. Monsieur Milhaud was one of Les Six, a group of French composers consisting of Georges Auric, Louis Durey, Arthur Honegger, Darius Milhaud, Francis Poulenc, and Germaine Tailleferre. He taught at Mills College in California as well as at the Paris Conservatoire.

Photo: Anton Bruckner, Unknown Author, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons