This Week at The Classical Station

Photo: “The Dance of the Flowers” by Loretta Del Palazzo from Our Virtual Art Exhibit

This Week at The Classical Station

by Rob Kennedy

Sunday, April 21, 2024

This evening, Preview! opens with a performance of Dmitri Shostakovich’s Festive Overture, Op. 96, performed by the Philharmonic Brass. Pianist Daniel Gortler talks about his recording of the Lyric Pieces of Edvard Grieg

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

This morning, Great Sacred Music includes performances by The Tallis Scholars, The Michael May Festival Chorus, and organist Richard Marlow. You’ll hear works by Johannes Brahms, Josquin de Prez, Antonio Vivaldi, and many more. Our featured work is Grand Mass in E flat by Amy Beach.

Great Sacred Music. Sundays. It begins at 8 a.m. Right after Sing for Joy. With Mick Anderson.

On April 21 we observe the birthdays of American composer Randall Thompson (1899-1984) and Australian violinist Stanley Ritchie (1935-). Alleluia and Randall Thompson became associated with each other back in 1940. Stanely Ritchie is currently the Distinguished Professor of Music (Violin, Early Music) at the Jacobs School of Music, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana.

Photos: Stanley Ritchie, Jacobs School of Music, Indiana University; Randall Thompson, Unknown Author, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons


Saturday, April 20, 2024

The Metropolitan Opera’s 2023-24 season of Saturday matinée radio broadcasts continues with La Rondine, Puccini’s bittersweet opera about love in all its guises. Soprano Angel Blue stars as the courtesan Magda, who has a beautiful dream of love – but one that proves elusive. Tenor Jonathan Tetelman makes his network broadcast debut as Ruggero, a newcomer to Paris who falls in love with her. And another pair of Met debutantes, soprano Emily Pogorelc and tenor Bekhzod Davronov, are the pragmatic couple Lisette and Prunier. Speranza Scappucci conducts this lesser-known gem by Puccini, a captivating romance colored with a tinge of heartbreak.

The performance begins at 1 p.m. Eastern. Tell your smart speaker to “Play The Classical Station.”

On April 20 we observe the birthday of English conductor Sir John Eliot Gardiner (1943-).

Sir John is highly regarded for his interpretation and performances of Baroque music. His Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists recorded all of the extant Bach cantatas, among other projects.

Photo: ©Maciej Goździelewski, Cc-by-sa-3.0, GFDL, Wikimedia Commons


Friday, April 19, 2024

The Metropolitan Opera presents
Giacomo Puccini’s La Rondine
Saturday, April 20, 1 p.m. Eastern

On April 19 we observe the birthdays of French composer Germaine Tailleferre (1892-1983), French conductor and violinist Yan Pascal Tortelier (1947-), and American pianist Murray Perahia (1947-).

Over the course of her long life, Germaine Tailleferre wrote a variety of compositions including television and film scores. Son of cellist Paul Tortelier, Monsieur Tortelier records for the Chandos label. A native of New York, Murray Perahia is considered one of the great pianists of the late 20th and 21st centuries.

Photos: Germaine Tailleferre, Unknown Author, BBC; Yan Pascal Tortelier, IMG Artists; Murray Perahia, Nigel Luckhurst


Thursday, April 18, 2024

Education FundThe Classical Station’s 2024 Education Fund Grant Application Process is now open! The deadline for applications is Tuesday, April 30, 2024. Last year, grants totalling $16,500 were awarded to seven outstanding organizations dedicated to providing classical music education to children in our community. The Classical Station’s Education Fund plays a vital role in supporting and enriching classical music education initiatives throughout our region. These grants are awarded to organizations that provide music lessons, scholarships, and instruments to deserving children who may otherwise not have access to these resources.

You can allocate 10% of your gift of any amount over $50 to the Education Fund. Thank you for your support.

This evening, the Thursday Evening Opera House presents Douglas Moore and John Latouche’s The Ballad of Baby Doe. A truly American opera, based on a true story and set in Leadville, Colorado. The young Elizabeth (Baby) Doe has left her husband and moves to Leadville. She meets and falls in love with Horace Tabor, a politician and investor in silver. However, Horace Tabor is married to Augusta Tabor. It is quite the scandal for the day. Our performance features the New York City Opera Orchestra and Chorus conducted by Emerson Buckley.

The curtain goes up at 7 p.m. Tell your smart speaker to “Play The Classical Station.”

On April 18 we observe the birthdays of Austrian composer Franz von Suppé (1819-1895), British conductor Leopold Stokowski (1882-1977), and French organist Jean Guillou (1930-2019).

Christened Francesco Ezechiele Ermenegildo Cavaliere di Suppé-Demelli, Herr von Suppé is known to modern audiences for his operettas and their rousing overtures. Maestro Stokowski was one of the 20th-century’s greatest conductors. He began his musical career as an organist and went on to be Music Director of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the NBC Symphony Orchestra, New York Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra, and the Houston Symphony Orchestra, among others. Monsieur Guillou was Titular Organist of Eglise St. Eustache in Paris for 52 years.

Photos: Franz von Suppé, Fritz Luckhardt, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons; Leopold Stokowski, Unknown Author, Library of Congress, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons; Jean Guillou, G. Garitan, CC BY-SA 3.0, Wikimedia Commons


Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Do you have a favorite piece of Mozart or Brahms? We’d love to play it for you on one of our popular request programs. Submit your request for All Request Friday or the Saturday Evening Request Program on our app or on our website.

All Request Friday runs from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m. Eastern. The Saturday Evening Request Program airs from 6 p.m. Eastern until midnight with your host, Dr. Haydn Jones.

Today we observe the birthdays of Austrian pianist Artur Schnabel (1882-1951), Russian-born American cellist Gregor Piatigorsky (1903-1976), American composer Adolphus Hailstork (1941-), and Brazilian pianist Cristina Ortiz (1950-).

Herr Schnabel was the first pianist to record all thirty-two of Beethoven’s sonatas. Gregor Piatigorsky was championed by great musicians such as Wilhelm Furtwangler and Richard Strauss. Fulbright scholar Adolphus Hailstork is Professor of Music and Composer-in-Residence at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia. You can listen to Dr. Hailstork talking about his life and work as a composer here. A first-prize winner of the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, Ms. Ortiz has performed extensively with orchestras worldwide.

Photos: Artur Schnabel, Unknown Author, CC BY-SA 3.0, Wikimedia Commons; Gregor Piatigorsky, Unknown Author, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons; Adolphus Hailstork, Rose Grace; Cristina Ortiz, G. Staffeti


Tuesday, April 16, 2024

On April 16 we observe the birthdays of Catalan composer Federico Mompou (1893-1987) and American conductor Denis Russell Davies (1944-). After attending the Paris Conservatoire, Federico Mompou spent his life composing music mainly for solo piano. A Julliard graduate, Dr. Davies has conducted many of the world’s orchestras. He is noted for his advocacy of contemporary music.

Photo: Dennis Russell Davies, Benno Hunziker, CC-BY-SA-3.0, Wikimedia Commons


Monday, April 15, 2024

This evening, Monday Night at the Symphony features the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, which was founded in 1916. The program includes music by Sergei Rachmaninoff, Hector Berlioz, Edward Elgar and more conducted by David Zinman, Sergiu Comissiona, and Music Director Laureate, Marin Alsop.

The concert begins at 8 p.m. Eastern.

On April 15 we observe the 100th birthday of English conductor Sir Neville Marriner (1924-2016). One of the greatest conductors of our time, Sir Neville founded the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields in 1958. He recorded extensively with that ensemble.

Photo: Richard Holt