This Week At The Classical Station

Photo: Dale Marie Muller, Roberts, Montana

This Week At The Classical Station

by Rob Kennedy

Sunday, April 18, 2021

On Wavelengths this evening we’ll hear the music of Chris Brubeck. Nadine Sierra sings a work by Ricky Ian Gordon, and the London Symphony Orchestra plays music of Libby Larsen.

Wavelengths brings you the best in contemporary classical music, Sundays at 9 p.m. Eastern.

This evening on Preview!, Martha Argerich and Theodosia Ntokou play music of Beethoven on two pianos. Rob Kennedy speaks with Scott Metcalfe of the Boston ensemble, Blue Heron, about their release A 14th-Century Salmagundi. And Alina Ibragimova plays Paganini for solo violin.

Preview!, the best in new classical recordings and arts news, every Sunday at 6 p.m. Eastern.

Photo: Courtesy of Blue Heron

The April edition of Renaissance Fare has as its theme April love and April Fools and we’ll have music for both. The program features the London Consort, the Baltimore Consort, and John Rutter with the Cambridge Singers. We’ll also introduce two unique albums of 15th-century music from the Czech region.  Bring your tabret and join George Douglas for Renaissance Fare at 5 p.m. Eastern.

Photo: From a drawing in Cassell’s Library of English Literature, Henry Morley, 1883

This morning Great Sacred Music includes music sung by the Choir of St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, Houston, Texas, The Saint Tikhon Choir, and Parthenia XVI. Also on the playlist is music by Johann Sebastian Bach, Felix Mendelssohn, and Maurice Ravel.

Great Sacred Music. Beautiful choral and organ music. Every Sunday morning. 8 a.m. eastern. Right after Sing For Joy. With Rob Kennedy.

Photo: Chagall Window in Chichester Cathedral, Rob Farrow, Geograph

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

Saturday, April 17, 2021

The 2020-21 Metropolitan Opera Radio Broadcast season continues with Leos Janáček’s profoundly moving opera From the House of the Dead, based on the novel by Dostoevsky set in a Siberian prison camp. This encore broadcast from 2009 starred an extraordinary ensemble cast as the community of damaged but irrepressible inmates. Baritone Peter Mattei gave an acclaimed performance as the tormented Shishkov, with other riveting portrayals by tenors Kurt Streit, Stefan Margita, Eric Stoklossa, and bass-baritone Willard White, who sang the noble political prisoner Gorianchikov. Esa-Pekka Salonen conducted the Met Orchestra and Chorus in Janáček’s remarkable score – a distillation of unflinching drama and vivid humanity.

The curtain goes up at 1:00 p.m. Eastern.

Photo: Metropolitan/Jonathan Tichler

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. 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

Friday, April 16, 2021

If your vehicle – automobile, truck, boat, motorcycle, RV, or aircraft – is no longer of use to you, it can still go a long way as a donation in support of the beautiful music you love here on The Classical Station. Here’s how it works: Center for Car Donations (CFCD), manages the donations on our behalf. Call them toll-free at 1-877-927-3872 for more information and to begin the car donation process. Don’t forget to mention that The Classical Station is the recipient of your donation.

A CFCD representative will schedule a pickup that’s convenient for you, and provide you with confirmation of your donation. We will mail you a confirmation that states how much your vehicle sold for at auction. This amount is what you can claim on your itemized tax return. You also will receive a one-year subscription to Quarter Notes.

Photo: 1974 Ford Pinto, Pat M., Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

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

Thursday, April 15, 2021

From the archives of the late Al Ruocchio, we present Georges’ Bizet’s Les Pecheurs on The Thursday Night Opera House. The storyline: The friendship of Ceylonese fishermen Nadir
and Zurga is threatened by the reappearance in their lives of the priestess Leïla.

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

On April 15 we observe the 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

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

Have you discovered our Conversations With Composers? It’s fascinating listening to composers like Dan Locklair and Jennifer Higdon talking about their craft. These musicians love what they do and are most eager to share their art with everybody. Let your family and friends know about these conversations which they can listen to or download anytime. You can also enjoy these conversations on our apps. Oh, and we also have conversations with instrumentalists, singers and conductors. Enjoy!

On April 14 we observe the birthdays of Finnish conductor Paavo Berglund, English cellist Julian Lloyd Webber, Russian conductor and pianist Mikhail Pletnev, and American cellist Alisa Weilerstein.

Maestro Berglund was renowned for his interpretations of Jean Sibelius’ symphonies. Julian Lloyd Webber had a distinguished career as a cellist. Maestro Pletnev is the Founder and Artistic Director of the Russian National Orchestra. Alisa Weilerstein was named a MacArthur Fellow in 2011.

Photo: Paavo Berglund, Unknown Author, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons; Julian Lloyd-Webber, Unknown Author on; Mikhail Pletnev, Unknown Author, on Zeneakadémiáig; Alisa Weilerstein, Harald Hoffmann/Decca

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Celebrate the special classical music lover in your life with a daily, weekly, or monthly announcement here on The Classical Station. With a Sustaining Membership of $100 per month, you can have a weekly on-air dedication. To find out more about day dedications and patron announcements on The Classical Station or to renew your announcement, contact Dan McHugh at 919-556-5178.

On April 13 we observe the birthdays of English composer William Sterndale Bennett (1816-1875) and American duo-pianists John and Richard Contiguglia (1937-).

William Sterndale Bennett studied in Leipzig where his compositions were admired by Feliz Mendelssohn and Robert Schumann. The Contiguglia twins are both graduates of Yale University.

Photos: William Sterndale Bennett (painted by John Everett Millais), Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons; John & Richard Contiguglia, Unknown Author, /

Monday, April 12, 2021

This evening Monday Night at the Symphony features the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.  On the program is music of Giuseppe Verdi, Peter Tchaikovsky, and  Franz Liszt, in performances led by Claudio Abbado, Sir Georg Solti, and music director Riccardo Muti.

The concert begins at 8 p.m. Eastern.

Photo: Chicago Symphony


The April edition of Renaissance Fare has as its theme April love and April Fools and we’ll have music for both. The program features the London Consort, the Baltimore Consort, and John Rutter with the Cambridge Singers. We’ll also introduce two unique albums of 15th-century music from the Czech region.  Bring your tabret and join George Douglas for Renaissance Fare at 7 p.m. Eastern.

Photo: From a drawing in Cassell’s Library of English Literature, Henry Morley, 1883

On April 12 we observe the birthdays of Austrian composer Josef Lanner (1801-1843), French conductor Jean-François Paillard (1928-2013), and Spanish soprano Montserrat Caballé (1933-2018).

Herr Lanner wrote dance music for the nobility of his day. Monsieur Paillard will be remembered for his expertise in interpreting Baroque music, and especially for his recording of Johann Pachelbel’s Canon in D which catapulted that work to the top of lists of listener favorites everywhere. María de Montserrat Bibiana Concepción Caballé i Folch was one of the great bel canto opera singers of the 20th-century.

Photo: Montserrat Caballe, Unknown Author, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons