This Week At The Classical Station

Photo: “Clouds” by Sherry Conrad Frye. From The Classical Station’s Virtual Art Exhibit.

This Week At The Classical Station

by Rob Kennedy

Sunday, April 25, 2021

This evening on Wavelengths we’ll hear American composer William Susman’s music for a silent film shot in New York before, during and after the events of 9/11.Third Coast Percussion performs works by Sergio and Clarice Assad, and pianist Joyce Yang plays the music of Michael Torke.

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

This evening on Preview!, conductor Francois-Xavier Roth leads the ensemble Les Siecles in music of Beethoven. Elizabeth Elliott speaks with guitarist Milos about his new release, the Moon and the Forest. And Trio Wanderer plays music of Schumann.

Preview! brings you the best in new classical recordings and arts news, Sundays at 6 p.m. Eastern.

This morning Great Sacred Music includes music sung by the Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles, the Compline Choir of Saint Mark’s Cathedral, Seattle, and the Holst Singers. Also on the playlist is music by Johann Sebastian Bach, Michel Corrette, and George Frederic Handel.

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

Saturday, April 24, 2021

We’re enjoying a Back To The Baroque Weekend. The musical baroque (1600–1750) was an era of exploration, with music written to glorify God while pushing the boundaries of harmonic invention and human virtuosity. We’ll feature the giants of this fascinating period—Bach, Handel and Vivaldi—along with the contributions of Telemann, Albinoni and Purcell, Buxtehude, the Scarlatti family, and more.

The 2020-21 Metropolitan Opera Radio Broadcast season continues with Die Frau ohne Schatten – The Woman Without a Shadow, Richard Strauss’s epic fairy tale that grapples with the essence of being human. This encore broadcast from 2013 features American soprano Christine Goerke whose breakthrough performance as the Dyer’s Wife established her as a leading dramatic soprano. German soprano Anne Schwanewilms starred in the title role as the otherworldly Empress who must decide whether to sacrifice someone else’s happiness to achieve her own. Hungarian mezzo-soprano Ildikó Komlósi was the Empress’s scheming Nurse, Danish bass-baritone Johan Reuter sang Barak, the humble Dyer, and German tenor Torsten Kerl was the Emperor. Vladimir Jurowski conducted the Met Orchestra in Strauss’s mesmerizing score.

The curtain goes up at 1 p.m. Eastern. Tell your smart speaker to “Play The Classical Station.”

Photo: Metropolitan Opera House by Jonathan Tichler

On April 24 we observe the birthday of Australian guitarist John Williams (1941-). Winner of a GRAMMY Award with another prominent guitarist, Julian Bream, John Williams is widely considered to be one of the finest guitar players of his generation.


Friday, April 23, 2021

The Metropolitan Opera presents
Richard Strauss’ Die Frau ohne Schatten – The Woman Without a Shadow
Saturday, April 24, 1 p.m. Eastern

On April 23 we observe the birthday of Italian composer Ruggero Leoncavallo (1857-1919). Although he composed 10 operas and 9 operettas, Signor Leoncavallo is best known to modern audiences for his opera Pagliacci.

Photo: Unknown Author, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

Thursday, April 22, 2021

This evening the Thursday Night Opera House presents Sigmund Romberg’s The Student Prince and Meredith Willson’s The Music Man. Prince Karl Franz is tutored by Dr. Engel while living incognito in Heidelberg but falls in love with Kathie the waitress. Professor Harold Hill falls in love with Marian the librarian while creating the River City Boys’ Band.

The curtain goes up at 7 p.m. Eastern. Bob Chapman hosts.

On April 22 we observe the birthdays of Italian composer Giuseppe Torelli (1658-1709), English composer Ethel Smyth (1858-1944), English contralto Kathleen Ferrier (1912-1953), American-born violinist and conductor Yehudi Menuhin (1916-1999), Finnish conductor Jukka-Pekka Saraste (1956-).

Although an accomplished violist and violinist, Signor Torelli is probably best remembered for his virtuoso trumpet concerti. A member of the women’s suffrage movement, Dame Ethel Smyth composed in a variety of genres. With an extensive repertoire from folk songs to opera, Kathleen Ferrier was one of the great singers of the 20th-century. Yehudi Menuhin was widely considered one of the greatest violinists of the 20th-century. Maestro Saraste has served as the conductor of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, the BBC Symphony Orchestra and the Oslo Philharmonic, among others.

Photos: Giuseppe Torelli, Unknown Author, Public Domain Art, Wikimedia Commons; Ethel Smyth, Unknown Author, Restoration by Adam Cuerden, George Grantham Bain collection at the Library of Congress, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons; Kathleen Ferrier, Unknown Author,; Yehudi Menuhin, Unknown Author, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons; Jukka-Pejja Saraste, Raimond Spekking, CC BY-SA 4.0, Wikimedia Commons

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

What would you like us to play for you? We have two Request Programs. All Request Friday and the Saturday Evening Request Program. On All Request Friday we play the music you choose from 9 a.m. until 10 p.m. Eastern. The Saturday Evening Request Program runs from 6 p.m. until midnight. We have a couple of ways for you to submit your requests. On our website, click Listen then Request Programs, then fill out the short form to let us know what you want us to play. Or click the Request Programs link on our app. Or call 919-556-0123. Short works? Yes. Long works? Yes. Your choice! The programs are usually over-subscribed, so get your request in as soon as you can.

Want to know when your request will be played?  Check Request Program Playlists. under the Listen tab here on our website.

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

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Have you discovered our Conversations With Conductors? In these conversations with Rob Kennedy, distinguished musicians such as JoAnn Falletta, Karina Canellakis, Sir Stephen Cleobury, Nicholas McGegan, and many more, talk about their early years and education, their art, and much more. 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 app.

Photo: JoAnn Falletta, ©Cheryl Gorski 

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

Monday, April 19, 2021

This evening Monday Night at the Symphony features The Academy of St Martin in the Fields. On the program is music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Johannes Brahms, and Johann Sebastian Bach in performances led by Sir Neville Marriner, Iona Brown, Joshua Bell, and Murray Perahia.

The concert begins at 8 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