This Week At The Classical Station

Photo: Dale Marie Muller

This Week At The Classical Station

by Rob Kennedy

Sunday, June 14, 2020

This evening’s edition of Wavelengths presents the Jasper String Quartet performing music of Caroline Shaw. We’ll also hear works by Arvo Pärt, Joseph Schwantner, and 20th-century composer Walter Piston.

Wavelengths brings you the best in contemporary classical music every Sunday at 9 p.m. Eastern.

Photo: Walter Piston, from the Associated Music Publishers archives, courtesy G. Schirmer/AMP

This evening on Preview! Franz Welser-Möst leads The Cleveland Orchestra in music of Beethoven, from a series of performances celebrating the orchestra’s recent centennial. Rob Kennedy speaks with British pianist Benjamin Grosvenor about his recording of the Chopin piano concertos. And violinist Maia Cabeza plays Janáček.

Preview! brings you the best in new classical recordings and arts news every Sunday from 6 to 9 p.m. Eastern. Tell your smart speaker to “play The Classical Station.”

Photo: Benjamin Grosvenor/Sophia Wright

This morning Great Sacred Music includes music sung by the Wartburg College Choir, Anonymous 4, and the Choir of All Saints’ Episcopal Church, Beverly Hills. Also on the playlist is choral music by Johann Sebastian Bach, William Byrd, and César Franck.

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

Photo: 1968 Kemper & Son organ in Marienkirche, Lübeck/Innomannin on

On June 14 we observe the birthday of Chinese pianist Lang-Lang (1982-). According to the late Earl Wild, Lang Lang is “the J. Lo of the piano.” A child prodigy who studied at the Curtis Institute in Philadelphia, Lang Lang has appeared on concert stages and other venues worldwide.

Photo: Michael

Saturday, June 13, 2020

On June 13 we observe the birthday of Mexican composer and conductor Carlos Chávez and Austrian composer Anton Eberl. Chávez was director of Orquesta Sinfónica de México at one point in his career. Herr Eberl’s music was apparently good enough that Mozart put his name on some of Eberl’s works and claimed them as his own. When Mozart died, Eberl published a notice which essentially said: “That was really my music.”

Photos: Carlos Chávez/SEMO, Mexico City; Anton Eberl/

Friday, June 12, 2020

Go the last mile with your used vehicle. If your 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 programs you rely on from The Classical Station. Plus, it’s a great opportunity for you to reduce your taxable income when itemizing taxes.

Here’s how it works:

Center for Car Donations 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.

Your gift also comes with a one year subscription to Quarter Notes.


Thursday, June 11, 2020

This evening Bob Chapman presents one of the greatest Russian operas, Mikhail Glinka’s Ruslan and Lyudmila. Glinka was the first Russian composer to gain wide recognition inside his own country, and is often regarded as the father of Russian classical music. A Life for the Tsar was the first of his two great operas, being originally entitled Ivan Susanin. Glinka’s second opera, Ruslan and Lyudmila, is based on one of Alexander Pushkin’s earliest poems. The poet had hardly agreed to prepare a dramatic version of his fairy tale when he was killed in a duel owing to the supposed infidelity of his wife. As a result of Pushkin’s untimely end, Glinka employed the services of no less than five different librettists. The premiere took place in St. Petersburg on November 27, 1842, at the Bolshoi Kamenny Theater.

Don’t know anything about opera? Don’t worry. Bob takes time to explain what we are going to hear. The Thursday Night Opera House is one of those programs where you can close your eyes and imagine the action taking place in some far off land. Gorgeous melodies sung by a cast of superb singers make this a memorable experience.

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

Photo: A scene from the second act of Ruslan and Lyudmila, a Russian opera by Mikhail Glinka, staged by the Bolshoi Theater/David Sholomovich / Давид Шоломович

On June 11 we observe the birthday of German composer Richard Strauss. Bridging the late romantic and early modern periods in classical music, Richard Georg Strauss enjoyed great success as a composer and a conductor. His 1905 opera Salome was so well-received that it enabled Strauss to finance the purchase of a house.

Photos: 1918 Portrait of Strauss by Max Liebermann on; Stamps honoring Richard Strauss in the collection of Jiumn-wen Lin


Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Here at The Classical Station, we believe in developing and sustaining a community of classical music lovers by nurturing, educating, and offering the human side of music. One of the ways we do that is by speaking with performers, conductors, and composers on Preview! every Sunday evening at approximately 7 p.m. Eastern. Now, if you were busy and missed some of our interviews, not to worry. We have them all archived for you.

These musicians are passionate about their art. It’s fascinating to hear them talk about their early years, the influences which shaped their careers, and so much more. Thank you for making these interviews possible.

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

On June 9 we observe the birthdays of German composer Otto Nicolai (1810-1849), Danish composer Carl Nielsen (1865-1931), French composer Albéric Magnard (1865-1914), and Romanian soprano Ileana Cotrubaș (1939-). Carl Otto Ehrenfried Nicolai was one of the founders of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. Leonard Bernstein exposed Nielsen’s symphonies to a wider audience with a recording of his Fifth Symphony in 1962. Monsieur Albéric studied with Vincent D’Indy. Ms. Cotrubaș career spanned the 19602 through the 1980s during which time she was in demand at opera houses around the world.

Photos of Carl Nielsen, Albéric Magnard, and Otto Nicolai are in the Public Domain on; Ms. Cotrubaș on

Monday, June 8, 2020

This evening Monday Night At The Symphony shines the spotlight on the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. On the program is music of Sir Edward Elgar, Samuel Coleridge-Taylor and Clara Schumann in performances led by Grant Llewellyn, Holly Mathieson, and current chief conductor Vasily Petrenko. The concert begins at 8 p.m. Eastern.


This evening the June edition of Renaissance Fare offers interesting biographical facts about composers during the renaissance period. We know a lot about Bach, Mozart and Beethoven. But what about John Dowland, Thomas Morley and Michael Praetorius? Listen and learn! Join George Douglas for Renaissance Fare at 7:00 p.m. Eastern.


On June 8 we observe the birthdays of Italian composer Tomaso Albinoni (1671-1751), German composer Robert Schumann (1810-1856), and Polish-born American pianist Emmanuel Ax (1949-). In his day, Albinoni wrote operas, very few of which have survived. Robert and Clara Schumann were friends of Johannes Brahms. Ax is a champion of the works of contemporary composers.