This Week At The Classical Station

Photo: Ian B. Kennedy, Venice, Florida

This Week At The Classical Station

by Rob Kennedy

Sunday, July 11, 2021

This evening Wavelengths features music of American composer Kim Portnoy, inspired by a colorful TV chef. We’ll also hear works by Missy Mazzoli, Elena Ruehr and Robert Ward.

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

JoAnn Falletta
Photo by Cheryl Gorski

This evening on Preview! JoAnn Falletta conducts the Buffalo Philharmonic in music of Vivaldi. Rob Kennedy speaks with violinist Randall Goosby. Pianist Andrew von Oeyen plays music of Beethoven. What’s On Preview! has detailed program notes.

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

Simone Dinnerstein
Photo ⓒ Lisa-Marie Mazzucco

American pianist Simone Dinnerstein is our guest on the July edition of My Life In Music.  Simone talks about her education, her teachers, and her life and work as a concert pianist.

My Life In Music is made possible by our listeners and by The Chamber Orchestra of the Triangle.  Join  Elizabeth Elliott for My Life In Music this evening at 5 p.m. Eastern.

This morning Great Sacred Music includes music sung by The Cathedral Singers, the Holland Boys’ Choir, and Les Demoiselles De Saint-Cyr. Also on the playlist is music by Johann Sebastian Bach, Louis Vierne, and Amy Beach. What’s On Great Sacred Music has detailed program notes.

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

Herbert Blomstedt
Foto: Micke Grönberg/Sveriges Radio

On July 11 we observe the birthdays of Swedish tenor Nicolai Gedda (1925-2017), and American conductor Herbert Blomstedt (1927-).

Gedda made his debut at the age of 26 singing a role in Adolphe Adam’s opera “Le postillon de Lonjumeau” which has one of the most demanding parts for tenor ever written. Gedda tossed it off with great aplomb. He died earlier this year. The following sentence from Wikipedia illustrates what a remarkable conductor Maestro Blomstedt is. “Blomstedt is currently Conductor Laureate of the San Francisco Symphony and Honorary Conductor of the Bamberg Symphony, Danish National Symphony Orchestra, NHK Symphony, Swedish Radio Symphony, Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra and Staatskapelle Dresden.” 


Saturday, July 10, 2021

Are you a Sustaining Member of The Classical Station? If you are, thank you! You are enjoying convenient, automatic, ongoing monthly contributions which you can change or stop at any time! Becoming a Sustaining Member is an easy way to increase the power of your support and put more of your dollars into the great classical music you depend on.

As a Sustaining Member, you will:

  •  Enjoy uninterrupted membership status at The Classical Station.
  •  Save us money spent on postage, paper, and administrative costs.
  •  Utilize an eco-friendly payment option that allows us to cut down on renewal mailings.
  •  Provide The Classical Station with a steady and reliable stream of income which allows us to plan for a sustainable future.

Here’s how a Sustaining Membership works: Your monthly contribution is deducted automatically from the account of your choice on the same day each month until you tell us to stop. You can make changes or cancel your Sustaining Membership at any time.

To Become a Sustaining Member, visit our Donation Page. Or call 800-556-5178 anytime. A member of staff will be happy to take down your information and instructions, as well as answer any questions you may have. Don’t forget to take a Thank You Gift or designate 10% of your Sustaining Membership to the Education Fund if you prefer. Thank you for being a Sustaining Member!

On July 10 we observe the birthdays of Polish violinist-composer Henryk Wieniawski (1835-1890), German composer Carl Orff (1895-1982), and German tenor Jonas Kaufmann (1969-).

Henryk Wieniawski was honored posthumously with two stamps and a coin. The income from “Carmina Burana” which was first performed in 1937 was significant to Orff. Herr Kaufmann is considered one of the great tenors of our time. 

Photo: Jonas Kaufmann by Julian Hargeaves

Friday, July 9, 2021

The number of composers represented on our playlists every day is quite remarkable. We program over 100 pieces of music every day. Some are short pieces especially during Rise and Shine and Allegro. Others are long works, such as you hear during Classical CafeAs You Like It, and Concert Hall. But notice that we don’t play only Beethoven or Brahms or Bach. Neither do we play only Baroque music or Romantic music. They say that variety is the spice of life. And so it is with our programming.

Friday at The Classical Station is All-Request Friday. You get to choose everything we play between 9 a.m. and 10 p.m. Eastern. On Saturday evening, you have another opportunity to select the music for the Saturday Evening Request Program. Call 919-556-0123 to make your request. Or submit it online or via our app. Thank you for supporting us.

On July 9 we observe the birthdays of Italian composer Ottorino Respighi (1879-1936), American composer David Diamond (1915-2005), and American conductor David Zinman (1936-).

Besides being the creator of such orchestral masterpieces as Fountains of Rome, Pines of Rome, and Roman Festivals, Signor Respighi was a musicologist. David Diamond was on the faculty of the Julliard School for many years. His notable students included Adolphus Hailstork and Eric Whitacre. Maestro Zinman was the conductor of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, and Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich over the course of his career. Happy 85th birthday, Maestro!

Photos: Ottorino Respighi, Unknown Author, Fair Use, Wikimedia Commons;  David Diamond, Unknown Author, Wikimedia Commons; David Zinman by Priska Ketterer

Thursday, July 8, 2021

Our weekly adult audience of over 180,000 listeners in Central North Carolina is mature, affluent, and well-educated. Our listeners 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, 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.


This evening the Thursday Night Opera House presents Charles Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette. In Renaissance Verona, Juliette (soprano Angela Gheorghiu) meets and falls in love with Roméo (tenor Roberto Alagna) at a masked ball given by her father Capulet (bass Alain Fondary), unaware that he is a member of the rival Montague family. Roméo escapes when recognized by Juliette’s cousin Thybalt (tenor Daniel Galvez Vallejo), but returns to serenade her under her balcony. The next day Frère Laurent (bass-baritone José Van Damm), hoping for peace between the warring families, secretly marries the young couple. Michel Plasson conducts the Capitole du Toulouse Orchestra and Chorus in this 1988 EMI Classics recording.

Tell your smart speaker to “play The Classical Station” at 7 p.m. Eastern. With host Bob Chapman.

On July 8 we observe the birthdays of Australian composer and arranger Percy Grainger (1882-1961) and English pianist Benjamin Grosvenor (1992-).

Grainger moved to the United States in 1914 and spent the rest of his life here. He was friends with Frederick Delius and Edvard Grieg. Grosvenor played the Liszt Second Piano Concerto on Opening Night of the BBC Proms in 2011. He was the youngest soloist ever to play Opening Night at the Proms.  Listen to Benjamin’s interview on Preview! with Rob Kennedy.

Photos: Percy Grainger, Unknown Author, Wikimedia Commons; Benjamin Grosvenor, Sophie Wright on Decca

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

Classical music was his companion. That’s why, in 2010, pop star, Kid Rock, raised a million dollars in a benefit concert and saved the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. The Classical Station is your companion, and you can have us with you everywhere you go. Just check out our app. We’re in your device’s store. Search for “WCPE Radio”.

On July 7 we observe the birthdays of Austrian composer Gustav Mahler (1860-1911), Italian-American composer Gian Carlo Menotti (1911-2007), and Danish recorder player Michala Petri (1958-).

Mahler made his living as a conductor. Composing those monumental ten symphonies and his other works was a part-time activity. Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Menotti wrote Amahl and the Night Visitors as well as ten other operas. Ms. Petri began playing the recorder at the age of 3. She has over thirty-four recordings to her credit.

Photos: Ms. Petri, Erik Klitgaard; Gustav Mahler, Moriz Nähr, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons; Gian Carlo Menotti, Carl Van Vechten, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

Tuesday, July 6, 2021

5 reasons you should support The Classical Station.

1. You love classical music. Classical music lovers can find the music they love 24/7 at The Classical Station. Commercial free with a minimum of talk.

2. We make the music available to you in a variety of formats. On the radio, on our app, on cable systems, online, and on our partner stations all around the United States. The Classical Station is at your fingertips whenever and however you choose to listen to us.

3. We are listener-supported. We do not receive funding from a large university or national radio association. Our $2.2 million annual budget is raised by contributions from listeners like you. What you give is up to you. Any and all gifts are gratefully received.

4. We are volunteer-powered. Over 200 volunteers answer the phones, stuff the envelopes, and host our programs on-air as announcers. It’s been that way since 1978. The Classical Station could not bring great classical music to you without these dedicated folks who believe in our mission. You can speak to one today when you call 800-556-5178.

5. We make every dollar you give s-t-r-e-t-c-h as far as we can. The Classical Station gives the adjective ‘frugal’ a new meaning! If you ever visit the station, you will be amazed at just how spartan the furnishings are. Much of it is donated. No mahogany paneling or plush offices here. Your gifts are used to bring great classical music to listeners everywhere. It’s our mission. It’s all that matters.

On July 6 we observe the birthday of Russian conductor and pianist Vladimir Davidovich Ashkenazy (1937-). Besides being a superb pianist, Ashkenazy has served as conductor of several major orchestras including the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, the NHK Symphony Orchestra, and the Sydney Symphony Orchestra.

Photo: Keith Saunders

Monday, July 5, 2021

This evening Monday Night at the Symphony features an American holiday evening with the Boston Pops Orchestra.  On the program is music of George Gershwin, Peter Tchaikovsky, and Leonard Bernstein in performances led by John Williams, Keith Lockhart, and the legendary Arthur Fiedler.

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

Simone Dinnerstein
Photo ⓒ Lisa-Marie Mazzucco

American pianist Simone Dinnerstein is our guest on the July edition of My Life In Music.  Simone talks about her education, her teachers, and her life and work as a concert pianist.

My Life In Music is made possible by our listeners and by The Chamber Orchestra of the Triangle.  Join  Elizabeth Elliott for My Life In Music this evening at 7 p.m. Eastern.

On July 5 we observe the birthdays of English composer William Crotch (1775-1847), Polish-French harpsichordist Wanda Landowska (1879-1859), and Hungarian-American cellist János Starker (1924-2013).

Dr. Crotch was the first Principal of the Royal Academy of Music. Wanda Landowska popularized the harpsichord back in the 40s and 50s. Starker was Distinguished Professor in the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University from 1958-2013.

Photo: William Crotch, Unknown Author, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons