Classical Music

James Gilray's "The Pic-nic Orchestra" (1802)
Credit [London] : Pubd. April 23d 1802 by H. Humphrey St. James's Street, [1802] / https://collections.nlm.nih.gov/catalog/nlm:nlmuid-101455846-img

Interlochen Public Radio is your gateway to news and classical music from Interlochen Center for the Arts. Learn about new music, upcoming performances and more.

Marty Sohl/Metropolitan Opera

Verdi’s Nabucco, conducted by Met Music Director Emeritus James Levine, with Plácido Domingo in a network role debut as the title character, the King of Babylon.Liudmyla Monastyrska sings the ambitious Abigaille, who is determined to seize control of the Babylonian empire. The cast also includes Jamie Barton as Fenena, Nabucco’s heroic daughter; Russell Thomas as Ismaele, nephew to the King of Jerusalem; and Dmitry Belosselskiy as the high priest of the Jews, Zaccaria.

Coming up: We’re throwing a New Year’s party, complete with cocktails, dancing, revelry...and regrets. If you’re auditioning for musical theatre these days, take notes at Intermission - we’ll have a list of songs that casting directors do NOT want to hear - and offer you a few alternatives. In Act Two - the Morning After.

Click through for this week's playlist!


Ben Johnston doesn't follow the rules of music. Sure, he's got degrees from two colleges and a conservatory. But from an early age, Johnston heard music differently. When he was growing up in Georgia, he questioned the standard scales he was taught in school. "I played by ear and I invented my own chords," he says.

In the last week of 2016, Songs We Love is featuring just a few of the songs that, for whatever reason, never got their due this year.

The clarinet and guitar are common enough instruments, but you've probably never heard them sound quite like this. In the hands of guitarist Golfam Khayam and clarinetist Mona Matbou Riahi, the instruments breathe together in music that borrows melody and improvisation from their Iranian homeland and classical structures from the West.

Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera

Rossini’s comedy L’Italiana in Algeri, conducted by the Met’s Music Director Emeritus James Levine. The comedic opera, heard in an archived performance from October, tells the story of a feisty Italian girl who gets kidnapped in Algiers, but tricks her captors and saves the day. Mezzo-soprano Marianna Pizzolato and tenor René Barbera made their respective company debuts as the title character, Isabella, and the love-struck Lindoro, whom she rescues.

The shopping's almost done. Menus are planned. The relatives are relatively under control.

Just one thing's missing from your holiday checklist — music.

Instead of fumbling through dusty CDs, LPs and cassettes, how about a click-of-the-mouse playlist of classical, and classy, holiday music?

There should be something here for just about everyone: plenty of Christmas carols, a few Hanukkah favorites and some off the beaten slope items.

The Great Lakes Chamber Orchestra and Chorus presented the holiday concert Messiah Plus One earlier this month. The concert included the Oratorio de Noël by Camille Saint-Saëns and the Prophecy and the Nativity from George Frederic Handel’s Messiah. Soloists included soprano Risa Renae Harman, mezzo-soprano Jamie Beth Platte, alto Martha Hart, tenor Tom Cilluffo, and baritone Jason Coffey. Messiah Plus One took place at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Petoskey.

One of our favorite traditions at Interlochen Public Radio is the yearly roundup of the staff's most beloved holiday music. We've got a crew with musical tastes all over the place, and we have great fun putting this together for you.

Tune in to Classical IPR at 6pm on December 22, at noon on December 24, or listen any time at the link below. Click through for the playlist of songs and performers.

Happy Everything from all of us at IPR! 


Earlier this month, the Traverse Symphony Orchestra presented its annual Home for the Holidays concert. The TSO was joined by the NMC Grand Traverse Chorale and Children's Choir.

Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera

Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel, in an English-language performance from January 1, 2008. Vladimir Jurowski led the performance, with soprano Christine Schäfer as Gretel; mezzo-soprano Alice Coote as Hansel; mezzo-soprano Rosalind Plowright and baritone Alan Held as their parents, Gertrude and Peter; and the late tenor Philip Langridge as the wicked Witch. The opera has been part of the Met’s holiday repertoire for decades: on Christmas Day, 1931, Hänsel und Gretel (sung in German) became the first complete opera to be broadcast from the Metropolitan Opera.

Winning the 2011 Thelonious Monk Competition rocketed jazz pianist Kris Bowers to fame in jazz circles and earned him gigs with the likes of Marcus Miller, Jose Jones and even Kanye West.

While many of his colleagues fall prey to the temptation to focus on technique to the exclusion of expression, Bowers leverages his interest in film scoring to keep him emotionally connected. “Music is all about storytelling,” he said. “Your job is to connect emotion to sound.”

Bowers stopped by Studio A for a special performance and a chat with fellow jazz performer Michael Thurber about his musical journey, his new album and his work as a film score composer.


In Memoriam 2016

Dec 19, 2016

Music suffered heavy losses in 2016, a year like no other in recent memory. We bid unexpected farewells to the very brightest stars — David Bowie and Prince — but we also lost masters from every corner of the music world, from classical composers and jazz greats to world music superstars, soul singers, country giants, prog-rock pioneers and record producers. They left us with unforgettable sounds and compelling stories. Hear their music and explore their legacies here.

(Credits: Tom Huizenga, producer; Mark Mobley, editor; Brittany Mayes, designer)

In hundreds of cities across the U.S. –- and a few abroad, too –- tuba and euphonium players are gathering for an annual tradition: TubaChristmas. The mandate of the event is simple: Gather a group of tuba and euphonium players and play holiday songs. Its scope, however, is large: These gatherings can include hundreds of tuba players, and this weekend alone, there are more than 60 TubaChristmas events from Hattiesburg, Miss, to Las Cruces, N.M. to San Ramón, Costa Rica.

Classical IPR's guided tour of the Christmas portion of George Frederic Handel's Messiah features a 2006 recording of the piece by the Dunedin Consort. This recording presents Messiah as it would have sounded at its first performance in 1742. More information about the recording (including how to purchase it) is available here.

Metropolitan Opera: Salome

Dec 12, 2016
Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera

Richard Strauss’s Salome starring Patricia Racette in the title role of the Judean princess. Racette makes a Met role debut in this production, as do her co-stars Željko Lučić as Jochanaan (John the Baptist); Nancy Fabiola Herrera as Herodias, Salome’s mother; and Gerhard Siegel as the lecherous King Herod. Chinese tenor Kang Wang makes his network broadcast debut as Narraboth, the Captain of the Guard. German conductor Johannes Debus, Music Director of the Canadian Opera Company, makes his Met debut this season leading this revival.

 

 

Twenty-nine years ago, cellist Zuill Bailey experienced what he called his “first awakening” at Interlochen Center for the Arts.

“It was my first real adventure ..” he said. “I was surrounded by people who were like me, and it was the first time I felt a sense of community.”

Since that awakening, it is not enough for Bailey to simply perform: he’s now just as active off stage, carving time out of his busy solo schedule to serve as an artistic director, clinician and classical music advocate. “I’m enjoying so many aspects of life in music because of this torch, the cello,” he said.

Between rehearsals with the World Youth Symphony Orchestra this summer, Bailey joined Christopher Gruits in Classical IPR’s Studio A for a special performance and a discussion of his call to give back to his community.


Metropolitan Opera: L'Amour de Loin

Dec 5, 2016
Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera

Susanna Mälkki conducts the cast which stars Eric Owens as Jaufré Rudel, a troubadour on a quest to find his perfect love, opposite Susanna Phillips as Clémence, the Countess of Tripoli, and Tamara Mumford as the Pilgrim who carries messages across the sea between them.

Listen LIVE on Classical IPR on Saturday, December 10 at 1pm ET.

Welcome to Episode 32 of Show Tunes with Kate Botello! Coming up: we’ll get into War and Peace with Josh Groban, go to Paris, and try to age gracefully. Or not. We’ll check in with some of the shows of the moment, and, at Intermission, bend your brain a bit with some Broadway trivia.

Click through for this week's playlist!


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