Anastasia Tsioulcas

Anastasia Tsioulcas is an Associate Producer for NPR Music. In this role she is responsible for producing, blogging and occasional reporting on classical and world music.

Tsioulcas is co-host of NPR's classical music blog, Deceptive Cadence, and also produces live concert webcasts, ranging from Member Station co-productions to other live concerts and special events, including Field Recordings and Tiny Desk Concerts, that she's helped curate and produce.

While here at NPR, Tsioulcas has produced, coordinated and reported on a variety of topics and initiatives including rallying a few hundred singers to Times Square for a "flash choir" to sing the world premiere of a new Philip Glass piece, commissioned by NPR Music. Tsioulcas also had the opportunity to speak with Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Steve Reich about his piece WTC 9/11 and she produced and co-hosted a live concert at (Le) Poisson Rouge with legendary conductor Daniel Barenboim and his West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, comprised of players from Israel and across the Arab world.

Prior to joining NPR in April 2011, she was widely published as a writer on both classical and world music, and was the former North America editor for Gramophone Magazine and the classical music columnist for Billboard. She has also been an on-air contributor to many public radio programs, including WNYC's Soundcheck, Minnesota Public Radio's The Savvy Traveler, Public Radio International's Weekend America, and the BBC's The World. As a world music journalist, she has reported from across north and western Africa, South Asia and Europe on the music and culture of those regions.

Born in Boston, Tsioulcas was trained from an early age as a Western classical violinist and violist. She holds a BA from Barnard College, Columbia University in comparative religion.

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Deceptive Cadence
11:03 am
Mon December 1, 2014

What's Your Top 100 Of The Last 100 Years?

Composer Steve Reich, whose Music for 18 Musicians pulled out ahead of Gershwin, Shostakovich, Bartok, Ives, Berg and all others in last year's Q2 poll.
Wonge Bergmann Courtesy of the artist

For the past few years, member station Q2 in New York City has been enlisting listeners in a thought-provoking year-end poll. Forget the best music of the last year — what are the very best compositions of the last century?

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Music
11:32 am
Wed November 26, 2014

Celebrate Some Of The Year's Best New Releases With Q2

Grammy-winning violist Kim Kashkashian, who plays in the chamber ensemble Tre Voci.
Steve Riskind Courtesy of the artist

What's some of the most exciting music from 2014?

Find out with our member station Q2 Music, which is hosting an evening dedicated to three important album releases from the year nearly past. The concert takes place at The Greene Space in New York on Dec. 2 at 7 PM.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:20 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

Musicians' Brains Really Do Work Differently — In A Good Way

Brains have a "full-body" workout when their owners play music.
TED-Ed

"Did you know that every time musicians pick up their instruments, there are fireworks going off all over their brain?"

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Deceptive Cadence
4:47 pm
Mon November 17, 2014

Uncovering The Heart Of Chopin — Literally

Composer and pianist Frederic Chopin, who died in 1849.
General Photographic Agency Getty Images

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Deceptive Cadence
4:39 pm
Wed October 29, 2014

Just Who Is This Opera Star Singing At The World Series Tonight?

Mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato, who is singing the national anthem at Game 7 of the World Series tonight in Kansas City, Mo.
Simon Pauly Courtesy of the artist

Maybe this trajectory mirrors the Kansas City Royals' unlikely road to the pennant: An opera star beats out much more mainstream artists to sing the national anthem at the decisive World Series Game 7.

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Carnegie Hall Live
4:24 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

Carnegie Hall Live: András Schiff Plays Mozart, Haydn, Schubert And Beethoven

Andras Schiff plays final piano sonatas by Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven and Schubert at Carnegie Hall March 10, 2015.
Jean-Francois Gailloud ECM Records

On March 10, 2015, hear the eminent pianist in a recital of sublime works spanning the Classical-era elegance of Haydn and Mozart and the introspective Romantic drama of Schubert and Beethoven.

PROGRAM

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Deceptive Cadence
4:07 pm
Wed September 24, 2014

Remembering Christopher Hogwood, An Evangelist For Early Music

The late conductor, keyboard player and scholar Christopher Hogwood.
Marco Borggreve Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu December 18, 2014 3:37 pm

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First Listen
11:03 pm
Sun September 21, 2014

First Listen: Brooklyn Rider, 'The Brooklyn Rider Almanac'

Brooklyn Rider's new album, The Brooklyn Rider Almanac, comes out Sept. 30.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed October 1, 2014 10:36 am

It's become a trope that artists aren't interested in being limited by genre — at least the really fascinating ones, that is. One of the most enjoyable current examples of this reach beyond stylistic divides is Almanac, the newest project from the string quartet Brooklyn Rider.

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First Listen
11:01 pm
Sun September 21, 2014

First Listen: John Luther Adams, 'Become Ocean'

Cantaloupe

Originally published on Wed October 1, 2014 10:33 am

When John Luther Adams' sweeping orchestral piece Become Ocean was performed at Carnegie Hall for the first time in May, it was also the first time the composer had attended a concert there.

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Deceptive Cadence
1:45 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

Watch A Sweet Little Butterfly Nearly Crush A Woman's Hopes And Dreams

Flutist Yukie Ota kept her cool at the Carl Nielsen Flute Competition yesterday in Odense, Denmark.
Odense Symphony

Originally published on Sat September 20, 2014 11:16 am

Flutist Yukie Ota spoke with NPR's Scott Simon about her encounter with a too-friendly insect this week; hear their conversation at the audio link and read on to learn more.

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Deceptive Cadence
4:04 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

Philip Glass And Steve Reich At BAM: Together Again Yet Still Apart

Four Organs by Steve Reich was performed Tuesday at the Brooklyn Academy of Music as part of the 50th anniversary of the Nonesuch label (from left: Philip Glass, Nico Muhly, David Cossin, Timo Andres and Steve Reich).
Stephanie Berger

Throughout this month, the Brooklyn Academy of Music's signature Next Wave Festival is celebrating a record label with which it shares history and purpose: Nonesuch, marking its 50th anniversary this year.

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Deceptive Cadence
8:11 pm
Sat August 16, 2014

Centenarian Soprano Licia Albanese Dies

Soprano Licia Albanese in an undated photo, posing as Violetta in Verdi's La traviata.
Sedge LeBlang courtesy of the Metropolitan Opera

Originally published on Sun August 17, 2014 8:59 am

Italian-American lyric soprano Licia Albanese, known for her deeply felt character portrayals, died Friday at her home in New York, her son, Joseph Gimma, told NPR Music Saturday. She was 105 years old.

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Deceptive Cadence
9:44 am
Tue August 12, 2014

Read These While They're Still Free

Pianist Helene Grimaud, the subject of a 2011 New Yorker profile.
Mat Hennek Courtesy of the artist

Last month, The New Yorker announced that it was teasing a new "freemium" version of its website (which launches this fall) with an alluring proposition. All of its most recent pieces, plus the full archives back to 2007 and some even older selections, are free for the rest of the summer.

So we took this opportunity to dig up some delicious classical music-minded pieces from the magazine's archives. They're perfect long reads for a lazy August afternoon.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:02 pm
Wed July 30, 2014

A Breath Of Inspiration: John Luther Adams' New 'Sila'

An overhead shot of the performance of John Luther Adams' Sila at New York's Lincoln Center Friday evening.
Kevin Yatarola Courtesy of Lincoln Center

Originally published on Mon August 18, 2014 7:08 pm

Composer John Luther Adams has been enjoying enormous success.

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Deceptive Cadence
10:57 am
Tue July 22, 2014

America's Youth Orchestra Hits The Road — This Time, Playing For U.S.

The French horns of the National Youth Orchestra of the USA — a yearly summer project organized by Carnegie Hall — rehearsed Saturday in Purchase, N.Y., in advance of their tour around the country.
Chris Lee Courtesy of the National Youth Orchestra of the USA

Originally published on Tue July 22, 2014 2:23 pm

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Deceptive Cadence
8:29 am
Wed July 16, 2014

How The 3 Tenors Sang The Hits And Changed The Game

Placido Domingo, José Carreras and Luciano Pavarotti at Dodgers Stadium in Los Angeles, with conductor Zubin Mehta.
Courtesy of the artists

Originally published on Fri August 1, 2014 8:56 am

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Deceptive Cadence
11:53 am
Thu July 3, 2014

After 36 Years, A Trumpeter Sounds His Last Note In New York

New York Philharmonic principal trumpeter Philip Smith plays at New York's Park Avenue Armory in a performance in June 2012.
Chris Lee Courtesy of the New York Philharmonic

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Deceptive Cadence
1:03 pm
Tue June 24, 2014

What's Worth $45 Million — Or More? One Viola

David Aaron Carpenter plays the 'Macdonald' Stradivarius viola at Sotheby's auction house for NPR in April.
Manya Zuba/NPR

Originally published on Wed June 25, 2014 5:23 pm

Update Wednesday, June 25, 2014: A representative from Sotheby's tells NPR that the instrument did not sell "at this time."

Wednesday, Sotheby's auction house plans to announce the sale of a rare viola made by Antonio Stradivari. The minimum bid is $45 million. If it sells, it will be the most expensive instrument of any kind in history.

Here's an old musician joke: How do you keep your violin from getting stolen? Put it in a viola case.

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Deceptive Cadence
3:23 am
Wed June 18, 2014

A Rhythm That Has Waltzed Away With Hearts

Debutantes in the opening waltz of the 2011 Vienna Opera Ball. The head of the Vienna Institute for Strauss Research calls the waltz "Austria's premier cultural export."
JOE KLAMAR AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 24, 2014 3:11 pm

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Deceptive Cadence
12:14 pm
Wed June 11, 2014

Rafael Fruhbeck De Burgos, Versatile Spanish Conductor, Dies At 80

The versatile Spanish conductor Rafael Frübeck de Burgos.
Morten Abrahamsen

Originally published on Wed June 11, 2014 12:44 pm

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Deceptive Cadence
5:06 pm
Tue June 3, 2014

What Weeks Of Debate Have Shown Us About Women In Classical Music

A prop maker readies a portrait of Octavian (Tara Erraught) in advance of the first performance of Der Rosenkavalier at the Glyndebourne Festival last month.
Matthew Lloyd Getty Images

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 10:29 am

An astonishing conversation has emerged in the weeks since Irish mezzo-soprano Tara Erraught began her run as Octavian at the Glyndebourne Festival in England. Erraught was excoriated by a handful of male London critics for her weight — prompting a widespread backlash on her behalf in the aftermath of those reviews.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:04 pm
Wed May 28, 2014

Read Joyce DiDonato's Inspiring Juilliard Commencement Speech

Mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato.
Simon Pauly Courtesy of the artist

Star mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato gave the 2014 commencement address at Juilliard Friday — and it's a memorable one, both for her words and by DiDonato's own example as someone whose own career began under low heat.

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First Listen
11:03 pm
Sun May 25, 2014

First Listen: Gabriel Kahane, 'The Ambassador'

Gabriel Kahane's new album, The Ambassador, comes out June 3.
Josh Goleman Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 11:59 am

Composer and singer-songwriter Gabriel Kahane says that the inspiration for his new album, The Ambassador, is 10 buildings in Los Angeles — appropriate, given what a gifted musical architect he is.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:57 pm
Tue May 20, 2014

In 2014, The Classical World Still Can't Stop Fat-Shaming Women

How did the figure of Irish mezzo Tara Erraught prompt such a seething mass of contempt from a handful of London critics?
Courtesy of the artist

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Deceptive Cadence
1:23 pm
Mon May 19, 2014

Does Accepting A Rose Mean Losing A Career?

The newest round of Bachelorette contestants include an aspiring popera dude.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon May 19, 2014 5:08 pm

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Deceptive Cadence
10:17 am
Fri May 9, 2014

Watch Bang On A Can Occupy 'Arthur'

Two of the Bang on a Can All-Stars immortalized on the kids' cartoon Arthur.
Courtesy of 'Arthur'

Originally published on Fri May 9, 2014 5:56 pm

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Deceptive Cadence
10:59 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Midspring Surprise: Lost Mendelssohn Song Found

An engraving of composer Felix Mendelssohn, c. 1840.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 6, 2014 9:04 pm

Twenty-nine gentle measures by Felix Mendelssohn are creating quite a stir — after being lost for more than a century.

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Deceptive Cadence
2:32 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Classical Quartet Gets All Twisted

Look, Ma! Behind our backs!
Courtesy of the artists

A German quartet calling themselves the Salut Salon is surging in social media right now with a bout of one-upwomanship that mixes together music, acrobatics and some good slapstick timing.

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Deceptive Cadence
11:14 am
Thu April 3, 2014

How Do You Sweep The Ivy League? Practice — The Viola. (Really.)

Was playing a much-maligned instrument — or writing about it beautifully — part of Kwasi Enin's secret? (Not that he is playing the 'Archinto' Stradivarius pictured here.)
Peter Macdiarmid Getty Images

By now, you may have heard about Kwasi Enin, the impressive young man from Long Island who has been accepted into the classes of 2018 at Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Princeton, the University of Pennsylvania, Yale (all eight Ivy League universities) as well as Duke and three campuses of the State University of New York.

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Deceptive Cadence
3:01 am
Thu March 27, 2014

The Kronos Quartet: Still Daring After All These Years

The Kronos Quartet (from left): David Harrington, John Sherba, Sunny Yang and Hank Dutt.
Jay Blakesberg Courtesy of the artists

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 12:18 pm

Kronos Quartet is celebrating 40 years of playing music together — and to mark the occasion, they're playing a celebration concert at Carnegie Hall in New York tomorrow night. Since their founding, the San Francisco-based string quartet has become one of the most visible ensembles in classical music. The players have done it by championing new and underheard music, and by coming up with a business model that was unheard of for a chamber group four decades ago.

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