Arts

Deceptive Cadence
5:19 am
Sun August 11, 2013

Chris Thile Looks Back To Bach

Chris Thile's new album, Sonatas and Partitas, draws from material written by Johann Sebastian Bach in the early 1700s.
Brantley Gutierrez Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed August 14, 2013 2:09 pm

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Deceptive Cadence
7:41 am
Sat August 10, 2013

The American Symphonic Legacy: Not Just For White Guys

George Walker is considered the elder statesman of today's African-American composers.
Gregory Walker Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue August 20, 2013 12:23 pm

This summer, NPR Classical has been looking for the great American symphony — or at least some idea of what it might sound like.

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Deceptive Cadence
5:55 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

Versatile Opera Star, Director, Teacher Regina Resnik Dies at 90

Regina Resnik as Ellen Orford in the Metropolitan Opera premiere of Benjamin Britten's Peter Grimes in 1948.
Metropolitan Opera Archives

Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 1:11 pm

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Deceptive Cadence
11:51 am
Fri August 9, 2013

Throwing A Fit In F-Sharp

Pablo Helguera for NPR

Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.

Pablo Helguera is a New York-based artist working with sculpture, drawing, photography and performance. His new book is Helguera's Artunes. You can see more of his work at Artworld Salon and on his own site.

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Deceptive Cadence
8:18 am
Tue August 6, 2013

And in This Corner: A Baritone Fights For Opera On The BBC

Baritone Thomas Hampson takes his punches for opera on a BBC talk show.
Dario Acosta

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 5:32 pm

With an interview show named HARDtalk I suppose the host might be expected to come out swinging. And recently the BBC's Sarah Montague did not disappoint.

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Deceptive Cadence
8:03 am
Mon August 5, 2013

A Pulitzer Winner Asks: Why Write Symphonies?

Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Kevin Puts is still inspired by the age-old symphonic form.
Andrew Shapter

Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 5:32 pm

In 2007, I was interviewed by a journalist over lunch a day before the premiere of my Violin Concerto. One of his first questions was, "So why do you write in these old forms, the symphony, the concerto ... ?" I told him that these were simply titles which imply nothing about the form, which was another thing entirely. But it led me to ask myself: What is a symphony these days? If it no longer comprises a four-movement structure with an energetic first movement, a slow movement, a scherzo, and some kind of quick rondo, then what exactly characterizes it?

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Ecstatic Voices
2:03 am
Sat August 3, 2013

Songs Of Africa: Beautiful Music With A Violent History

Fred Onovwerosuoke founded the St. Louis African Chorus 20 years ago.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun August 4, 2013 10:00 am

For the next year, NPR will take a musical journey across America, which is one of the most religiously diverse countries on earth. We want to discover and celebrate the many ways in which people make spiritual music — individually and collectively, inside and outside houses of worship.

The founder of the choral group Sounds of Africa is Fred Onovwerosuoke. He was born in Ghana and brought up in Nigeria, and his choir in the heart of the U.S. — St. Louis, Mo., to be exact — has recorded his arrangements of African sacred music by a composer named Ikoli Harcourt Whyte.

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Deceptive Cadence
11:59 am
Fri August 2, 2013

Heifetz Up With Piatigorsky On Third

Pablo Helguera for NPR

Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.

Pablo Helguera is a New York-based artist working with sculpture, drawing, photography and performance. His new book is Helguera's Artunes. You can see more of his work at Artworld Salon and on his own site.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:53 pm
Thu August 1, 2013

5 American Symphonies You Should Know

Robert Spano, music director of the Aspen Music Festival and School, conducts the Aspen Chamber Symphony. He is a fan of the Third Symphony by Aaron Copland.
Alex Irvin

Originally published on Thu August 1, 2013 5:01 pm

It's not quite the quest for the Holy Grail, but we're in pursuit this summer of the "Great American Symphony." And in many respects, our journey is just as important as our destination.

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Deceptive Cadence
1:00 pm
Tue July 30, 2013

Creating American Symphonies To Tell 'Distinctly American' Stories

New York-based composer Mohammed Fairouz.
Samantha West Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun August 4, 2013 8:48 am

To say that you're writing a symphony today is a statement, especially for a young composer like me. The challenge is to find just the right way to commandeer the age-old form, to render it fresh and vital once again within an American context.

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Tiny Desk Concerts
8:55 am
Sat July 27, 2013

Time For Three: Tiny Desk Concert

Time For Three performs a Tiny Desk Concert.
NPR

Originally published on Mon December 23, 2013 6:20 pm

Pigeonholing the classically trained string trio Time for Three isn't easy, but that's also a blessing. The musicians — violinists Zachary De Pue and Nick Kendall with double bassist Ranaan Meyer — say they love a kaleidoscopic spectrum of music. "If we like it, we play it" is their motto.

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Deceptive Cadence
11:55 am
Fri July 26, 2013

New Traffic Signs Near Tanglewood

Pablo Helguera

Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.

Pablo Helguera is a New York-based artist working with sculpture, drawing, photography and performance. His new book is Helguera's Artunes. You can see more of his work at Artworld Salon and on his own site.

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Concerts
3:22 pm
Thu July 25, 2013

Kronos Quartet: Behind The Scenes And Out Of Doors

Fela Kuti's "Sorrow, Tears and Blood" performed by the Kronos Quartet and the vibrant Abena Koomson and Sahr Ngaujah.
Kevin Yatarola courtesy of Lincoln Center

Originally published on Tue July 8, 2014 10:38 am

PROGRAM:

Kronos Quartet & Superhuman Happiness: Suite from How to Survive a Plague (world premiere)

Kronos Quartet, Abena Koomson & Sahr Ngaujah: Fela Kuti, "Sorrow, Tears and Blood"

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Deceptive Cadence
2:03 am
Thu July 25, 2013

The High, Heavenly Voice Of David Daniels

Countertenor David Daniels (right) and dancer Reed Luplau in the Santa Fe Opera's world-premiere production of Oscar, based on the life of Oscar Wilde.
Ken Howard Santa Fe Opera

Originally published on Sat August 3, 2013 9:19 am

"You very quickly forget whether it's a male voice or a female voice. ... Because he's such a terrific musician, and so expressive, the fact that it's a man singing in a woman's range becomes irrelevant, and what we hear is the music."

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Deceptive Cadence
10:39 am
Wed July 24, 2013

Symphonic Music, American Style: 3 Must-Hear Albums

BMOP Sound

Originally published on Tue September 2, 2014 3:47 pm

Throughout the summer we're searching for the "Great American Symphony." It's not exactly a popularity contest. Instead, we're pondering American symphonic music from both the past and the present. Some composers like the young Kevin Puts and the veteran Martin Boykan, are labeling their pieces as symphonies. Others, like Michael Daugherty, can prefer more playful titles.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:44 pm
Mon July 22, 2013

Licia Albanese: An Opera Diva Hits 100

Soprano Licia Albanese sang the title role in Puccini's Madama Butterfly 72 times at the Metropolitan Opera.
The Metropolitan Opera Archives

Originally published on Mon July 22, 2013 1:27 pm

It's not every day a great opera diva makes it to the century mark. So let's take a moment to cheer for Licia Albanese, the beloved Metropolitan Opera star, who celebrates her 100th today and who most likely would not care to be called a "diva."

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Deceptive Cadence
5:02 am
Sat July 20, 2013

A Veteran's Piercing True Story Leaps From Page To Stage

The Long Walk, Brian Castner's memoir of PTSD and a difficult homecoming, will soon be an opera.
YouTube

Originally published on Tue July 23, 2013 6:26 pm

Iraq veteran Brian Castner wrote a book about his struggle with post-traumatic stress disorder for his kids, so they could someday know what he'd been going through when he came home from war.

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Deceptive Cadence
11:55 am
Fri July 19, 2013

Music For His Adoring Fins

Cartoon by Pablo Helguera.
Pablo Helguera

Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.

Pablo Helguera is a New York-based artist working with sculpture, drawing, photography and performance. His new book is Helguera's Artunes. You can see more of his work at Artworld Salon and on his own site.

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Parallels
3:15 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Opera Singer Becomes (Soprano) Voice Of Protest In Portugal

Pinto leads protesters in song during anti-austerity demonstrations. "I'm just a normal citizen," she says. "I just have this strong instinct of protecting what I love, and I do deeply love my country."
Courtesy of Ana Maria Pinto

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 7:45 am

For embattled Portuguese President Anibal Cavaco Silva, Oct. 5 started bad, and then got even worse.

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Deceptive Cadence
2:49 pm
Wed July 17, 2013

Carnegie Hall's Barnstorming Youth Movement

Cellist Angelique Montes, resident advisor Melissa Willams and clarinetist Tom Jeon arrive at Purchase College, State University of New York to begin their NYO-USA adventure.
Chris Lee courtesy of Carnegie Hall

This is the kind of opportunity most classical musicians can only dream about: to be invited to spend part of the summer with an orchestra touring the world — Washington, Moscow, St. Petersburg and London — with two of the biggest names in classical music, conductor Valery Gergiev and violinist Joshua Bell.

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Deceptive Cadence
10:54 am
Mon July 15, 2013

Tracing The Spirit Of The Early American Symphony

Amy Beach, with her 1896 "Gaelic" Symphony, was among America's early symphonic composers.
Library of Congress

Originally published on Tue August 20, 2013 12:21 pm

Leonard Bernstein, in a New York Philharmonic Young People's Concert, once summarized the late 19th century as the "kindergarten period" of American music and proceeded to make fun of George Whitefield Chadwick, Boston's leading composer from that period. But in citing Chadwick's Melpomene Overture, Bernstein stacked the deck.

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Deceptive Cadence
7:16 am
Sat July 13, 2013

From Carnegie Hall, A Youth Orchestra That's A National First

Conductor Valery Gergiev leads the National Youth Orchestra through its first rehearsal with the maestro, at Purchase College outside New York City.
Chris Lee

Originally published on Sat July 13, 2013 1:22 pm

It's a hot summer afternoon and the recital hall at Purchase College is abuzz with excitement and nervous energy. One hundred and twenty teenagers, from 42 states, are about to embark on an extraordinary musical and personal journey.

Clive Gillinson, executive director of Carnegie Hall, steps up to the podium to greet them. "Welcome to all of you," he says. "It's wonderful to welcome you here to the first-ever National Youth Orchestra of the United States of America!"

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Deceptive Cadence
11:56 am
Fri July 12, 2013

In Rehearsal: Slo-Mo Ma And Emanuel Accelerated

Pablo Helguera

Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.

Pablo Helguera is a New York-based artist working with sculpture, drawing, photography and performance. His new book is Helguera's Artunes. You can see more of his work at Artworld Salon and on his own site.

Read more
Field Recordings
10:49 am
Fri July 12, 2013

Eli Keszler & So Percussion: Making The Manhattan Bridge Roar And Sing

Mito Habe-Evans/NPR

Originally published on Tue July 8, 2014 10:07 am

There is magic in pure sound. And few know that truth as well as the quartet called So Percussion and the installation artist and drummer Eli Keszler — artists who, before this spring, had never met. We thought that they might find kindred spirits in each other.

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Deceptive Cadence
8:03 am
Thu July 11, 2013

Schoenberg Doesn't Suck: Serialism Demystified

Vi Hart explains twelve-tone serialism on YouTube.
courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu July 11, 2013 9:44 pm

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Law
4:33 pm
Wed July 10, 2013

Scalia V. Ginsburg: Supreme Court Sparring, Put To Music

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu July 11, 2013 12:39 pm

On the day after the Supreme Court concluded its epic term in June, two of the supreme judicial antagonists, Justice Antonin Scalia and Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, met over a mutual love: opera.

When it comes to constitutional interpretation, the conservative Scalia and the liberal Ginsburg are leaders of the court's two opposing wings. To make matters yet more interesting, the two have been friends for decades, since long before Scalia was named to the court by President Reagan and Ginsburg by President Clinton.

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Deceptive Cadence
8:03 am
Wed July 10, 2013

Electric Guitars Amp Up New Classical Music

Some of the 200 guitarists who took part in Rhys Chatham's A Crimson Grail at Lincoln Center's Out of Doors Festival in August 2009.
YouTube

Originally published on Wed July 10, 2013 10:12 am

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Deceptive Cadence
1:00 pm
Mon July 8, 2013

Music Is The Mission, Not Money

The Benedict Music Tent in Aspen.
Alex Irvin courtesy of the Aspen Music Festival and School

Originally published on Mon July 8, 2013 3:45 pm

One of the great summertime classical gathering spots in America is the Aspen Music Festival and School.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:03 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

Behind The Music: Charles Ives

Pablo Helguera

Originally published on Fri July 26, 2013 10:49 am

In honor of our search for the great American symphony, here's an encore presentation of one of our favorite Artunes. Got an idea for a classical cartoon or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.

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Deceptive Cadence
4:47 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

The Innovative Mosaic Of American Symphonies

Conductor JoAnn Falletta.
Cheryl Gorski courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed July 31, 2013 12:34 pm

Our country's culture is a vast conglomeration of more than 200 years of influences from all over the world. We have taken what began as an extraordinary European tradition and expanded that legacy on American soil. We have added our essential egalitarianism, our love of experimentation, our inclusiveness and our boldness to the very form of the symphony. Americans have not been bound by one definition of the symphony, and composers have applied that formal name to pieces of varying length, structure and content.

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