December 10, 2013 5:03 pm
Classical Classroom, Episode 33: Cracking "The Nutcracker" with Michael Remson and Shelly Power
We all know The Nutcracker, right? Wrong! In this episode of Classical Classroom, Shelly Power (director, Houston Ballet Academy) and Michael Remson (executive director, American Festival of the Arts) blow your minds with the history of the ballet and a behind-the-scenes look at the massive undertaking that putting on the show entails every year.
December 10, 2013 4:48 pm
Houston Music Highlight: Houston Symphony
Houston Music Highlight is a regular segment featuring performances by Houston-based ensembles and soloists. This time the Houston Symphony, under former music director Leopold Stokowski, performs the conductor’s own transcription of a Chopin Mazurka (Op. 17, No. 4) from a recently-rereleased and remastered recording which first came out on the Everest label in 1960.
December 9, 2013 4:22 pm
The Art Guys Agree On Painting, Again, This Time From Thirty Feet Up
Houston's Jack Massing and Michael Galbreth, the Art Guys, celebrate 30 years of collaboration with the creation of a new performative painting.
December 6, 2013 6:07 pm
Opera Cheat Sheet: Rigoletto
Need a quick primer on this week's opera? Listen to our light-hearted overview of Giuseppe Verdi's towering tragedy Rigoletto, which opens a brand new Metropolitan Opera broadcast season Saturday at noon.
December 6, 2013 6:04 pm
Messiah!...from the Houston Chamber Choir & ROCO
Saturday evening, December 6th, at St. John the Divine in River Oaks, the Houston Chamber Choir and the River Oaks Chamber Orchestra present Part I of Handel's Messiah (the Christmas part), and Alessandro Scarlatti's Christmas Cantata. HCC artistic director Robert Simpson came in to talk to St.John Flynn about this Christmas performance by the two ensembles.
December 6, 2013 4:02 pm
Houston Ballet's Jubilee of Dance
Houston Ballet's annual Jubilee of Dance takes to the stage of the Wortham Center's Brown Theatre tonight, for one night only. This year's Jubille celebrates Stanton Welch’s 10th anniversary as Artistic Director and features the full company in Welch's re-imagining of Marius Petipa's classical showpiece Paquita. Houston Ballet's Andrew Edmonson talks about the Jubilee of Dance with St.John Flynn
December 6, 2013 12:31 pm
Music in the Making December 8th at 7:06 PM
Princeton Miles hosts Music in the Making. Enjoy an hour of performances from the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University and the Moores School of Music at the University of Houston including works by Prokofiev, Francois Rabbath, and Rice's Richard Lavenda. MusicLab Intern Daniel Webbon chats with Moores School alumnus George Heathco.
December 4, 2013 6:03 pm
Liminal Space Contemporary Ensemble: Steve Reich's 2 x 5
Music Lab Intern Daniel Webbon sits down with University of Houston Alumnus George Heathco to talk about his upcoming performance of Steve Reich's 2 x 5.
December 4, 2013 5:21 pm
Classical Classroom, Episode 32: The Making of Handel's Messiah with Robert Simpson
Handel's Messiah is a beloved Christmas favorite. But, as Robert Simpson, founder and artistic director of Houston Chamber Choir, tells us, it is oh-so-much more than the "Hallelujah" chorus. Like, 250 pages more. All of which we cover in this half-hour episode. Just kidding!
December 4, 2013 4:58 pm
Houston Music Highlight
Houston Music Highlight is a regular segment featuring performances by Houston-based ensembles and soloists. In this segment we hear music by the Presti guitar trio from their recently-released debut album.
December 4, 2013 4:57 pm
The Spirit of Christmas: A Christmas Carol at the Alley Theatre
Actors Jeffrey Bean and John Feltch, Ebenezer Scrooge and Mrs. Dilber respectively, talk with St.John Flynn about the Alley Theatre’s annual staging of Michael Wilson’s production of A Christmas Carol - A Ghost Story of Christmas, based on the famous novella by Charles Dickens.
December 3, 2013 9:45 am
New CD Release of Music by Rice University's Richard Lavenda
Chiaroscuro is the newly-released CD of chamber music by Shepherd School of Music faculty composer Richard Lavenda. The five pieces on the album, including a string quintet titled thoughts fly, were all written for friends, many at Rice. Listen to the composer talking about, and hear a movement from, thoughts fly, from an interview earlier this year with St.John Flynn.
November 27, 2013 6:27 pm
Hans Graf Returns to Conduct the Houston Symphony
This weekend (Nov. 29-Dec. 1) Hans Graf returns to Jones Hall as Conductor Laureate to lead the Houston Symphony in performances featuring Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony and Argentinian pianist Ingrid Fliter performing Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 23. Also on the program, Edvard Grieg’s overture In Autumn. Dean Dalton talks to both artists about this weekend’s music.
November 27, 2013 1:59 pm
Opera Cheat Sheet: Tristan und Isolde
Listen to our quick, light-hearted overview of Richard Wagner’s monumental Tristan und Isolde, one of the pinnacles of the operatic repertoire, and one of the greatest love stories ever told, which is this week’s Houston Grand Opera broadcast, Saturday at noon here on Classical 91.7.
November 27, 2013 1:12 pm
Classical Classroom, Episode 31: The Music of Hanukkah (Chanuka? Hanuka?) with Cantor Benjamin Matis
Happy Thanksgivukkah everyone! That's right: the Julian and the Hebrew calendars have aligned this year to create a day even more amazing than Hanukkah and more delicious than Thanksgiving. There won't be another until the year 79811! To honor this rare occasion, Cantor Benjamin Matis of the Shelter Rock Jewish Center in Roslyn, NY in Long Island schools us on the history and music of Hanukkah.
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December 11, 2013 12:39 pm
Funk, Faust And Stone: Three Stunning Albums From 2013
Deceptive Cadence host Anastasia Tsioulcas talks with All Things Considered host Audie Cornish about three essential classical and world music releases from 2013 from very different parts of the globe: Bartok's Hungarian dancing, a percussion epic from Alaska and sweaty Nigerian funk.
December 9, 2013 4:19 pm
When 'Hit List' Got Another Shot At An Audience
At a concert staging, Smash die-hards get a look at what the show's second-season rock musical was meant to be like.
December 8, 2013 4:29 pm
Meat And Booze With A Side Of Still Life: American Painters On Food
Food as a symbol of politics, diet, gender roles, technology, isolation, gluttony and blatant commercialism has been with us for ages and in many forms. A massive exhibit explores how American artists, from Pilgrim times to Andy Warhol, used paintings of food to shape and reflect our national identity.
December 6, 2013 2:06 pm
Delightful 'Six By Sondheim' Leaves You Wanting Six More
HBO's new TV special is part biography, part music-appreciation lesson and part performance piece. Critic David Bianculli says it's a superbly compiled work, overseen by two of the people most intimately familiar with the composer himself.
December 6, 2013 2:05 pm
'On Sondheim': The Musical-Theater Legend At 80
The New York Times calls Stephen Sondheim the "greatest and perhaps best-known artist in American musical theater." Sondheim composed the music and lyrics for, among others, Sweeney Todd, Into the Woods and Company. In 2010 he joined Fresh Air to discuss his career in musical theater.
December 6, 2013 12:05 pm
A Bumper Crop Of Classical Box Sets
It's been a banner year for classical box sets. Deceptive Cadence hosts Anastasia Tsioulcas and Tom Huizenga tell us why and choose a few of their favorites.
December 5, 2013 6:48 pm
'Pearl Earring' Is The Crown Jewel Of The Frick's Dutch Exhibit
New York City is home to more paintings by Johannes Vermeer — eight — than any other city. And until mid-January, it's playing host to one more: the world-renowned Girl with a Pearl Earring. Critic Lloyd Schwartz says, since the painting's 1994 restoration, "It's even more breathtaking than I remembered."
December 4, 2013 1:06 pm
Norman Rockwell's 'Saying Grace' Sells For $46 Million At Auction
The sale of the famous painting of a woman and boy bowing their heads in prayer at a table in a bustling restaurant set a record for Rockwell's art.
December 4, 2013 11:14 am
Classical Pranksters Don't Just Play Music: They Play With It
Collective Cadenza, or CDZA for short, is a loose-knit group of musicians — many of them graduates of Juilliard. They've made a name for themselves with funny YouTube videos that have received millions of views. As a result, the group was invited to perform live at the inaugural YouTube Music Awards alongside Eminem, Lady Gaga and Arcade Fire.
December 3, 2013 5:02 pm
For Miami, A New Art Project, Complete With Drama
The Perez Art Museum Miami opens this week, and despite praise for the building's design, the museum faces controversy over its name and has an uphill battle in a city where the art scene is already defined by private collectors.
December 3, 2013 9:56 am
Yuja Wang: Rooted In Diligence, Inspired By Improvisation
The 26-year-old classically trained pianist tackles Rachmaninov's dense and intimidating "Concerto No. 3" in a new recording. The musician says she hears a connection between the challenging piece and improvisations from the late Art Tatum.
December 3, 2013 8:56 am
Designer B Michael On Bringing Color To The Runway
B Michael is one of few top-tier African-American fashion designers. His work has been described as "politely sexy" and is worn by some of Hollywood's top names. Host Michel Martin talks with the veteran designer about his inspirations.
December 2, 2013 10:41 am
Da Vinci's String Organ Must Be Heard To Be Believed
Polish pianist Slawomir Zubrzycki has brought one of Leonardo da Vinci's lesser-known inventions to life. He spent almost four years building the "viola organista" — a unique musical instrument that looks like a piano but sounds like a quartet of string instruments.
December 1, 2013 9:08 pm
Serbian Composer Djuro Zivkovic Wins Grawemeyer Music Prize
Hear On the Guarding of the Heart, an ethereal work for chamber orchestra that earned the award for the 38-year-old Serbian-born composer. He thinks of this music as a discourse about inner transformation.
November 30, 2013 4:08 pm
'Project Unspeakable' Asks The Big Questions
A group of people inspired by a book on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy are creating theater around the idea that his death could have been part of a conspiracy. And the questions don't stop there.
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