An unusual quartet of tenor saxophones delves into the connections between body, breath, sound and creation with a fierce and unyielding spirit.
Hear the self-described "accidental brass quartet" put a new spin on an old British ballad in an evocative arrangement by Nico Muhly and Sam Amidon.
One thousand singers gathered Saturday to perform a new work by Pulitzer winner David Lang. Reporter Jeff Lunden was one of them.
Percussionist Miles Salerni repeatedly auditioned to be a Fellow at the Boston Symphony Orchestra's summer home, but was rejected. So he found another way in.
Opera geeks always surge with excitement when a favorite singer releases a new album. Hear a heart-rending sneak preview from Verismo , from the acclaimed Russian soprano.
A Manhattan socialite, who sold out Carnegie Hall in 1944 despite having a very dodgy voice, inspired a new movie starring Meryl Streep — and aided generations of actual singers.
American-made violins are often regarded as inferior to European ones, but guitarist David Bromberg knows their value. So does the Library of Congress, which is acquiring his impressive collection.
After 25 years directing the contemporary music festival in California, Marin Alsop bids farewell with Lola Montez Does the Spider Dance , a new piece composed for her by John Adams.
The pianist and composer John Field certainly didn’t let the grass grow under his feet. He was born in Dublin, spent time in Bath and London, performed before Haydn, sustained a long European association with Clementi, then took Russian residency for a quarter of a century before spending his final years battling the illness that ultimately defeated him. Field’s immediately attractive music influenced such luminaries as Chopin and Liszt. Brimming with elegance, it stands endless repetition, as evidenced in this latest podcast by Raymond Bisha.
View album details of John Field’s Piano Concerto Nos. 2 and 7 / Piano Sonata No. 4 at naxos.com
Catalogue No.: 8.573262
Raymond Bisha presents a new recording of works for violin and orchestra by four Polish composers, who may not all be household names, but collectively they’re worth the warmest of welcomes to anyone’s CD collection. Each composer had more than one string to his or her bow, so to speak, which may account for the compelling impact each work makes on the ear: Grażyna Bacewicz and Michał Spisak were also outstanding violinists, Alexandre Tansman a virtuoso pianist, and Andrzej Panufnik a renowned conductor. The soloist, also Polish and a multi-competition winner, is Piotr Plawner.
View album details of Polish Violin Concertos at naxos.com
Catalogue No.: 8.573496
Raymond Bisha introduces a new release of three highly contrasted orchestral works, unified by the quintessentially American styles of the three composers. The optimism of Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring and the sparkling colour synesthesia of Michael Torke’s Bright Blue Music stand in stark contrast to John Corigliano’s Symphony No. 1. The latter is an intensely moving musical memorial to friends who lost their lives in the Aids epidemic of the 1980s and 1990s. The work moves from spikes of insanity punctuating Aids dementia, through stretches of poignant nostalgia to a mournful, yet peaceful conclusion. America’s National Orchestral Institute Philharmonic makes its debut for Naxos under the direction of David Alan Miller.
View album details of John Corigliano’s Symphony No. 1 at naxos.com
Catalogue No.: 8.559782
The Chilean musician José Luis Dominguez has taken his experience of conducting ballet and applied it to the composing of his energised score for the ballet The Legend of Joaquin Murieta. The music glitters in sync with its California Gold Rush setting. Shades of Zorro permeate. Rooted in the great tradition of symphonic film music, bad guys, good guys, brawling battles, the bustle of mid-19th century settlements and a thread of love colour this ‘action ballet’ score from first to last. Raymond Bisha is your swashbuckling guide to this new Naxos release.
View album details of José Luis Domínguez’s The Legend of Joaquín Murieta (Ballet) at naxos.com
Catalogue No.: 8.573515-16
The last three of Mozart’s five violin concertos have always been popular with recording artists, but there is always plenty more to be discovered in repertoire of such infinite variety. As soloist Henning Kraggerud has observed, “the true sign of a masterpiece must lie in the number of possible interpretations inherent in it.” Raymond Bisha presents Kraggerud’s account of these three masterpieces, all written in 1775 when Mozart was only 19 years old. Listen in to hear how the Norwegian’s engagement and passion illuminate a Viennese genius.
View album details of Mozart’s Violin Concertos Nos. 3, 4 and 5 at naxos.com
Catalogue No.: 8.573513
Join Raymond Bisha in a podcast of artistic discovery as he unveils yet another American classic—Randall Thompson’s Requiem. Reckoned by many to be his most ambitious work, the composer himself considered it to be his masterpiece, yet it has languished for decades on the periphery of the choral performance repertoire. This world première recording from Naxos serves notice that the work’s rehabilitation is overdue, with an outstanding performance by the Philadelphia Singers directed by David Hayes setting the bar high.
View album details of Randall Thompson’s Requiem at naxos.com
Catalogue No.: 8.559789
Although John Rutter’s musical upbringing was quintessentially British, the composer’s works today enjoy popularity on a transnational scale, not least his choral settings. Raymond Bisha gives both musical and historical context to this month’s release of Rutter’s Psalmfest: from the work’s textual inspiration to its place within the composer’s oeuvre, and the performers’ musical stewardship of a unique building with a venerable history.
View album details of John Rutter’s Psalmfest at naxos.com
Catalogue No.: 8.573394
The 1935 classic Mexican film Redes continues our series of early editions, for which the music scores have been restored and recorded in performances by the PostClassical Ensemble. This week’s podcast introduces the world première recording of the complete score by Silvestre Revueltas, which accompanies a restored print of the film, released this month on DVD. Redes represents a towering meeting of minds in terms of direction, cinematography and music. Raymond Bisha sets the film in the context of Mexico’s social revolution and nascent film industry, highlighting the score’s transcendent and epic qualities.
View album details of Silvestre Revuelta’s Redes at naxos.com
Catalogue No.: 2.110372
Although it makes an immediate connection on a musical level, Rimsky-Korsakov’s First Symphony had a provenance to which few of us can easily relate today. Russia’s 19th-century societal hierarchy classed the young composer just ahead of peasantry, but Rimsky-Korsakov successfully managed to juggle his early leanings for both music and the Russian Navy, with a little help from his illustrious teacher, Mily Balakirev. Raymond Bisha presents Rimsky-Korsakov’s First and Third Symphonies.
View album details of Rimsky-Korsakov’s Symphonies Nos. 1 and 3 at naxos.com
Catalogue No.: 8.573581
Raymond Bisha puts Victor Herbert’s underperformed cello concertos under the spotlight in this week’s podcast. The two works form just a small part of the substantial legacy the Irish-American composer left behind, following his death in 1924. Herbert was feted in his time for his 40-plus operettas that enlivened Broadway and, as a founding member of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, he’s the object of gratitude for many of today’s composers whose rights and benefits are protected by the foundations he helped to lay. The fact that Herbert’s Second Cello Concerto was the inspiration for Dvořák’s great B minor Cello Concerto in itself reinforces the assertion that his music deserves to be less lost in the sands of time.
View album details of Victor Herbert’s Cello Concertos Nos. 1 and 2 at naxos.com
Catalogue No.: 8.573517
With Lew Smoley, and Maria Noriega Rachwal
Listening Guide The Works shchedrin The Seagull: Act 2 Preludio XIV Preludio XV Preludio XVI Preludio XVII Interludio Preludio XVIII Preludio XIX Preludio XX Preludio XXI Preludio XXII Preludio XXIII Preludio XXIV Postludio Constant Nana Symphony I – La Rencontre II – La Bourse III – Pas De Deux IV – Quadrilles V – A […]
With Lew Smoley, and Benjamin Zander
Listening Guide The Works Gerhard Dances From Don Quixote Debussy Fall Of The House Of Usher Koechlin Le Buisson Ardent (Jean Christophe) Hermann Moby Dick Chorus: And God Created Whales Ishmael: At Last Anchor Was Up Ahab: Yonder, By The Everrimming Goblet’s Rim Chorus: Hist, Let’s Have a Jig Ishmael: It Was A Clear Steel-Blue […]
Listening Guide The Works MacKenzie Cricket and the Hearth Overture Constant Cyrano De Bergerac Symphonic Suite Overture Tirade Des Nez The Tower of Nesle March of the Gascoyne Cadets Roxanne’s Balcony The Siege of Arras Gazette and Cyrano’s Death Baker Washington Square: Excerpts In The House, and Catherine Townsend The Betrothal, and the Study The […]
For several decades we have been subjected to claims that the purported absence of young people from classical music audiences portends the extinction of live performances, if not of the genre itself. To remedy such doomsday pronouncements, a focus on youth took hold and young performers were pressed (not unwillingly) into service, in positions sometimes […]
With Lew Smoley, and Jose Serebrier
With Lew Smoley & Howard Nevison
These middle schoolers have been working after school for six months building their giant human-powered brain sculpture. Will their ideas hold up or come crashing down?
Get a free MP3 of Johann Strauss II - Die Fledermaus: Overture, performed by Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra.
Since Thierry Fischer accepted the full-time post of music director in 2011, the Utah Symphony has commissioned at least six new works, three of which appear on its new recording, 'Dawn to Dust.' Learn more about the new recording, and enter for a chance to own a copy of the CD.
One of Hollywood's most lauded director-composer collaborations was that between David Lean and Maurice Jarre for 1984's 'A Passage to India'. This week on Flicks in Five, we'll hear Jarre conducting his own music for the film.
Ahead of Wednesday's live broadcast of the Minnesota Orchestra's concert at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, MPR Director of Broadcast Operations Josh Kubasta explains how a live transatlantic broadcast comes together -- bringing the live music from the Netherlands right to your ears.
Get a free MP3 of Edward MacDowell - To a Wild Rose, performed by James Barbagallo, piano.
On Wednesday at 1 p.m. Central, hear the Minnesota Orchestra perform live in the gorgeous acoustic of the world's most storied hall, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam.
How do you pedal a 200-pound pink brain -- made of rubber, foam and steel -- up 45-degree hills, through thick mud and water without breaking? These middle schoolers have eight months to figure it out.
Prince's former home and studio in Chanhassen will open as a museum and be run by a firm with ties to Elvis Presley's Graceland mansion. Here's how to get tickets.
An official close to the investigation of Prince's death has told the Associated Press that investigators found counterfeit drugs including synthetic opioids in the musician's home, and officials say the risky drugs are becoming more common.