Jan Regan/Philadelphia Orchestra

The Philadelphia Orchestra's 2017 Beijing Concert on WRTI! Beethoven's 9th, July 2, 1 PM

On the stage of China's National Centre for the Performing Arts in Beijing—just a month ago—Yannick Nézet-Séguin , stood before his Philadelphia Orchestra and spoke to an audience that included sponsors, patrons, musicians, diplomats, Chinese government officials and business leaders, as well as delegations from Philadelphia and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

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The Jazz Sanctuary is an organization that takes jazz into houses of worship and other nontraditional venues. As WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, founder Alan Segal says jazz and the spiritual community drove his recovery from a life-threatening crisis.

Elgar dedicated his second “Pomp and Circumstance” march to him. Sibelius honored him with a whole symphony. But the person who inspired these accolades is not all that well known.

Johannes Brahms Mended a Friendship with this Music

May 12, 2017

Can making music together heal a fractured friendship? Johannes Brahms reached out to his friend Joseph Joachim in the way he knew best. WRTI’s Susan Lewis talks with violinist Joshua Bell to find out the details.

There's a musical asterisk on French president-elect Emmanuel Macron's bio: He is an avid amateur pianist. It's a facet of his life occasionally noted in passing, as in this piece from the French radio network Europe 1 titled "The Things You Don't Yet Know About Emmanuel Macron." Along with mentioning his abiding fondness for karaoke, Europe 1 reported that he studied piano for 10 years at the music conservatory in Amiens, where he won third prize.

Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem is unusual—in form, in scope, and in message. As WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, the Latin Mass for chorus and orchestra is interspersed by English poetry about the brutality of war.

For professional musicians, the instrument on which they play is more than just a tool of the trade. It can also be a muse, a partner and a voice.

Min Kym started playing the violin at age 6 and won her first competition at 11. Now, the former child prodigy is the author of a new book: Gone: A Girl, A Violin, A Life Unstrung, in which she shares her story of finding her perfect partner — only to have it stolen away.

One hundred years ago, 18-year-old Francis Poulenc was looking for a composition teacher, and being recommended by the pianist Ricardo Viñes to Maurice Ravel, went to meet him, scores in hand. Ravel was already well-known, having composed much of the music for which he is famous today.

Twentieth-century Austrian composer Alban Berg dedicated his Violin Concerto to the memory of the 18-year-old daughter of a friend. As WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, the work evokes emotion not typically associated with the 12-tone style.


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Wednesdays, noon to 3 pm

WRTI Presents: Grover Washington, Jr. Reunion Concert, July 18th, 7:30 pm

Featuring Gerald Albright, Najee, and Jean Carn at
Temple Performing Arts Center

Wednesdays, 9 pm to midnight

WRTI Arts Desk

When the Philadelphia Orchestra commissioned Jonathan Leshnoff to write a concerto for principal clarinetist Ricardo Morales, the composer realized a connection between the clarinet and...the Hebrew alphabet. WRTI's Debra Lew Harder explains.


Pianist Lara Downes' Vision of the American Dream

Jun 26, 2017

The hope in the "American Dream" is heard in America Again, the new CD by pianist Lara Downes. WRTI’s Susan Lewis has the story.

In his early twenties, Argentinian composer Alberto Ginastera (1916-1983) won the title "Argentina's Great Musical Hope" with works such as the ballet score Estancia, and popular piano pieces like Danzas argentinas, which strongly evoke the rhythm and flair of the folk music of Argentina.

The second movement of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7—the Allegretto—has captivated listeners since the symphony’s 1813 premiere, when it was so popular that the orchestra used it as an encore. WRTI’s Susan Lewis has more on why this particular movement continues to engages us.

The summer jazz festival season is about to start. Blockbuster performances at the “Big Three” longest-running summer jazz fests still engender re-makes and recordings. These historic performances live on as benchmarks. Now, starting with the Montreux Jazz Festival — founded in 1967 — WRTI examines highlights from Montreux, Newport, and Monterey.

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