Chris Lee/Philadelphia Orchestra

The Philadelphia Orchestra's 2017/2018 Broadcast Season on WRTI 90.1 Begins November 19th!

Join us on Sunday, November 19th at 1 pm as we launch the 2017/2018 Philadelphia Orchestra In Concert broadcast season on WRTI 90.1 with music by Mozart, Tchaikovsky , and the East Coast premiere of an organ work by the Texan Wayne Oquin , conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin.

Read More

A New Mural Rising to Honor John Coltrane

Sep 12, 2017

A 12-year-old mural of John Coltrane near his North Philadelphia house was destroyed in 2014 to make way for real estate development. WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports on a new mural now rising just blocks away, restoring the jazz giant to his old neighborhood.

Jessica Griffin

Early solo viola repertoire was often played by violinists who also played the viola. But as WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, that music today puts violists in the spotlight, including Philadelphia Orchestra Principal Violist Choong-Jin (C.J.) Chang.

The documentary film The Music of Strangers, and a companion CD, Sing Me Home—from Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble— both snared 2017 Grammy nominations, and a Grammy win for the CD for Best World Music Album. WRTI's Susan Lewis has the story on the Silk Road Ensemble, a group that seeks connections across cultures.
 


The intrepid pianist Marc-André Hamelin has a reputation for embracing the toughest, strangest music. His new recording of For Bunita Marcus by Morton Feldman is a fine example. For nearly 75 minutes the music never rises above a whisper and the damper pedal is always pressed down, allowing single notes to ring out into vast, silent spaces.

A Philadelphia Orchestra musician has gained a national audience for a hobby that’s not based on sound. WRTI’s Meridee Duddleston has more.


Credit: Rob Shanahan

The trumpet was the instrument of kings, in court and on the battlefield. Today the orchestral trumpet is an instrument for virtuosos, and used for a variety of purposes. WRTI’s Susan Lewis has more.

Kendrick Scott opened his first set on Tuesday night, at the Jazz Standard in New York City, with a pensive new composition titled "Home." It had a bittersweet melody, a waft of dark harmony, and a beat defined both by chop and flow. "I'm just going to send this out as a meditation for everybody in Houston, Texas right now," said Scott, a drummer, as he introduced the tune.

The votes are in, and we've got this year's list!

WRTI's 2017 Labor Day Weekend Jazz Countdown!

Aug 29, 2017

It's a must-listen event! The top 100 jazz songs that you voted for, broadcast throughout the holiday weekend. Listen starting on Friday, September 1st from 6 to 10 pm, then Saturday from 6 to 9 pm, Sunday from 9 pm to midnight, and Monday starting at 6 pm, and ending when the #1 song is played.

The List:

Paul de Hueck, courtesy the Leonard Bernstein Office, Inc.

The centennial anniversary of Leonard Bernstein is coming up on August 25, 2018, and for the next two years there will be tributes galore—in Philadelphia and throughout the world. WRTI will remember this American icon with special programming, features, and more. Orchestras and museums will commemorate Bernstein with over 1000 events on six continents.

Pages

Opera on WRTI

Saturdays at 1 PM

Wednesdays, noon to 3 pm

Wednesdays, 9 pm to midnight

WRTI Arts Desk

How about a hollowed-out pumpkin as a drum? What about a carrot as a flute? Brussel sprouts rubbed together as squeaky keepers of the beat. WRTI’s Meridee Duddleston learns about vegetables with a life beyond the table. Since its official debut in 2011, the Long Island Vegetable Orchestra has evolved, this year appointing its first music director.


Steak sizzling on a grill at Pat's King of Steaks. A chorus of birdsong at the Philadelphia Zoo. These are just a few of the hundreds of sounds composer Tod Machover is collecting from people who live here for a unique musical profile to be performed by The Philadelphia Orchestra in April.

It's National Alzheimer's Awareness Month. WRTI's Susan Lewis reports on a musical work commissioned by a man to honor his parents who died of the disease. The work for chorus, soloists, and small orchestra surprised even the composer in its power to heal.   

The film I Called Him Morgan tells of the rise and tragic fall of trumpeter Lee Morgan, who grew up in Philadelphia.  WRTI’s Susan Lewis talked with sax master Odean Pope about his memories of Morgan, who in his short life made a long-lasting contribution.

In correspondence with a patron, Tchaikovsky confessed he was grappling with the idea of fate in his Symphony No. 4. As WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, the composer tried to make sense of his world with music that still resonates today. Listen to her conversation with Philadelphia Orchestra Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin.

More Arts Desk Stories