The superstar mezzo-soprano Joyce DiD0nato is one of the world’s most in-demand opera singers. Here she tells WRTI’s Jim Cotter about how her life and career have unfolded since those faraway days at Philadelphia’s Academy of Vocal Arts. She'll give a rare recital in Princeton next week.
Falling off the podium or into the orchestra pit weren’t the occupational hazards befalling French Baroque composer Jean-Baptiste Lully - but his was no less risky. Temple University Professor Steven Zohn, an expert in Baroque music, recounts the conducting move that led to Lully’s death.
Zohn says Lully, who first came to the attention of King Louis XIV as a dancer, profited from his relationship with the monarch - and his power over the musical facets of the royal court became wider and wider.
Hungarian pianist and composer Bela Bartok was born on March 25th in the year 1881. As WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, he is revered by a prominent contemporary composer who is building on Bartok’s legacy.
Tan Dun's Nu Shu: The Secret Songs of Women was premiered in the U.S. by The Philadelphia Orchestra this season, and broadcast on WRTI in December, 2013.
Born in North Carolina in 1926, saxophone player and composer John Coltrane spent over a decade in Philadelphia and then moved to New York. WRTI's Susan Lewis considers the impact of Coltrane, who expanded the boundaries of jazz with a wide range of styles.
After six films made over 30 years, the mythical Philadelphia boxer Rocky Balboa has graduated to Broadway, with Rocky, the Musical. The Philadelphia Inquirer’s David Patrick Stearns says the old underdog is perfectly recognizable on the Winter Garden Theatre stage. But much else has changed.
Born in 1987, and now in his 20s, he's been called, "...the finest pianist of his generation," by the UK Telegraph, who also commented that, ..."[he] shows that he's set to be one of this century's big names." He's Igor Levit. And his latest CD of the last five piano sonatas of Ludwig von Beethoven has been creating quite a stir.
Jonas Kaufmann stars in the title role of Massenet's sublime adaptation of Goethe's revolutionary and tragic romance, opposite Sophie Koch as Charlotte. Rising young maestro Alain Altinoglu conducts.
Werther is "another success for Mr. Kaufmann, currently the most in-demand, versatile and exciting tenor in opera... Mr. Kaufmann is ideal in the role. He sings with dark colorings, melting warmth, virile intensity and powerful top notes." (New York Times)
Sophie Koch, "in her overdue Met debut... brings a plush, strong voice and aching vulnerability to Charlotte... [She] sang with gleaming intensity." (New York Times)
"Alain Altinoglu led a beautifully restrained account of the score, drawing supple, deep-textured and nuanced playing from the Met orchestra." (New York Times)
There's an interesting mix on this month's APPLAUSE with the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia. One of Joseph Haydn's best-loved symphonies, and the premier of Michel Legrand's concerto for harp and orchestra, make up this month's broadcast, hosted by WRTI's Dave Conant, Sunday, March 16, 5 to 6 pm.