Jill Pasternak

Classical Host

Jill joined WRTI in 1997 after working at the former WFLN for ten years. Her background is impressive: she's a professional harpist, a graduate of The Juilliard School of Music, and a former Fulbright Scholar.

As staff harpist at Radio City Music Hall, and with the City Center Ballet in New York, Jill performed with numerous symphonic and chamber ensembles in recordings, on radio, and on Broadway. She also worked for the Rockefeller Foundation developing the New World Records label, and was an assistant editor for Stereo Review magazine and Nonesuch Records. Her work as a writer and producer of training videos led Jill to earn a graduate degree in public media and also to start hosting at classical radio stations including WMHT-FM in Schenectady, N.Y., and WQXR in New York City.

Along with varied speaking engagements, Jill continues to "harp" on all things musical in the Delaware Valley.

Jill can be heard weekdays from 2 to 6 pm, and on Crossover on Saturdays from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm. 

Ways To Connect

This past January 27th would have been Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's 259th birthday. To celebrate, virtuoso violinist and Crossover favorite, Rachel Barton Pine, released a CD of his five violin concertos.

  This past season, the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia celebrated its 50th anniversary. Started as the Concerto Soloists in 1964, by then-Music Director Marc Mostovoy as a way for audiences to hear Baroque and Classical chamber works, and to provide performance opportunities for young professional musicians emerging from the Curtis Institute of Music and other regional training programs, the ensemble's reputation has only grown stronger over the years.

British pianist Peter Donohoe has been a guest soloist with Philadelphia's Renaissance, Baroque and Classical chamber ensemble, Vox Ama Deus, for several years - performing in one concert per season. Valentin Radu, music director of the ensemble, told us that audiences have loved Donohoe's performances so much, that he asked him to perform in two concerts this season.

When you come across someone described as "versatile," you often find they can certainly do a lot of different things, but each only adequately. Pianist Jonathan Miles Freeman is not one of those people. Freeman does everything, and he does it excellently.

Those of a certain age remember the old Certs breath mint commercial, "It's TWO, TWO, TWO mints in one!"  This week on Crossover, it's TWO, TWO, TWO great musicians in one! Grammy-nominated harpist Yolanda Kondonassis and Grammy-winning guitarist Jason Vieaux are duet partners on their new CD, Together

A harp and a guitar - two plucked instruments played "together" by their virtuoso owners? This is quite a unique duo of instruments that wouldn't normally share the stage. But...maybe it's time they did!

When flutist Robert Stallman speaks about music, one can't help but be drawn in by his knowledge and passion for excellence in all aspects of his work.

Several years ago, Stallman and his wife Hannah started the Bogner's Cafe record label, mainly to distribute Robert's performances, especially his flute transcriptions of music not intended for the flute.  

His latest release is Cosi fan Flauti: Mozart for Flute & Orchestra, the title being an obvious "transcription" itself of the famous Mozart opera title, Cosi fan tutte.

Lisa-Marie Mazzucco

Simone Dinnerstein's latest CD Broadway-Lafayette is named after the subway stop in New York City. But, as Dinnerstein explains in her most recent visit to Crossover, there is an ulterior motive at play in the title - the relationship of America and France, dating back to the American Revolution, when the Marquis de Lafayette helped American colonists send the British back across the Atlantic licking their wounds.  And there is yet another undercurrent in the theme of American and French relationships - that of the composers on the recording.

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.

Heroic, indeed.  So much so, that his first CD is called, Héroïque.  Sure, the title refers to the music on tenor Bryan Hymel's freshman solo recording, a portrayal of the heroic figures of French grand opera. But to accurately portray those characters, it doesn't hurt to have an heroic voice.

American Masters is the title of a recently released CD, referring to the composers and works that appear on the disc.  But the term can just as easily be applied to the performer - violinist Anne Akiko Meyers.

Anne is no stranger to Crossover listeners, and we're lucky to be able to speak with her whenever something new is on her horizon, which winds up being quite frequently. This time around, she introduces us to one of today's bright lights in the composing world, Mason Bates.

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