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. She is the proud mother of a son, an international businessman, and a daughter, a professional chef.

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

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Crossover
6:00 am
Sat October 26, 2013

Genre Bender: Guitarist Jason Vieaux

Guitarist Jason Vieaux is performing at the Trinity Center for Urban Life near Rittenhouse Square on November 2nd.

Virtuoso classical guitarist Jason Vieaux tends to go anywhere his mind can take him. From J.S. Bach to Issac Albeniz, to David Ludwig to Astor Piazaolla, to Pat Metheny to Duke Ellington, it's hard to pin Jason Vieaux down. But, perhaps, that's his plan.

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Crossover
8:06 am
Sat October 19, 2013

Tango Fire: Burning Passion, Exquisitely Alluring

Tango Fire

What's new? Tango Fire...an ensemble that has taken the world by storm. Five couples and four musicians who have danced their way into the soul of tango lovers, far and wide.

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Crossover
2:24 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

Grounded, Yet Flying High: Conductor Rossen Milanov

Rossen Milanov

Rossen Milanov on Crossover w/Jill Pasternak, October 12, 2013

Rossen Milanov is a busy man of the world.  The miles he racks up, both driving and flying, are great.  Just look at his schedule from now through the first week in December: the Colorado Symphony in Denver, the Fort Worth Symphony in Texas, the Princeton Symphony in New Jersey, the Latvian National Symphony in Latvia, the Orchesta Sinfonica del Principado de Asturias in Spain, the Aalborg Symphony in Denmark, and finally back home to lead Camden's Symphony in C.  It's almost as though Alec Baldwin is about to come up and ask him, "What's in your wallet?"

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Crossover
12:59 pm
Fri October 4, 2013

Violinist Maria Bachmann: French Fantasy

Violinist Maria Bachmann's new CD is FRENCH FANTASY

Violinist Maria Bachmann with Jill Pasternak on Crossover, Saturday, March 23, 2013

This week on Crossover, it's a repeat broadcast of  Jill Pasternak's recent interview with violin virtuoso Maria Bachmann. A student of Ivan Galamian and Szymon Goldberg at Philadelphia's Curtis Institute of Music, she was awarded the school's Fritz Kreisler Prize for outstanding graduating violinist. Bachmann made her professional debut in New York in 1987 after placing first in the Fritz Kreisler International Violin Competition in Vienna. She has since established herself as a leading concert and recital hall artist worldwide.

Bachmann is perhaps best-known for her performances of new music by George Rochberg, Leon  Kirchner, Albert Glinsky and Paul Moravec. Her debut recording on BMG, released in 1993, featured works from the 20th century, accompanied by award-winning pianist Jon Klibonoff. But her musical interests are wider than just new music.  Another BMG release of the Beethoven and Mendelssohn violin concertos was very well received.    

In 2010, she gave the world premiere performance of Moravec's Violin Concerto at the Kimmel Center with Philly's Orchestra 2001. She repeated that performance this past March with South Jersey's Symphony in C, under Rossen Milanov, which was recently broadcast on WRTI.  We'll hear an excerpt from that performance on this show. Moravec has written fourteen solo and chamber works specifically for Bachmann.    

Bachmann is also known for her chamber music performances, having appeared in concert and on recordings with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. She founded the Bachmann-Klibonoff-Fridman Piano Trio in 1993, which for a time was the resident ensemble at WQXR Radio in New York. In 2001, she formed Trio Solisti, comprised of Bachmann, Klibonoff, and cellist Alexis Gerlach. Bachmann is also artistic director of the Telluride Music Festival, for which Trio Solisti is the founding ensemble.  

Bachmann performs on a 1782 violin by Nicolo Gagliano.  

We'll hear the aforementioned excerpt of the Moravec violin concerto on the show, plus music from her new Bridge release called, French Fantasy. Bachmann is accompanied by pianist Adam Neiman on the disc, performing works of Debussey, Franck, and Saint-Saens.  

Listen for Jill's conversation with violin virtuoso Maria Bachmann on Crossover, Saturday morning, March 23rd at 11:30 am on WRTI-FM, with an encore the following Friday evening at 7 pm on HD-2 and the All-Classical web stream at wrti.org.

Crossover
7:29 am
Sat September 28, 2013

Conductor Stephen Gunzenhouser: Classical Music's Tour Guide

The internationally known conductor Stephen Gunzenhouser, music director of the Lancaster Symphony Orchestra, considers himself a musical tour guide of sorts. Makes sense when you look at his discography and see just how many recordings he's made with orchestras and ensembles worldwide.  The Capella Istropolitana, the Slovak Philharmonic, the National Orchestra of Argentina, the Berlin Symphony Orchestra, the National Symphony of Ireland, the Polish National Radio Symphony, the Gulbenkian Orchestra, the Bogota Philharmonic, and the list goes on and on.  

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Crossover
7:21 am
Sat September 21, 2013

Violinist Nicola Benedetti: Another Film Music CD? Yes...And No!

Violinist Nicola Benedetti's latest CD on the Decca label is "The Silver Violin."  The CD contains Ms. Benedetti's take on music used in film by Korngold, Shostakovich, Marianelli, Shore, Mahler and more.

The reaction upon first seeing the CD when it arrived at the station: "Yawn...OK...another film music disc." But! When the disc actually made it into the CD player, the scales fell from both the eyes and the ears, and all one could say was, "Wow."  We have no doubt you'll have the same final reaction we did. "Wow."

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WRTI 60th Anniversary Limited-Edition CDs
11:48 am
Wed September 18, 2013

60th Anniversary Classical CD Highlight: Beethoven, Für Elise

from Ludwig van Beethoven: Für Elise

Ludwig van Beethoven's Bagatelle in A minor, "Für Elise," performed by Balazs Szokolay, is featured on CD 1 in the WRTI 60th Anniversary Classical 3-CD set.

If you’ve ever taken piano lessons, then Beethoven’s Bagatelle in A minor is no stranger to you. The instantly recognizable tune is a must for all beginning piano students, and the staying power of this lovely work is legendary. Listen to it here performed by Balazs Szokolay. There! Of course you know that one. Told you so.

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WRTI 60th Anniversary Limited-Edition CDs
11:08 pm
Mon September 9, 2013

60th Anniversary Classical CD Highlight: Copland, Appalachian Spring

from Aaron Copland: Appalachian Spring

Aaron Copland's Appalachian Spring, performed by the Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra, Stephen Gunzenhauser conducting, is featured on CD 3 in the WRTI 60th Anniversary Classical 3-CD set.

Aaron Copland is considered by many to be the dean of American composers. One may argue that he created a “sound” that embodies the spirit of the American dream—a vision of a vast and different country where immigrants came to settle and build a life in a new world. This work celebrates the Appalachian mountain regions—the lowlands of the Lebanon, Cumberland, East Tennessee, and Shenandoah valleys.

A single clarinet opens the work with a simple melody and is joined by flute and strings signaling the beauty and simplicity of nature and the earth’s awakening from a harsh winter to a glorious spring. A brash orchestral segment initiates the feeling of “country music” and the simplicity once again of the melodies brought by the immigrants from their native English, Scottish, and German backgrounds.

The highlight of the work is the Shaker melody “’Tis the gift to be simple, ’tis the gift to be free,” undoubtedly the cornerstone of the piece as it is developed and enlarged in all its glory. Written as a ballet for the great Martha Graham in 1944, it won the Pulitzer Prize for music in 1945.

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WRTI 60th Anniversary Limited-Edition CDs
4:41 pm
Mon September 9, 2013

60th Anniversary Classical CD Highlight: Beethoven, Romance No. 2 in F

Takako Nishizaki

from Beethoven: Romance in F

Ludwig van Beethoven's Romance No. 2 in F Major, Op.50, performed by Takako Nishizaki, violin, with Kenneth Jean conducting the Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra, is featured on CD 1 in the WRTI 60th Anniversary Classical 3-CD set.

This is the second of a pair of works written for solo violin and orchestra. A favorite with concert artists, it is pensive and beautifully melodic, highlighting the sonic qualities of the violin at its best and allowing the soloists a wide range of emotional options.

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Crossover
6:52 am
Sat September 7, 2013

Itzhak Perlman's Eternally Beautiful Music For The Soul

The distinguished violinist Itzhak Perlman offers a glimpse into the classical Jewish Cantorial repertoire, and beloved liturgical and traditional works in new arrangements backed by chamber orchestra and Klezmer musicians. Mr. Perlman is joined by his dear friend and colleague, Cantor Yitzchak Meir Helfgot.

While rooted in the Cantorial-liturgical tradition of Jewish music, the ten tracks on Eternal Echoes: Songs And Dances For the Soul encompass a wide range of sonic modes and musical moods. The CD has just the right mixture of happy and sad, and laughter through tears.

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