Kile Smith

Classical Host

Kile Smith hosts the contemporary American music program Now Is the Time on Sundays at 10 pm on HD-2 and the classical stream, and co-hosts Discoveries from the Fleisher Collection on the first Saturday of every month at 5 pm with Jack Moore. Discoveries takes a fresh look at music in the Fleisher Collection of Orchestral Music at the Free Library of Philadelphia, where Kile was curator for 18 years. He also fills in as an on-air classical host.
 
When he's not producing podcasts of CD reviews for WRTI, writing for the Broad Street Review, teaching music history at Cairn University, music notation at Temple University, or private composition, Kile is busy composing orchestral, choral, chamber, and liturgical works. His music is praised by critics and audiences for its emotional power, direct appeal, and strong voice. Gramophone magazine calls his Vespers "spectacular," possessing "sparkling beauty." The Philadelphia Inquirer describes his music as "breathtaking."
 
He's composed for The Crossing, Piffaro, Orchestra 2001, and the Newburyport Chamber Music Festival. He's also written for David Kim, concertmaster of the Philadelphia Orchestra, Jennifer Montone, Philadelphia's principal horn, and Anne Martindale Williams, principal cello of the Pittsburgh Symphony. His website is kilesmith.com.

The weeds in his ever-widening gardens hint that he needs to get outside more.

Pages

Discoveries from the Fleisher Collection

In Discoveries from the Fleisher Collection, we uncover the unknown, rediscover the little-known, and take a fresh look at some of the remarkable treasures housed in the Edwin A. Fleisher Collection of Orchestral Music in the Free Library of Philadelphia. The Fleisher Collection is the largest lending library of orchestral performance material in the world.

Now is the Time

Contemporary American music is being recorded all the time, and Now is the Time to take a listen and explore the music of American composers today. All types...all styles...listen to contemporary American music every Sunday night with host and composer Kile Smith.

Discoveries from the Fleisher Collection
11:18 am
Sat February 4, 2012

The Music of Igor Stravinsky

Rimsky-Korsakov was not a man given to high praise. So when he wrote the words "Not bad" in his diary about the music of one of his students, that was unusually complimentary. The student was Igor Stravinsky.

Igor Stravinsky (1882-1971). Symphony No. 1 (1907). Scottish National Orchestra, Sir Alexander Gibson. Chandos 8345, CD1, Tr 1-4. 33:14

Igor Stravinsky. Capriccio (1929). Geoffrey Tozer, piano, Orc hestre de la Suisse Romande, Neeme Jarvi. Chandos 9238, Tr 8-10. 16:59

Read more
Discoveries from the Fleisher Collection
4:50 pm
Sat January 7, 2012

The Musical World of Bela Bartok

The Hungarian Fine Arts Commission told Bartok in 1911 that his opera, the only one he would ever write, was no good, not suitable for the stage. With only two singers and no set changes, Bluebeard's Castle just wasn't operatic. He'd later tinker with it some, but the immediate effect of the rejection was that, for four years, he almost completely stopped writing music. Now recognized as one of the greatest composers of the 20th century, Bela Bartok--just entering the height of his powers--went into a composing blackout.

Program:

Read more
Discoveries from the Fleisher Collection
10:11 am
Sat December 3, 2011

Musical Jewels of Jean Sibelius

Gustav Mahler famously remarked that the symphony "must be like the world - it must embrace everything." This explains those disjunct themes delightfully butting against each other in his symphonies. What is often forgotten is that he said this to disagree with Jean Sibelius, who told Mahler that every part of a symphony must have a logical, ruthless interconnection with every other part. Not the world, replies Sibelius: a symphony is like the earth.

Program:

Jean Sibelius (1865-1957)

Read more
News and Views
3:02 pm
Mon November 28, 2011

Yannick Nezet-Seguin Visits WRTI

CD Selections
2:56 pm
Mon November 28, 2011

LISTEN: Kile Smith Recommends...

The Vanishing Nordic Chorale
Musik Ekklesia

It's well past time to listen to historical instruments because they're, well, historical. Or "informed," or "accurate," or whatever word we might use to feel scholastically correct. It's time to listen because they sound beautiful.

Read more
Discoveries from the Fleisher Collection
9:35 am
Sat November 5, 2011

Works by Lili Boulanger, Vivian Fine, and Florence Price

Nadia Boulanger is well known to musicians, being the Parisian teacher of many American composers, most notably Aaron Copland. But her younger sister, Lili, excelled as a composer despite battling sickness most of her life. She eventually succumbed to Crohn's Disease at the much-too-young age of 24.

Program:

Read more
CD Selections
12:31 pm
Sun October 23, 2011

LISTEN: Kile Smith Recommends...

Harvest Home
Fiddler Jay Ungar, Guitarist Molly Mason
Nashville Chamber Orchestra

Read more
Discoveries from the Fleisher Collection
10:00 am
Sat October 1, 2011

The Unique Russian Composer Aleksandr Scriabin

The word "unique" is overused, but Aleksandr Scriabin (1872 - 1915) was one unique composer. Tune in to hear two works of Scriabin that were written only ten years apart, but show the great evolution in his artistic identity - from modernist Russian to universal philosopher. It's the Piano Concerto and The Poem of Ecstasy of Aleksandr Scriabin on the next Discoveries...join us!

You needed a ticket to get into the funeral. All the services and all the tributes and all the writings bear witness that when Aleksandr Scriabin died in 1915, at the age of 43, Russia believed its standard-bearer of art had been taken away.

Ten years earlier, Russia could hardly have cared less.

Read more

Pages