Saturday, 11:30 am to 12:30 pm

Join Jill Pasternak every Saturday for her weekly interview show spotlighting notable music and musicians from the classical and jazz worlds - and the periphery as well!  Totally un-scripted and spontaneous, Crossover sounds like nothing else on the dial -- more like friends chatting over coffee than a broadcast interview.

Composer ID: 


November 09, 2013

11:30 AM
Sonata da camera
Artist : David Grunschlag
Album : WNYC New York, Historic recording, 1/1949
Composer : Pietro Locatelli
Label :
11:35 AM
Deep Sorrow
Artist : David Grunschlag
Album : WNYC New York, Historic recording, 1/1949
Composer : Ernest Bloch
Label :
11:40 AM
Violin Concerto
Artist : Itzhak Perlman
Album : Castelnuovo-Tedesco, Ben-Haim: Violin Concertos / Perlman
Composer : Paul Ben-Haim
Catalog : 54296
Label : Emi Classics
12:00 PM
St. Louis Blues
Artist : Bessie Smith
Album : Rough Guide To Bessie Smith
Composer : W. C. Handy
Label : World Music Network
12:15 PM
Dirty No-Gooder’s Blues
Artist : Bessie Smith
Album : Rough Guide To Bessie Smith
Composer : Bessie Smith
Label : World Music Network
12:25 PM
Down Hearted Blues
Artist : Bessie Smith
Album : Rough Guide To Bessie Smith
Composer : Bessie Smith
Label : World Music Network


4:29 pm
Fri July 19, 2013

Guitarist David Cohen: Healing And Helping Through Music

Guitarist David Cohen with Jill Pasternak, July, 2013

David Cohen speaks with Jill Pasternak on Crossover, July 20, 2013

This week we feature a musician who has gone well beyond his role as an entertainer to become an active member of humanitarian causes he believes in. In an effort to fight hunger, David Cohen co-founded the Ocean Grove Music Arts Festival from which all proceeds go directly to the Food Bank of Monmouth and Ocean Counties in New Jersey.  

He also initiated the website to promote classical music in the area, and established with the same goal in targeting guitar players in Philadelphia.  

His newest album David Cohen: Guitar pays homage to his late wife, Tatyana, who recently lost her battle against ovarian cancer.  The CD is an intimate celebration of love and life and the brave battle she and so many other women have fought.  A portion of the proceeds of the album will support the Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia, where David assists in the development and implementation of patient and family- centered care philosophy and practices. Saturday, July 20, 11:30 am to 12 noon.

2:49 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

Diva DiDonato: The Wow Factor

David Zobel

Jill Pasternak speaks with Joyce DiDonato on Crossover, November 2012

Mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato, the brightest new light on the operatic horizon, graces us with her new release, Drama Queens, on the Virgin classics label. Her interpretation of works by Baroque composers such as Orlandini, Handel, and Monteverdi knocks your socks off. And in a blazing red silk gown, she breathes life into her ancient "heroines" - jealousy, tenderness, and passion - unchanging in the scheme of life.  Saturday, July 6, 11:30 am to 12:30 pm on Crossover with host Jill Pasternak.

4:44 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

Wanamaker Organ Day LIVE On WRTI: June 29, 11:30 AM

Join us for a special edition of Crossover on Saturday, June 29th, 11:30 am to 12:30 pm - broadcast live from this year's Wanamaker Organ Day at Macy's Center City - the free, day-long musical extravaganza in celebration of the world's largest pipe organ.

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9:07 pm
Fri June 21, 2013

The Reluctant Trailblazer: Philadelphia Orchestra Harpist Edna Phillips

Emil Rhodes, Family Collection

Mary Sue Welsh discusses the life and career of Edna Phillips on Crossover, June 22nd, 2013.

Harpist Edna Phillips was only 23 when she joined The Philadelphia Orchestra under Leopold Stokowski in 1930. The story goes that the orchestra was looking for a second chair harpist, and Phillips' teacher at Curtis, Carlos Salzedo, insisted that she audition.

She was somewhat reluctant.  After all, she'd only been playing the harp for five years, coming to the instrument late in life after spending time with the piano.  But sometimes all it takes is being in the right place at the right time.

After her audition, Stokowski revealed that the orchestra's principal harpist had been badly injured and would not be returning.  He wanted Phillips to fill the chair.  This would make her not only the first woman in The Philadelphia Orchestra, but the first woman to be a principal player in ANY American orchestra.

In Phillips' later years, she was chair of the Bach Festival of Philadelphia where she hired Mary Sue Welsh, a retired editor of children's books. The two would become close friends.  At one point, Phillips suggested to Welsh that they work together on a memoir of her life as a harpist. But, when Phillips passed on in 2003, Welsh tossed it aside.  

Eventually, Welsh returned to the idea, and started working on a Phillips biography, talking to the harpist's family, friends, and co-workers, and using archival material.  Recently published, the book is called, One Woman in a Hundred, and is part of the University of Illinois Press' "Music in American Life" series.

Listen for Jill Pasternak's conversation with author Mary Sue Welsh on the life and times of Edna Phillips, and hear excerpts from the author's taped conversations with the harpist, along with music performed by her, on Crossover, Saturday, June 22nd at 11:30 am on WRTI-FM and the All-Classical stream at, with an encore the following Friday evening at 7 pm on HD-2 and the All-Classical stream.

3:57 pm
Fri June 7, 2013

Here Comes the Judge: Organist Paul Jacobs

Organist Paul Jacobs

A good friend of WRTI returns this week. Acclaimed organ virtuoso Paul Jacobs stops by to tell us about the International Organ Competition at Longwood Gardens June 18th through 22nd. He'll be one of five judges deciding the fate of ten young organists who've been vetted, from hundreds of entries, to move on to the preliminaries. Only five will make it to the finals to compete for the $40,000 Pierre S. DuPont First Prize.

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Conrad Tao on Crossover
8:20 am
Sun June 2, 2013

Crossing Boundaries from Past to Future: Pianist Conrad Tao on Crossover

Conrad Tao, pianist
Ruimin Wang

He's only 18 years old, but has experience way beyond his years.  He's a virtuoso pianist, a composer and an accomplished violinist.  And now he's a music festival founder and curator.  He's Conrad Tao.  As comfortable with Ravel and Rachmaninoff as with Reich, Eno and Meredith Monk, it seems he can do anything he wants to, and do it with excellence.  Did we say he's only 18?

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8:43 am
Sat May 18, 2013

Le Grand Tango: A World Apart!

The Third Annual Philadelphia Tango Festival, May 24 to 27, 2013, in Northern Liberties section of Philadelphia

Tango is the dance of love, of passion, and of a world that transports you to another plane. So say the tango lovers and novices who have re-discovered this emotional and passionate dance expression.

Join Jill for a conversation with Meredith Klein, director of the the Philadelphia Argentine Dance School, and organizer of the Third Annual Philadelphia International Tango Festival, which takes place from May 24th through May 27th. Twenty-two workshops with world-renowned dancers/teachers, five milongas (social dances) and outstanding performers will teach, perform, and work with those who live and breathe tango and those who have had no prior exposure or experience to it.

Tango, unlike other dances, has a mystique surrounding it that is deeply felt and absorbed by the participant, and is also a new world for the novice to discover. Internationally renowned couples, directly from Buenos Aires, Argentina, Javier Antar & Kara Wenham and Guillermo Cerneaz and Marina Kenny will teach workshops for intermediate and advanced dancers and perform at nightly social dances. Tangueros from around the United States are planning to travel to Philadelphia to study with these celebrated masters.

Most events will take place in the upstairs ballroom of the beautiful RUBA Club in Northern Liberties (414 Green Street, Philadelphia), which is reminiscent of some of the elegant and sometimes edgy tango spaces in Buenos Aires. A therapeutic yoga class is available daily taught by Argentine yogi and tango aficionada Monica Moya. More information here.

9:03 am
Sat April 6, 2013

Drama And Comedy On Crossover: Huberman's List And Singing Pirates

Violinist Bronislaw Huberman

We've all seen the "Drama And Comedy" masks meant to depict the full range of emotions that entertainment causes us to feel.  This week's Crossover could certainly use those masks as a trademark.

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8:06 am
Sat March 30, 2013

Singing Her Heart Out: Vocalist Dianne Reeves on Crossover

There are a ton of great jazz vocalists in the world, but there's only one Dianne Reeves. Since age 11, she's been singing her heart out, garnering three Grammy awards for three consecutive CDs - the only vocal recording artist in any category to do that. And to top that off, she won yet another Grammy for her work on the soundtrack for George Clooney's 2005 film, Good Night and Good Luck.

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6:43 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

Piano Virtuoso Emanuel Ax on Crossover

Pianist Emanuel Ax

Pianist Emanuel Ax on Crossover with Jill Pasternak, March 17, 2013

This week's Crossover guest is one of the most well-known pianists in classical music - Emanuel Ax.  Mr. Ax is a multiple Grammy winner in both solo and chamber performances, and has enjoyed a career that has spanned over four decades.

Emanuel Ax was born in Lviv in western Ukraine in the summer of 1948, and raised in Poland.  His first piano teacher was his father, who started him on the keyboard at age 6.  At 7, he started official studies at the Miodowa School in Warsaw, eventually winding up in Winnipeg, in Manitoba, Canada when the family moved there two years later.  There he studied piano in school, and as a member of the Junior Music Club of Winnipeg.

In 1961, the family moved once again to New York City, where Mr. Ax began studies at Juilliard under Mieczyslaw Munz, eventually winning the Young Artists Award in 1973.  He came to prominence in 1974, after winning the first Arthur Rubenstein International Piano Competition in Tel Aviv.  He followed that in 1975 with the Michaels Award for Young Artists, and the Avery Fisher Prize in 1979.  From there, he has embarked on a career that has taken him around the world, performing solo, and with some of the most prominent chamber ensembles and orchestras in classical music.

Since 1973, Mr. Ax has been Yo-Yo Ma's main duo recital partner.  He also formed a quartet with Ma, Jaime Laredo and Issac Stern, releasing several CD's for Sony/CBS before Stern's death in 2001 adjourned the ensemble.

Emanuel Ax's latest CD is called, "Variations: Haydn, Beethoven and Schumann," on the Sony Classics label.  The pianist points out that each of these sets of Variations is unusual, “each revolutionary in its own way.” He has also discovered that they go very well together in a concert program. Now, surely to the worldwide delight of fans of virtuoso classical piano performance, he presents them together on a recording as well.  In the world of the pianist, says Mr. Ax, “we’re so centered on the sonata style. What’s nice sometimes is to look at other ways to deal with structure, other ways to deal with expression, other ways to deal with forming your thoughts.” 

Emanuel Ax will perform on Tuesday March 19th at 8 pm at the Leffler Performance Center at Elizabethtown College, as part of the Gretna Music series.  Tickets and information here or call 717-361-1508.

Listen for Jill's conversation with pianist Emanuel Ax, and music from his latest CD, "Variations: Haydn, Beethoven and Schumann," on Crossover, Saturday morning 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