Saturday Classics

Saturday, 6 to 11 am

Wake up to a great variety of classical music every Saturday morning with host Rolf Charlston. You'll hear works ranging from Baroque to contemporary--from a gentle waltz to a bright tango--from old favorites to something new.

Spheres, of sorts, are in line for Now Is the Time, Saturday, January 23rd at 9 pm. A solo piano chases itself canonically in all in due time by Nils Vigeland; Jenny Q Chai is the pianist. The Infinite Sphere is the name Lawrence Dillon gives to his Fourth String Quartet. He spins rondos and rounds within two movements, hailing a Blaise Pascal quote: “Infinite sphere, whose center is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere.”

An emotionally charged new work commissioned exclusively by the Philadelphia Orchestra, and given its World Premiere this past November by the Philadelphians, will be broadcast in its entirety on WRTI’s Philadelphia Orchestra in Concert broadcast on Sunday, January 24th at 1 pm. Yannick Nezet-Seguin conducts.

Grand Harmonie, the only period-instrument group in the United States exclusively focused on Classical and Romantic repertoire, seems to be based everywhere. Now in its fourth season, it's best known in Boston, has members in Philadelphia, and as the Philadelphia Inquirer's David Patrick Stearns reports, is in Princeton this week performing an ambitious period-instrument version of Beethoven's opera, Fidelio.

Conductors take different paths to the podium. WRTI’s Susan Lewis profiles one of today’s busy young conductors who learned from two of the best in the business.  


You'll hear two sparkling Baroque cello concertos on this month's Applause! broadcast of the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, Sunday, January 18th at 5 pm. 

Benjamin Ealovega

Guest conductor Robin Ticciati conducts The Philadelphia Orchestra in works by Robert Schumann and Wolfgang Mozart on this Sunday's Philadelphia Orchestra in Concert broadcast at 1 pm. Pianist Jonathan Biss is soloist.

New is the word of the day on Now Is the Time, Saturday, January 9th at 9 pm. David Ludwig set The New Colossus, the famous words by Emma Lazarus on the Statue of Liberty, after 9/11, and its timeless message always resonates. From David Starobin’s New Music with Guitar, Vol. 8 is the always smart and attractive music of Paul Lansky; we’ll hear his Partita. James Primosch gets down with “Daddy-O’s New Groove,” the last movement from his Sonata-Fantasia for piano and synthesizer, here played by the brilliant (and Grammy®-Award winning) Lambert Orkis.

Some of the most talented young musicians in our region are members of the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra, now in its 76th season. Join us on Sunday, January 10th at 4 pm to hear The PYO's opening concert of the season, recorded at the Kimmel Center's Verizon Hall.

At the beginning of a new year, consider the beginning of American orchestral music. George Frederick Bristow was the first American-born composer to succeed with that transplanted European institution, the symphony orchestra.

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