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.

The Orchestra's 115th season began last September with the initiation of the 40/40 Project, a broadening of the ensemble’s repertoire that featured 40 works not performed on subscription concerts in at least the last 40 years (or ever), in honor of Yannick Nézet-Séguin’s 40th birthday. Philadelphia audiences were asked to vote through electronic and social media, and three favorites were chosen to open the three respective concerts at the end of September.

Join us for an intense performance by Lisa Batiashvili of Shostakovich's Violin Concerto No. 1 with The Philadelphia Orchestra under Yannick Nezet-Seguin. This was the centerpiece of the last concert of the 2014/2015 season and a program the Orchestra took on its European tour, which was a stunning success.

There's a whole world of music out there that, for the most part, goes in one ear and out the other. But if it weren't there, the world probably wouldn't sound as good. We're talking about "production music." Music used to create a mood or feeling without being the foreground element in a production.

Rome in the year 1800 is a deadly place for dissidents. The painter Cavaradossi risks everything to shelter his comrade; but his lover, the fiery Tosca, keeps playing cat and mouse with the lustful and sadistic Baron Scarpia, the chief of police. If Cavaradossi is condemned, will Tosca trade her honor to save him?  Listen to the final performance from Lyric Opera of Chicago's 2015 broadcast season, Puccini's TOSCA, Saturday, July 11th, 1 to 4 pm on WRTI.

Synopsis

Comprised of four violin concertos written by Antonio Vivaldi in 1723, The Four Seasons is probably the Baroque composer's best-known work. Each of the four concerti is based on a sonnet - supposedly written by Vivaldi himself. Each sonnet is divided into three sections (fast, slow, fast), which correspond with the three movements in each concerto. Read the "Summer" sonnet and listen to each part of The Four Seasons, Concerto No. 2 in G minor, Op. 8, RV 315, "L'estate" (Summer)

SUMMER SONNET

Classical pianist Simone Dinnerstein is just back from Havana, where she performed with Cuba's National Youth Orchestra. She is also working with young people back in her hometown, New York. One of her goals? To introduce students to the composer she's best known for performing — Johann Sebastian Bach. She's taking digital pianos into public schools in a program she calls "Bach-packing."

Colin Bell

The music of Beethoven and Dvořák frame works by Gyorgy Ligeti and George Enescu - two composers very familiar to The Philadelphia Orchestra’s Conductor-in-Residence, Cristian Macelaru on WRTI’s Philadelphia Orchestra in Concert broadcast this Sunday, July 5th at 1 pm.

On this month’s Discoveries from the Fleisher Collection, Saturday, July 4th, 5-6 pm, we meet the new curator, Gary Galván. He’s worked at the Collection since 2005 on research and special projects, but this year took over the reins as the seventh curator of the world’s largest lending library of orchestral performance material. Galván will discuss the composers on the program and give us an idea of some of his plans for the future of the Collection.

If ever there was a musician whose battle cry was “freedom” it was Ludwig van Beethoven. His Leonore Overture No. 3 relates the heroic conviction of a woman to free her husband from certain doom. The Piano Concerto No. 2 was composed for his own astonishing virtuoso technique. And the Symphony No. 5 has become so much more than a symphony – its famous first four notes have been turned into a Morse code phrase for "victory." Its propulsive energy and journey escalate towards a finale that has long transcended the concert hall and given hope to oppressed people everywhere.

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