Saturday Classics

Saturday, 6 am to 12 noon

Treat yourself to a delightful variety of classical music every Saturday morning with host Debra Lew Harder. You'll hear works encompassing a wide range of time periods and instrumentation— from the Renaissance to new American classical music—from a gentle waltz to a bright piano sonata—from old favorites to something new.

This Sunday on WRTI, it's a Philadelphia Orchestra concert from last April at Verizon Hall with Conductor-in-Residence Cristian Măcelaru on the podium. The program begins with Sergei Prokofiev’s sparkling First Symphony, completed the summer before Russian revolutionary upheavals led to his departure from his native country for nearly two decades.

In his early twenties, Argentinian composer Alberto Ginastera (1916-1983) won the title "Argentina's Great Musical Hope" with works such as the ballet score Estancia, and popular piano pieces like Danzas argentinas, which strongly evoke the rhythm and flair of the folk music of Argentina.

Johannes Brahms, the perfectionist, destroyed many of his early works. Yet he kept his first published piece of chamber music, even after revising it 35 years later. WRTI’s Susan Lewis talked with violinist Joshua Bell, who has recorded the Piano Trio in B Major, Op. 8 that Brahms wrote when he was just 20 years old. 

DonkeyHotey

In the run-up to the November elections, political ads proliferate. WRTI’s Susan Lewis looks at how music contributes to the message.

George Frideric Handel was born in Germany in 1685, and moved to Britain as a young man. He spent his most productive years there, and became a naturalized British subject in his early 40s. His now-famous Water Music suites, commissioned for King George I for a ceremonial boat ride on the River Thames in London, were first performed during the summer of 1717.

Join us this Sunday for a re-broadcast of a Philadelphia Orchestra concert from last April, that brings us two Philadelphia Orchestra commissions — Maurice Wright’s Resounding Drums, a timpani concerto composed for the Orchestra’s principal timpanist, Don Liuzzi, and the Clarinet Concerto by Jonathan Leshnoff, composed for the principal clarinetist of the Philadelphians, Ricardo Morales.

Credit: Diana Pinto Photography

Thank you for listening to our 2016 broadcast of the Academy of Vocal Arts' popular Giargiari Bel Canto Competition, recorded live at the Kimmel Center on October 15th. Voting is now over!

Credit: Lisa-Marie Mazzucco

You go to a concert and see a string quartet looking like most every other string quartet — until it dawns on you they’re not looking at music. WRTI’s Susan Lewis talks to the Chiara String Quartet, who plays all the Bartók string quartets, and more, from memory.

Credit: Richard Holt

WRTI remembers Sir Neville Marriner with an entire Saturday morning of his recordings, October 15th, 6 am to noon. The prolific and revered conductor passed away October 2nd in London at age 92.

All three of the works on this Sunday’s Philadelphia Orchestra in Concert re-broadcast were composed in Paris within a five-year period (1928-33), one by a German, another by a Frenchman, and the last by an American. And they all marvelously combine elements of serious composition with popular influences, notably from jazz.


Pages