Arts Desk

If you missed any of our short Arts Desk features on the air, you can always find them right here, along with additional related content. Check out stories by WRTI arts reporters Meridee Duddleston, Susan Lewis, David Patrick Stearns, Debra Lew Harder, Kile Smith, and Maureen Malloy. Arts Desk and Arts News Submission Guidelines

Credit: Joseph Lange

Mozart mentioned in a letter to his father that he wanted to write a mass for his new wife Constanze, who was a soprano. “But there was no commission,” says Temple University music history professor Steven Zohn. “It’s not usual for him to write something on spec or just because he wanted to write something that showed the love for his wife.”

Philadelphia has a major new pianist in residence: Sara Davis Buechner, who was recently named faculty pianist at Temple University. The Philadelphia Inquirer's David Patrick Stearns discovered in her a manifesto for artistic survival.

Although their father was an amateur guitarist and composer, Philadelphia Orchestra Principal Clarinet Ricardo Morales and his four brothers and one sister have made music the family business. Born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico, Morales and each of his siblings began their careers there. Now they have multiple connections with the music community in Philadelphia. WRTI’s Susan Lewis talked with several of the brothers.

The plane was the Sikorsky S-42B flying boat, Samoan Clipper, and Captain Edwin Musick was the veteran Pan American pilot. The historic flight carrying mail from Auckland, New Zealand landed successfully in Honolulu on January 3, 1938. But disaster struck on the flight home, and the plane exploded over the Pacific Ocean, killing its seven-man crew.

Opera Philadelphia's production of Charlie Parker's YARDBIRD tells the compelling story of a legendary jazz icon in a way that's meant to broaden and diversify opera’s audience. The role of saxophonist Charlie Parker was composed by Daniel Schnyder with tenor Lawrence Brownlee in mind.

Sergei Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 1 has never been as celebrated as his Second and Third, but as WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, it has all the things we love about Rachmaninoff.
 

On Sunday, November 13, Lang Lang performs Rachmaninoff’s First Piano Concerto on The Philadelphia Orchestra in Concert on WRTI at 1 pm.

A manuscript of a J.S. Bach cantata casts a new light on how Bach intended the piece to be played. A singer gains insight from a line in a Porgy and Bess manuscript that differs from the final lyrics. The Music Division of the massive Library of Congress in Washington, DC,  is a place where performers, composers, scholars and the general public make discoveries of the musical kind.

The Reading Symphony Orchestra reaches out to new audiences with guest performers and music beyond the classic orchestral repertoire. WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports.

John Williams, so famous for his award-winning film scores including Jaws, Star Wars, and Schindler’s List, wrote a violin concerto that transcends the personal story behind it. WRTI’s Susan Lewis has more.

He won the 2015 GRAMMY for "Best Classical Instrumental Solo" for his album, Play, and he collaborates with musicians in a wide variety of styles. WRTI’s Susan Lewis has more on classical guitar virtuoso Jason Vieaux.


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