Creatively Speaking

Creatively Speaking
10:54 am
Mon June 23, 2014

Frank Gehry's Plan for the Transformation of the Philadelphia Museum of Art's Iconic Building

In architect Frank Gehry's master plan, the heart of the Museum will be opened up, creating a clear sight line through the ground-floor and first-floor galleries that will greatly simplify wayfinding.

After more than a decade of planning, The Philadelphia Museum of Art is unveiling a blueprint for a major, multi-phase renovation and expansion designed by renowned architect Frank Gehry. As WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, the transformation of the iconic structure will be nearly invisible from the outside. 

Making a Classic Modern: Frank Gehry’s Master Plan for the Philadelphia Museum of Art opens July 1st and runs through September 1st.

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Creatively Speaking
10:36 am
Mon June 23, 2014

Painter Benjamin West: A Colonial-Age Art Superstar

Benjamin West in a portrait by Gilbert Stuart, 1783-1784.

Born in 1738 in a village just outside Philadelphia, Benjamin West was one of the first Americans to achieve superstar status on the international art scene.  However, as WRTI’s Jim Cotter Reports, West’s success came not at home, but abroad.

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Creatively Speaking
7:12 am
Mon June 23, 2014

Renaissance Man, Pianist Stephen Hough, Explores "The Night" in His New CD

Once named by The Economist magazine as one  of the world’s 20 living polymaths, pianist Stephen Hough pursues a variety of  interests, from music to poetry to painting. In 2001 he became the first classical music performer to win the prestigious MacArthur Foundation "Genius" Fellowship.  WRTI’s Susan Lewis has more on this versatile artist, and his most recent CD.

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Creatively Speaking
12:31 pm
Tue June 17, 2014

An Orchestra Musician Who Has Seen Them All

Herbert Light holds the Larry A. Grika Chair in the first violin section of the Philadelphia Orchestra.

Since its founding in 1900, The Philadelphia Orchestra has had four music directors whose tenures have lasted more than a decade. Today, as WRTI's Jim Cotter reports, there is one member of the ensemble who has played under all of these great conductors.

When violinist Herbert Light won his audition for the Orchestra in 1961, it was his second job offer in a week.

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Creatively Speaking
12:28 pm
Tue June 17, 2014

Ouch! The Mortal Misstep Of The Sun King's Composer

Jean-Baptiste Lully (1632-1687), the influential French Baroque composer/conductor in the court of Louis XIV, had an unusual demise. Some conductors in the Baroque era conducted with rolled up scores.

Falling off the podium or into the orchestra pit weren’t the occupational hazards befalling French Baroque composer Jean-Baptiste Lully - but his was no less risky. Temple University Professor Steven Zohn, an expert in Baroque music, recounts the conducting move that led to Lully’s death.

Zohn says Lully, who first came to the attention of King Louis XIV as a dancer, profited from his relationship with the monarch - and his power over the musical facets of the royal court became wider and wider. 

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Creatively Speaking
12:21 pm
Tue June 17, 2014

A Master Percussionist Nurturing the Next Generation

Percussionist Alan Abel

This week, percussion students from the U.S. and countries as far away as Argentina and Asia are gathering at Temple’s Boyer College of Music and Dance for a seminar led by a former Philadelphia Orchestra percussionist.  As WRTI's Susan Lewis reports, Alan Abel continues year round to share his talents as a musician and craftsman.

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Creatively Speaking
5:40 pm
Mon June 16, 2014

Exploring Mozart's Musical Mysteries with 19-Year-Old Superstar Pianist Jan Lisiecki

Polish/Canadian pianist Jan Lisiecki was Gramophone Magazine's 2013 Young Artist of the Year.

Among Mozart’s hundreds of compositions are 27 piano concertos. As WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, the young pianist Jan Lisiecki, who is making his mark today, is drawn to their musical purity, emotional complexity, and sense of fun.

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Creatively Speaking
3:54 pm
Mon June 16, 2014

Rocky Wins Again!

ROCKY, THE MUSICAL is now on Broadway at NYC's Winter Garden Theatre.

After six films made over 30 years, the mythical Philadelphia boxer Rocky Balboa has graduated to Broadway, with Rocky, the Musical, which last week won a Tony Award. The Philadelphia Inquirer’s David Patrick Stearns says the old underdog is perfectly recognizable on the Winter Garden Theatre stage. But much else has changed.

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Creatively Speaking
6:20 am
Mon June 9, 2014

The Ocean City Pops Are Back For Summer!

As summer approaches, WRTI's Jim Cotter takes us down the shore to the Ocean City Music Pier. There have been concerts on the music pier since 1929, when it hosted performances by the new Municipal Orchestra. Since then, what is today the Ocean City Pops, has operated under a variety of names and conductors. In 1987, the orchestra appointed a new music director; William (Bill) Scheible has led the Pops since then.

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Creatively Speaking
6:01 am
Mon June 9, 2014

The Very Political Ludwig van Beethoven

The second movement of Beethoven's Symphony No. 7 is "kind of a march," says Christoph von Dohnanyi, "in respect for all the victims who suffered by Napoleon's attacks."

Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827) wrote his seventh symphony in the midst of Napoleon’s attempts to conquer Europe. As WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, the work, and its second movement in particular, is a tribute to freedom. Here, the Israel Philharmonic conducted by Zubin Mehta, performs:

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