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WRTI Picks from NPR Music
10:31 am
Fri November 30, 2012

Classical Crib Sheet: Top 5 Stories This Week

The New York Philharmonic performing at the current incarnation of Avery Fisher Hall in January 2011.
Chris Lee courtesy of the New York Philharmonic

Originally published on Mon December 3, 2012 12:08 pm

  • Lincoln Center and the New York Phil have confirmed plans for a (long, long overdue) major overhaul of 50-year-old Avery Fisher Hall that "aims to redefine what it means to be a concert hall at a time of challenging orchestra economics and changing audience habits." This will be the third attempt at addressing the venue's acoustical challenges.
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Chinese Composer Tan Dun's Adaptation
4:03 am
Fri November 30, 2012

The Peony Pavilion: A Vivid Dream In A Garden

A garden serves as the stage in the opera.
Zhang Yi

Originally published on Fri November 30, 2012 9:43 pm

The Peony Pavilion is one of China's most famous operas, but uncut performances of this romantic 16th century work can take more than 22 hours. Chinese composer Tan Dun, who's best known for his Academy Award-winning score for the film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, has adapted the work into a compact 75 minutes.

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Around the Nation
3:14 pm
Tue November 27, 2012

Kennedy Center's New Organ No Longer A Pipe Dream

After years of waiting, the Kennedy Center has a new symphonic organ replacing its old Filene organ. The $2 million project will culminate in the organ's debut on Nov. 27. William Neil (left), the National Symphony Orchestra organist, speaks with NSO Assistant Conductor Ankush Kumar Bahl (center) during the organ's test with the orchestra on Oct. 18.
Kainaz Amaria NPR

Originally published on Wed November 28, 2012 9:16 am

It was almost spooky. Each night after 11 p.m., when nothing was stirring in the Kennedy Center Concert Hall, two men would enter. One would sit at the organ, playing a key or series of keys, and the other would crawl around inside the organ pipes, 40 feet off the floor. The process went on for months.

It was the all but final phase of installing a new organ for the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. And on Nov. 27, the organ makes its formal debut.

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Music
3:51 am
Thu November 22, 2012

'Don Giovanni' To 'Nixon In China': Holiday Feasts In Opera

President Nixon pardons a turkey in 1969. There's quite a celebratory banquet scene in the John Adams opera, Nixon in China.
Nixon White House Photographs Series The U.S. National Archives via Flickr

Originally published on Thu November 22, 2012 4:45 am

As you prepare to feast upon cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie and your choice of entree this Thanksgiving, there's also an operatic feast to be had.

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Deceptive Cadence
4:04 pm
Wed November 21, 2012

Max Richter Recomposes 'The Four Seasons'

Composer Max Richter's new album takes on Vivaldi's Four Seasons.
Erik Weiss Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed November 21, 2012 5:57 pm

Composer Max Richter has done a brave thing for any artist in any medium: He's messed with a classic, specifically, Vivaldi's four violin concertos known as The Four Seasons. He has a new album simply titled Recomposed by Max Richter: Vivaldi, The Four Seasons.

Richter says that as a child, he loved The Four Seasons. But as he grew older, that passion faded.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:12 pm
Wed November 21, 2012

Ode To Joy Of Cooking

Pablo Helguera

Got an idea for a classical cartoon, or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.

Pablo Helguera is a New York-based artist working with sculpture, drawing, photography and performance. You can see more of his work at Artworld Salon and on his own site.

Deceptive Cadence
10:37 am
Wed November 21, 2012

Classical Crib Sheet: Top 5 Stories This Week

Chopin, whose Ballade No. 1 in g minor is one of the "musical moments" that inspired a New York Times series.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Thu November 29, 2012 1:29 pm

  • In the New York Times this week, Anthony Tommasini has a series in both print and video about those microcosmic musical moments like "a fleeting passage, a short series of chords, some unexpected shift in a melodic line — when something occurs that just grabs us." What links these diverse bits from Chopin to Puccini to Mahler together?
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Deceptive Cadence
8:56 am
Tue November 20, 2012

Calculated Instability: The Pioneering Sonatas Of C.P.E. Bach

The special effects in Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach's music helped forge a new cutting-edge style.
De Agostini/Getty Images

If Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach wrote a dull piece of music, I've not yet heard it. And even if there is a workaday piece or two lurking within his 300 keyboard sonatas, you certainly won't find it on this new album by British pianist Danny Driver, who deftly uncovers the surprising restlessness of the music.

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WRTI Picks from NPR Music
9:16 am
Mon November 19, 2012

Don't Forget The Music: A Well-Seasoned Thanksgiving Soundtrack

Hunting and gathering music for your Thanksgiving holiday? Check out our playlist.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon November 19, 2012 10:41 am

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