Music Features

Now Is the Time
10:57 am
Fri December 26, 2014

Taking Leave of 2014

from Jan Steen, Children Teaching a Cat to Dance, c.1660–1679

The sun turns and we anticipate a new year on Now Is the Time, Saturday, December 27th at 9 pm. Stephen Hartke based The King of the Sun on a Joan Miró painting, itself inspired by a much older Dutch painting by Jan Steen. Chris Campbell finds sounds and creates sounds electronically in Sunface Streams Moonface. Amplified piano and soprano join in five settings of Federico García Lorca by George Crumb; he calls his Spanish Songbook II Sun and Shadow.

Nancy Galbraith features electric Baroque flute and electric cello in Traverso Mistico, and from a live recording we'll hear the exquisite middle movement, "The Joy of Sadness." And to say goodbye to the old year we'll look to one of the piano rags of Brian Dykstra's, Taking Leave.

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Philadelphia Music Makers on WRTI, Dec. 28, 5 PM
2:21 pm
Tue December 23, 2014

Carla Dirlikov: Mezzo-Soprano and Cultural Envoy

Mezzo-Soprano Carla Dirlikov

The title role in Bizet's Carmen is a dream role for any singer, but was particularly significant for Carla Dirlikov, who first fell in love with the opera at the age of three.

"I was mesmerized. I would watch it for hours," she says. The Mezzo-soprano has now played Carmen in more than 70 performances around the world.

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Crossover
3:40 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

Tenor Richard Troxell: "So In Love" with Jazz

Tenor Richard Troxell Singing the National Anthem on Opening Day for the Baltimore Orioles in 2011

Returning guest, tenor Richard Troxell, can sing opera like no one's business.  Whether Rodolfo, Don Jose, Pinkerton, Romeo or Turiddu, he's a master.  Even at the ballpark singing the National Anthem, or just kidding around with Jimmy Fallon, his voice shines.  But jazz-pop?  

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Now Is the Time
12:40 pm
Fri December 19, 2014

Less Than a Week Before Christmas

from Nativity, Domenico Ghirlandaio, c.1480

We're counting down the days on Now Is the Time, Saturday, December 20th at 9 pm. Less Than a Week Before Christmas is David Golub's work for chorus and orchestra: about the cold, about a friend. Morten Lauridsen contemplates the wonder of animals at the nativity manger in one of our time's most-sung pieces, O Magnum Mysterium.

Composer Jennifer Higdon becomes her own poet for Deep in the Night, pondering "this season of love with full brilliant lights." Daron Hagen combines two melodies we recognize with a beautiful one we don't—because he just wrote it—in a work for choir with cello, At Bethlehem Proper. Rounding out the choral works on the program is While All Things Were in Quiet Silence by Ned Rorem.

Two instrumental works find their way in, though. Advent has the same feeling that imbues Yearning, the lovely work for violin and strings by Shulamit Ran, dedicated to Yehudi Menuhin. For solo guitar is the suite of Rick Sowash, helping us count down the days, For an Old Friend at Christmas.

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Philadelphia Music Makers on WRTI
7:40 am
Thu December 18, 2014

Daniel T. Peterson: Aspiring and Inspiring

Dan Peterson, jazz saxophonist, clarinetist and music professor, hosts Philadelphia Music Makers on WRTI, November 2, 6 PM

Daniel T. Peterson’s passion for music began early, but it took a long and winding path before it manifested as his career.

As a young child, Peterson exhibited some talent - singing shyly from the backseat of the car, but mostly engaged with music as a fan. His father’s extensive record collection captivated him, and Peterson spent much of his young life digging through a veritable treasure trove of albums where he was exposed to everything from Miles Davis to Jimi Hendrix.

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Philadelphia Music Makers
12:54 pm
Wed December 17, 2014

Putting On Good Vibrations

Vibraphonist Tony Miceli

Vibraphonist Tony Miceli tells of his musical journey as if it were a love story, one filled with joy and tribulation, optimism, and sincerity.

His tale begins in 1960s New Jersey, where his family would tune in to hear Frank Sinatra over every Sunday breakfast, starting what would become a long romance with jazz, but also radio. During his teenage years he would turn again to the radio for a kind of early-musical mentorship, following the tastes of trusted deejays for guidance.

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Now Is the Time
11:20 am
Sat December 13, 2014

El Niño

It's John Adams's Nativity oratorio El Niño on Now Is the Time, Saturday, December 13th at 9 pm. We'll fit in as much as we can, since the concert-length work is too long for our one-hour show.

Adams says that the birth of his daughter in 1984 was like a miracle. "Four people were in the room, and then there were five," he says, and that became the inspiration for his take on the Christmas story. Along with Latin and English, much of El Niño is in Spanish. The director Peter Sellars, who worked closely with the composer to create this, says that it's like a triptych that cannot be seen all at once. Unfold a panel to see what's there, and you hide another.

Dawn Upshaw, Willard White, and the late Lorraine Hunt Lieberson sing alongside chorus and orchestra in this grand Christmas-time pageant.

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Philadelphia Music Makers
11:44 am
Fri December 12, 2014

David Hughes: Taking Time

Pianist David Hughes

What David Hughes seems to love best about music is the journey. As an artist, he embraces the growth process of taking on difficult pieces. As a performer, he delights in guiding audiences through a complete musical experience. He didn’t always know how to pace himself, though.

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The Philadelphia Orchestra in Concert on WRTI
12:49 pm
Tue December 9, 2014

The Philadelphia Orchestra on WRTI: Andre Watts, Rafael Fruhbeck de Burgos, Dec. 14 at 1 PM

Spanish conductor Rafael Fruhbeck de Burgos (1933-2013)

The entire Philadelphia Orchestra family was saddened this past summer by the death of a great friend of the Orchestra, and a musician of exemplary standards. The eminent Spanish conductor Rafael Fruhbeck de Burgos, who passed away in June, 2013, is featured in a rebroadcast of a program performed in February of 2013, one of his last performances with the Philadelphians.

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Crossover
4:27 pm
Fri December 5, 2014

Anonymous 4: Almost Ready to Retire Their Angelic Vocal Chords

The a cappella quartet Anonymous 4 has been singing mostly medieval music together for more than a quarter of a century.

It's been said that when you hear the vocal group Anonymous 4 perform, you're listening to the music of angels or something that can't possibly come from our world. In a word, unearthly. Unfortunately, that sound won't be around much longer, as the group has decided to retire their angelic vocal cords with the 2015-2016 season.  

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