The Philadelphia Orchestra

Creatively Speaking
10:40 pm
Sun January 13, 2013

Busy, Busy, Busy!

New York Philharmonic Conductor Alan Gilbert

The hardest working people in show business, at least in the classical music world, can take a bow this week. As WRTI’s Jim Cotter reports, data on the busiest conductors and orchestras in 2012 shows The Philadelphia Orchestra maintaining its place in the top 10 ensembles, while the most active conductor began his professional career in the Philadelphia region.

The survey was undertaken by the website BachTrack.com, which found that for the third year in a row, Beethoven was the most performed of all composers with Arvo Part the most performed living composer.

Predictably, Mozart and Bach came in 2nd and 3rd, but it was not a good year for Mahler who slipped from 9th to 25th -  and Liszt who fell from the 6th to the 24th. Their places in the top 10 were taken by Debussy and Schumann.

The busiest conductor in the world last year was Alan Gilbert whose first music directorship appointment was with Camden’s Symphony in C in the early 1990s. The orchestra he currently directs, the New York Philharmonic, was also, not surprisingly the busiest orchestra in the world, taking over the top spot from the San Francisco Symphony. The Philadelphia Orchestra came in at 9th; slipping one place from last year.

In repertoire, the top three most-performed operas were all by Mozart - two of which had librettos by the one-time Pennsylvania resident Lorenzo Da Ponte.  The Magic Flute was at number one followed by Don Giovanni and The Marriage of Figaro.

And finally, the most-performed works in 2012 were, in ascending order: 3) Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7, 2) Bruckner's Symphony No. 4, and in the top spot, 1)  Handel's Messiah.

Here's a link to the full results of that survey.

WRTI Picks from NPR Music
3:28 pm
Tue January 8, 2013

Leonidas Kavakos: Letting Beethoven Shine

Violinist Leonidas Kavakos.
courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue January 8, 2013 5:15 pm

Violinist Leonidas Kavakos is something of a musician's musician in the classical world. He's a favorite among his collaborators: He's the artist in residence this season at the Berlin Philharmonic, and as a soloist/conductor, he's worked with ensembles ranging from the Boston Symphony to the Budapest Festival Orchestra.

Read more
Creatively Speaking
8:17 pm
Sun January 6, 2013

Pianist Imogen Cooper: Eloquence Personified

From the perspective of U.S. audiences, the British pianist Imogen Cooper was a late bloomer. Though this student of Alfred Brendell had been working steadily in the UK for decades, she was in her 50s before America became aware of this most eloquent interpreter of the classical repertoire.

This week, on January 10th, 11th, and 12th, she performs Mozart’s piano concerto No. 24 with The Philadelphia Orchestra. And, as WRTI’s Jim Cotter reports, she’ll lead this most rebellious of works - by that most rebellious of composers - with an ensemble that knows exactly how it should be.

Creatively Speaking
8:16 pm
Sun January 6, 2013

Why Is The Philadelphia Orchestra Playing Mozart Without A Conductor?

The Philadelphia Orchestra Concertmaster David Kim

Listeners may not think about the visuals in an orchestra concert, but body language is an important way in which musicians communicate with one another. From his chair, Philadelphia Orchestra Concertmaster David Kim leads Mozart’s Serenade in G Major: Eine Kleine Nachtmusik the way it would have been done in Mozart’s time, without a conductor, on January 10th, 11th, and 12th in concerts at the Kimmel Center.

Kim talks with WRTI’s Susan Lewis about body motion and playing without a conductor. Concert information here.

Creatively Speaking
3:32 pm
Fri November 9, 2012

Pianists Christina and Michelle Naughton: Sister Stars

Pianists Chrisina and Michelle Naughton

This week's Philadelphia Orchestra performances of Poulenc's Double Piano Concerto feature the young soloists Christina and Michelle Naughton. Jim Cotter speaks with the twin sisters.

Information about the performances.

WRTI Spotlight
4:35 pm
Wed October 31, 2012

Musical Preview of The Philadelphia Orchestra's November Concerts: Friday at Noon

Pianist Kirill Gerstein is guest soloist in The Philadelphia Orchestra's Music of Copland & Gershwin concerts on November 1st, 2nd, and 3rd.

It's musical highlights from The Philadelphia Orchestra's fabulous array of November concerts - this Friday, November 2nd, right after the news at noon. You'll hear music from their Copland and Gershwin (and Barber and Sierra) themed concerts this week, their Stokowski Legacy concerts next week, and Alexander Nevsky and A Taste of Paris concerts scheduled for later in the month. 

Music for the broadcast on Friday includes works by Samuel Barber, George Gershwin, Cesar Franck, Francis Poulenc, and Sergei Prokofiev.  Don't miss it!

Deceptive Cadence
2:03 am
Thu October 18, 2012

Philadelphia Orchestra Reboots With New Music Director

Yannick Nezet-Seguin leads the Philadelphia Orchestra.
Ryan Donnell

Originally published on Thu October 18, 2012 12:11 pm

Everywhere you look right now, it seems like American symphony orchestras are fighting for their lives — strikes, lockouts, bankruptcy. Perhaps the biggest example is the world-renowned Philadelphia Orchestra, which is just coming out of its own bankruptcy. Tonight, its new 37-year-old music director takes the podium as the venerable orchestra begins a reboot.

Read more
Creatively Speaking
11:06 am
Sat October 13, 2012

The Philadelphia Orchestra Opens Its 2012/13 Season

The Philadelphia Orchestra
Jessica Griffin

We look ahead to The Philadelphia Orchestra’s season with Music Director Yannick Nezet-Seguin.

Music Features
5:04 pm
Thu October 11, 2012

The Philadelphia Orchestra Opens 2012/13 Season With Debut Of Eighth Music Director

Yannick Nezet-Seguin
Chris Lee

Following in the footsteps of legends such as Leopold Stokwoski, Eugene Ormandy, and Riccardo Muti, Yannick Nezet-Seguin is set to conduct his inaugural concerts as music director of The Philadelphia Orchestra. On Thursday, October 18th, the opening-night concert features the music of Ravel, Brahms, and Strauss with soloist Renee Fleming, followed by performances of the Verdi Requiem on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

Opening night concert information - October 18.

Read more
Creatively Speaking
3:44 pm
Sat October 6, 2012

West Side Story: Fifty Years On

Those funky, menacing chords can only belong to one piece of music: West Side Story, the Leonard Bernstein Broadway musical that updated the Romeo and Juliet story into the world of gang warfare to the streets of post-war New York City. The concert suite from the musical has often been played by The Philadelphia Orchestra, though this week it's performing the music in a different incarnation - as an accompaniment to the 1961 Oscar-winning film. The Philadelphia Inquirer’s David Patrick Stearns reports that the enterprise isn’t nearly as simple as it looks.

Pages