Ricardo Morales

Ricardo Morales solos in the Mozart Clarinet Concerto, and Ching-Yun Hu is the pianist in the world premiere of Red Cliff in this month’s broadcast concert by the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, Sunday at 5 pm on WRTI.

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.

Join us this Sunday for a re-broadcast of a Philadelphia Orchestra concert from last April, that brings us two Philadelphia Orchestra commissions — Maurice Wright’s Resounding Drums, a timpani concerto composed for the Orchestra’s principal timpanist, Don Liuzzi, and the Clarinet Concerto by Jonathan Leshnoff, composed for the principal clarinetist of the Philadelphians, Ricardo Morales.

Philadelphia can expect symphonic fireworks over the Fourth of July weekend when the Kimmel Center hosts the first performance by the National Youth Orchestra 2 on Saturday. NYO2 was formed by Carnegie Hall’s educational arm and is coached by members of The Philadelphia Orchestra. But catching any of the musicians between classes and rehearsals wasn’t easy for the Philadelphia Inquirer’s David Patrick Stearns.

When the Philadelphia Orchestra commissioned Jonathan Leshnoff to write a concerto for principal clarinetist Ricardo Morales, the composer realized a connection between the clarinet and...the Hebrew alphabet. WRTI's Debra Lew Harder explains.


The Philadelphia Orchestra's Principal Clarinet Ricardo Morales shows off his virtuosic skills in two very different and very challenging works in this Philadelphia Orchestra In Concert re-broadcast, Sunday, August 16, 1 to 3 pm.

Competitions have tested serious music students for decades. They also have prompted the composition of works that continue to enrich the repertoire. WRTI’s Susan Lewis has more on Claude Debussy’s Rhapsody No. 1 for Clarinet and Orchestra.

Stefan Malzkorn

Christoph von Dohnányi returns to the podium to conduct the Philadelphia Orchestra in a program of German masterpieces performed this past April at Verizon Hall, culminating in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7, one of the most perfectly crafted works ever written!

Also on the program, Brahms’s Haydn Variations; which almost certainly gave Brahms the confidence to complete his long-awaited First Symphony.  In it, Brahms transforms a simple, lilting melody into a tour-de-force for orchestra.

Classical serenades by chamber ensembles were often light, outdoor entertainment in late 18th-century Vienna. As WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, this week’s WRTI concert broadcast of the Philadelphia Orchestra features one of the more ambitious creations in the genre.

Musicians are, understandably, very particular about the instruments they play. As WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, a principal player in the Philadelphia Orchestra was so interested in refining his instrument, he wound up creating a whole line of clarinets.

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