WRTI Picks from NPR Music

WRTI Picks from NPR Music
12:25 pm
Fri February 7, 2014

Valery Gergiev, The Powerful And Polarizing Maestro

Russian President Vladimir Putin (left) presents the "Hero of Labour" award to conductor Valery Gergiev, head of the Mariinsky Theatre.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed February 5, 2014 2:10 pm

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WRTI Picks from NPR Music
6:42 pm
Sun February 2, 2014

Duke Ellington's Lost Opera, Forever A Work In Progress

Karen Marie Richardson (right) plays the title role in the Long Beach Opera's staging of Queenie Pie, the jazz opera Duke Ellington left unfinished when he died in 1974.
Bryan Frank Long Beach Opera

Duke Ellington added more than 3,000 songs to the American music vault before his death in 1974. He also started composing what he hoped would be a great American street opera — which composers have spent 40 years adapting, trying to figure out what the Duke wanted for his unfinished opus.

But before you imagine soothing arias or boisterous trills and vibrato, let me stop you: Ellington's opera is very much a work of jazz.

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WRTI Picks from NPR Music
12:56 pm
Fri January 31, 2014

Too Much Of A Good Thing? Jane Ira Bloom's Beautiful Ballads

Jane Ira Bloom.
Johnny Moreno Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri January 31, 2014 4:08 pm

When soprano saxophonist Jane Ira Bloom plays Kurt Weill's "My Ship" on her new album Sixteen Sunsets, a pale glow around her notes comes from a simple special effect: pointing her horn under the hood of a piano whose strings are free to resonate. Bloom has always been preoccupied with sound, and has one of the prettiest, clearest tones around on soprano.

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WRTI Picks from NPR Music
8:51 am
Thu January 30, 2014

Dave Brubeck Was The Macklemore Of 1954

Dave Brubeck received a posthumous tribute at the 2013 Grammy Awards.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

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WRTI Picks from NPR Music
7:23 am
Thu January 30, 2014

Guess Who's Singing The National Anthem At The Super Bowl?

From taffeta to tackles: Soprano Renee Fleming has been tapped to sing at Super Bowl XLVIII.
Karin Cooper Courtesy of Washington National Opera

Originally published on Tue January 21, 2014 4:05 pm

She's probably not among your first, or second, or 10th, or 20th-round guesses, but the NFL just announced that American soprano Renee Fleming will sing the national anthem at Super Bowl XLVIII on Feb. 2.

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WRTI Picks from NPR Music
5:30 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

Remaking All That Jazz From Shanghai's Lost Era

Electronic music producer Dave Liang and jazz singer Zhang Le collaborated on a new album of Shanghai jazz standards from the 1930s and 1940s.
Zhuang Yan Courtesy of the artists

Originally published on Tue January 28, 2014 6:55 pm

You may not hear it when you're listening to Shanghai jazz standards from the 1930s and '40s, but dig deeper into their history and you'll find a generational skip in the record.

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WRTI Picks from NPR Music
5:08 am
Sun January 26, 2014

94 Years After Her Death, Maud Powell Finally Wins A Grammy

Originally published on Sun January 26, 2014 9:20 am

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WRTI Picks from NPR Music
4:54 pm
Thu January 16, 2014

Heavenly Music From Hildegard Of Bingen, A Soon-To-Be Actual Saint

Originally published on Wed December 21, 2011 4:43 pm

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WRTI Picks from NPR Music
5:31 pm
Wed January 15, 2014

The Minnesota Orchestra's Labor Dispute Is Over. What's Next?

The Minnesota Orchestra musicians and management have finally bridged their long and bitter labor dispute.
Ann Marsden Minnesota Orchestra

Originally published on Wed January 15, 2014 7:44 pm

After 15 months of acrimony, the longest labor dispute at a major American symphony orchestra has ended. The Minnesota Orchestra and its musicians reached an agreement last night and players will return to work on February 1. While all sides are relieved, most admit the hard work of rebuilding some seriously damaged bridges is just about to begin.

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WRTI Picks from NPR Music
3:48 pm
Tue January 14, 2014

The 'Ode To Joy' As A Call To Action

A Chinese student at the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests, where speakers playing Beethoven's Ninth Symphony were rigged up to drown out government broadcasts.
Battle Hymns Productions

Originally published on Wed January 15, 2014 5:39 pm

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