The name of Henry Cowell (1897-1965) may be unfamiliar to many classical music listeners, but Cowell is one of the biggest influences on modern American music, inspiring composers as disparate as John Cage, George Gershwin, Burt Bacharach, and generations down to this day. His own music isn't heard that often, but on this month's Discoveries we'll listen to three fascinating pieces out of his gargantuan and stylistically surprising catalog. We'll also talk to musicologist Gary Galvan, who will share some of the facets of Cowell's life and music that made him the important figure that he is.
It's a work by one of the significant names in American music, yet it hasn't been heard for 70 years - until now. We know Ferde (Ferdie) Grofe (Grof-ay) as the composer of the well-known Grand Canyon Suite, and as the original orchestrator of Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue for Paul Whiteman's band. But Cafe Society is a ballet from the height of his career that fell into oblivion.
Gary White, conductor of the Philadelphia Sinfonia - the youth orchestra that recently played Cafe Society at Philadelphia's Kimmel Center - will share with us the full story behind this fanciful evocation of Prohibition-era nightlife.
We're So Close To Reaching Our Fiscal Year Goal...
With contributions from listeners like you - before June 30th - we'll raise the additional $150,000 needed to end the year successfully. Listeners provide the largest source of WRTI's funding. And the music comes your way because of the actions of one listener at a time. Thank you so much, if you've contributed recently. But if you haven't, please do your part by calling 1-866-809-9784, or contribute online.
It will only take a minute or two, but will have a long-lasting impact!
German Romantic composer and influential music critic Robert Schumann was born 200 years ago, on June 8, 1810. We'll celebrate his bicentennial birthday with a day devoted to some of his best-loved symphonic, piano, and chamber music, plus some of his less-frequently heard compositions.
"Great Singers and Big Swingers" Through Memorial Day Weekend
You'll be swinging all weekend long during jazz hours with your favorite classic big bands and vocalists, plus some of the contemporary big bands and jazz orchestras that have recently been on our Jazz Hot 11 Countdown.
More than 2,588 members turned their passion into pledges during the Spring Membership Drive, contributing $243,984 to keep classical music and jazz alive on WRTI. The Drive was a success because of each and every person who decided to stand up for the music. Thank you to everyone who pledged!
If you missed your chance to make a contribution, it's not too late. Pledge now and we'll still say thank you with one of our fabulous Spring Membership Drive gifts.
Thank you again for making WRTI's Spring Drive a success!
Composers write music about love all the time. Hugo Alfven - urbane, well-trained, and rising in all the right circles - began one such piece as a young man in his twenties. It so overwhelmed him, however, that 20 years later it had mutated into a craggy three-quarter-hour symphony of four movements played without break, a luxuriant, ardent, and stunning wordless tale of such power that some critics thought it too suggestive for public performance.