Classical 91.5
Photo: Gerry Szymanski

Backstage Pass with Cordancia Chamber Orchestra--2/25 & 3/1

Ten years ago, Pia Litak and Kathleen Suher decided to start a chamber orchestra that would present tuneful, innovative concerts. They called their new group Cordancia , and today it's better than ever. On the next Backstage Pass, Pia, Kathleen, and the group join Julia Figueras to celebrate their tin anniversary. Flutist Michael Huerta , the Nico Toscano Concerto Competition winner, will also be on hand to play. Tune in Tuesday, February 25 at 1 PM. the show repeats Sunday, March 1 at 1 PM.

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BPO Composers Reading & About Self-publishing

Feb 12, 2020

Hello everyone, my name is Sia Uhm, a new classical radio intern at WXXI. I am originally from South Korea and I came to the US 7 years ago to attend Walnut Hill School for the Arts in Massachusetts. Currently, I am a composition major at the Eastman School of Music and I am in my final year. 

ACO (American Composers Orchestra) organizes an opportunity called EarShot for emerging composers to have their orchestra pieces come to life and get input from professional composers and performers. My orchestral piece 'Ladybug in the Room' that I wrote last year was recently selected for the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra EarShot New Music Readings. The performance (public reading) occurred on January 30th in Kleinhans Hall, Buffalo, with Maestro Bradley Thachuk conducting, 

As a quick introduction for myself, my name is Malinda Wagstaff. I am originally from Spokane, Washington. I am a soprano in the final year of my undergraduate degree at the Eastman School of Music. I am currently working as the classical radio intern here at WXXI. This spring you can hear me in “The Mother of Us All” with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra and as Beggar Woman in Eastman Opera Theatre’s production of “Sweeney Todd.”

The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra is celebrating the centennial of women’s suffrage in New York State by performing an opera about Susan B. Anthony by Virgil Thomson and Gertrude Stein. This show utilizes characters from history like Susan B. Anthony, Daniel Webster and Lillian Russell. Stein and Thomson also created characters for this show like Jo the Loiterer, Indiana Elliot and my character, Angel More.

News from the world of Classical Music

For the second year in a row, Rochester Contemporary Art Center is encouraging more submissions for its fundraising art initiative with Make Art Day.

6x6 is what RoCo calls the "International Small Art Phenomenon." People of all artistic ability are invited to submit small pieces of art that will be auctioned off at $20, as a fundraiser for the art center.

The event is in its thirteenth year, and along the way, something interesting started to happen.

Judi Vinar

Judi Vinar first saw Bobby McFerrin on the Grammy Awards back in the 80’s.

“I was blown away,” she said by phone from her home in the Twin Cities.  “When I first heard Bobby do a solo piece, you know, a lot of what he does is jump around with a bass note and octave note on top and somehow he fits the melody inside of that.”   

She went out and bought all his records. 

How can one mourn a parent whose harsh judgments frame childhood? This question haunts Philip Kennicott's Counterpoint: A Memoir of Bach and Mourning.

This August will mark 100 years since women won the right to vote with the ratification of the 19th Amendment. To celebrate, the New York Philharmonic has commissioned compositions by 19 women for an initiative it calls Project 19, which had its first concert earlier this month.

A book authored by Eastman School of Music graduate Lauren Haley provides tips for how to develop motivation and talent in children through music. “Kids Aren’t Lazy” provides strategies for fostering self-direction, critical thinking, and creativity in children who are learning musical instruments. Haley is in Rochester to give a talk at the University of Rochester, but first, she joins us on Connections to discuss her research.

We’re also joined by a professional trumpeter and a child psychiatrist who discuss how to positively motivate kids to pursue and practice any hobby or interest they have, while also balancing other life priorities. In studio:

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On Record Interviews

Your Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra and Music Director Ward Stare cap off the celebration of suffrage and Susan B. Anthony with "The Mother of Us All," Virgil Thomson's opera with a libretto by Gertrude Stein. The production, directed by Susan Stone Li, features singers from the Eastman School of Music. Ward and Susan stopped by to talk with Julia Figueras about putting the concert together, and about the path constructed by Thomson and Stein.

Your Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra is having a double suffrage celebration. The first of the two concerts features works by Fanny Mendelssohn, Julia Perry, and a world premiere of Gemma Peacocke's Susan B. Anthony-inspired "All on Fire." The second half of the concert is Mark Mobley's "True and Devoted," a collage of words and music featuring interviews with Rochesterian women.

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Across the Universe/Jeff Spevak

No square on the calendar seems to have escaped. "Extraterrestrial Abduction Day" is March 20. Entire months have been claimed. November is NaNoWriMo. Translation: National Novel Writing Month. And now we're in the midst of FAWM: February Album Writing Month.

Two questions into this phone interview, where Joe Pug is at his home in Maryland, he's called away to an emergency.

"I have to go poopy."

A few minutes later, 3-year-old Rudy's all squared away and has settled in front of the television for some cartoons.

Poopy. "That's the stay-at-home dad life," Joe Pug says. "When I'm not on the road, I'm at home with my kids."

Find more arts coverage at WXXINews.org.

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