Classical 91.5

Brenda Tremblay

Classical Morning Host and Producer

While you’re sleeping, she’s thinking. 

Thinking about the best ways to wake you up.

A native of Albion, New York, NEA Fellow Brenda Tremblay bolts out of bed each weekday morning at 4:00 a.m. to present classical music on 91.5 FM, streaming at classical915.org.  Before she became a daily host on WXXI-FM in 2009, she tried her hand at every task in public radio, from hosting overnight blues gigs to freelancing for National Public Radio.  Her NPR reports and local documentaries earned three Gracies from the Association of Women in Radio and Television, many AP awards, and a national Gabriel Award. 

In addition to waking up super early, Brenda produces and hosts the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra's radio concerts on Monday nights at 8 p.m. She also collaborates with WXXI news to cover the arts across all media services.

Outside the broadcast studio, singing is Brenda’s passion. She’s performed with choirs in Carnegie Hall, Westminster Abbey, and in the Forbidden City Concert Hall in Beijing.  In Rochester, some of her best memories have been made with friends in the Rochester Oratorio Society and local chamber choirs Madrigalia and First Inversion.  Currently she serves as Music Director at St. Luke's Episcopal Church in Brockport, New York.

          

Brenda Tremblay wakes you up with classical music, brief news updates, and a daily Mystery piece at 6:40 a.m.  The theme? Romance!

Monday, December 9

Treat yourself to Mozart’s A Little Night Music, a charming mandolin concerto, and a performance featuring Rochester violist John Graham.

Tuesday, December 10

You’re invited to start the day with outstanding recordings from Concentus women’s choir, Mitzie Collins, and the Baltimore Consort.

Wednesday, December 11

(Julieta Cervantes photo)

In 2015, when Meredith Monk walked into the White House to receive a National Medal of Arts from then President Obama, she says had a plan.

She remembered, “We were all like deer in the headlights, but I was determined I was going to give him a hug.   I’m tiny and he’s very, very tall, so he bent down and I whispered in his ear, ‘Keep on trucking.’  He said, “There’s nothing else we can do.’"

From that point on, Monk said, everybody wanted to hug the President, and the hugs got longer and longer.

Getty images

Former Rochester resident and long-time Eastman professor Christopher Rouse died unexpectedly on Saturday.

His wife Natasha Rouse made the announcement on his facebook page:

"I am greatly saddened to announce the death of my husband and friend, Christopher Chapman Rouse III, on September 21st at 11:27 a.m. He passed away unexpectedly due to sudden complications from his eight year battle with renal cancer.

Eastman School of Music

To get to know Maria Newman, you have to understand who her father was.   She is the daughter of nine time Academy award-winning film composer Alfred Newman, who wrote the 20th century Fox fanfare.  Her brothers and cousin are equally famous; there’s Randy Newman of Toy Story fame, Thomas Newman, who scored Finding Nemo and Shawshank Redemption. Her brother David has scored nearly 100 films such as Galaxy Quest

It’s no exaggeration to say she comes from a musical dynasty.

Brenda Tremblay

How was your summer?

Mine was transformational. 

It began with a phone call last spring.   A singer and retired teacher contacted me and asked, “How would your church like a pipe organ?”   

My ears maximally perked.   As a church musician for about fifteen years, I’d been playing a 1960’s Allen electric organ, a workhorse at the end of its life.  Pipe organ purists would call it a toaster.

Kathryn Lewek on Twitter

Early this week, American soprano Kathryn Lewek unleased a firestorm of social media posts taking aim at opera critics who've commented on her body.   Lewek, a nursing mother, says she was appalled and hurt by reviews of her performance as Eurydice in a production of Jacques Offenbach’s Orpheus in the Underworld at the Salzburg Festival.

Joshua Boucher/Chautauqua Institution

A beloved Western New York musician has died unexpectedly. 

Jared Jacobsen, the longtime organist and coordinator of sacred music and worship at the Chautauqua Institution was killed Tuesday in a car crash on Route 84 near Geneva, Ohio.  He was 70 years old. 

In a statement, Chautauqua Institution President Michael E. Hill said:

Karli Cadel

On the surface of things, the plot of the new opera Blue is the simplest human story of all.

Two people fall in love and have a baby. 

But Blue, the new work by Jeanine Tesori and Tazewell Thompson, is complicated by three facts: the couple is black, the dad is a cop, and their baby is a boy. 

Martin Divisek/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

"For decades, Placido Domingo, one of the most celebrated and powerful men in opera, has tried to pressure women into sexual relationships by dangling jobs and then sometimes punishing the women professionally when they refused his advances, numerous accusers told The Associated Press."

Read more here.

Quajay Donnell

The Washington Post took an interest in a Rochester public art project created by Shawn Dunwoody.  Read the article here.

Pages