Classical 91.5

Ward Stare

The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra confirmed Tuesday that it is postponing or canceling all of its September, October and November traditional programming. In place of the performances: Five livestreamed concerts, without an audience, from Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre.

The affected shows include all philharmonic, Pops, Sunday Matinee and orKIDStra Series performances, as well as a series of specials that are being rescheduled for next summer. Events scheduled for December and beyond remain in place while the RPO awaits further word from the state.

Erich Camping

WXXI-FM is thrilled to partner with the RPO to present concerts from the the 2019-2020 season with guest artist interviews.   Hosted by Brenda Tremblay.

Get to know the performers and the stories behind the music in these exclusive interviews with WXXI Music Director Julia Figueras.

Learn about future live performances here.

The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra and the Eastman School of Music have agreed to postpone all RPO concerts in Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre effective immediately through April 15.

A statement from the RPO notes that following Governor Andrew Cuomo declaring a ‘state of emergency’ over the weekend, the University of Rochester issued plans to restrict campus events, including Eastman Theatre, in an attempt to limit the impact of the coronavirus.

Why I'm Excited for the RPO's Tosca

Mar 5, 2020


In the 2020-2021 season, the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra will be presenting Puccini’s masterpiece Tosca. Although the work is frequently performed, I still gasped to hear the news. Tosca is an opera near and dear to my heart, and I am excited for it to be a part of the community here in Rochester next season. For anyone unfamiliar with the story, check out a synopsis here

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.

Tessa Ward: Lauren Desberg

Tessa Lark's star is shining brightly. She brings her luminous presence into Kodak Hall this week for a performance with your Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra to perform Alban Berg's Violin Concerto. Tessa and RPO music director Ward Stare came by our studios to talk with Julia Figueras about this deeply moving piece, as well as Bach, Bartok, Webern, and the freedom of fiddling.

Cellist Andrei Ionita brought down the house when he played Shostakovich for his RPO (and American!) debut just over a year ago. He's back in town, this time to play a concerto that struggled to gain a foothold in the concert hall. Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra music director Ward Stare has framed the concerto with touches of spring, dashes of melancholy, and a lengendary ballet. Both came to our studios to chat with Julia Figueras.

10/7      Sibelius:  Violin Concerto Shostakovich: Symphony No. 10 (Augustin Hadelich, v; Ward Stare, cond)

10/14    Brahms: Tragic Overture Dvorák: Piano Concerto Strauss: Also sprach Zarathustra (Stephen Hough, p; Ward Stare, cond)

10/21    Walton: Symphony No. 1 Rachmaninoff: Piano Concerto No. 3 Mozart: Così fan tutte (Yekwon Sunwoo, p; Michael Francis, cond)    

It's a bold opening night for the new Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra season: four works of our time, never before performed by the RPO. Needless to say, the orchestra, under the baton of Music Director Ward Stare, is up to the challenge. Anchoring the program is John Adams' Scheherazade.2, a work premiered by RPO guest soloist Leila Josefowicz. Ward and Leila walk us through that piece - and the three others - and explain why playing contemporary music is important...and thrilling.