Classical 91.5

On Record

A collection of discussions between special guests and Music Director and midday host, Julia Figueras. 

Garrett McQueen is a man of many talents: overnight host for Classical 24, creator and producer of the podcast Trilloquy, and bassoonist extraordinaire. He's in town to moderate the opening day panel discussion for the Gateways Music Festival, but found a moment or two to sit down and chat with Julia Figueras about his life path, and why Gateways is inspiring and important to him...and to us.

As has become Ward Stare's tradition, your Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra closes the Philharmonics season with an opera. This year, it's Mozart's Cosi fan tutte, and Ward brought two people into our studios who have been largely responsible for shaping the production: fortepianist Kinza Tyrrell and stage director Grant Preisser. They talked to Julia Figueras about the plot, the editing, and why this opera was not a big hit when it was first performed. 

Cinema is a magic place where sound and image collide and mesh. Jazz trumpeter and Emmy Award winning composer Jeff Beal is in town to conduct EFAME  in a live score screening of The Biggest Little Farm for the One Take Film Festival. He and festival programmer Linda Moroney sat down with Julia Figueras to talk about that magic place, the beauty of documentaries, and why the Eastman School of Music became the home for the Beal Institute for Film Music and Contemporary Media.

Photo: michaelfrancisconductor.com

It's been five years since Michael Francis has been in town to work with your Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, and he's returned for a concert of just two pieces...but those pieces are mighty. In the first half, Sir William Walton's searing Symphony No. 1, with Rachmaninov's Piano Concerto No. 3 featuring Van Cliburn Gold medalist Yekwon Sunyoo in the second half. Maestro Francis stopped by to chat with Julia Figueras about the two works and the universal language of music.

Hough: Sim Canetty-Clark

Stephen Hough is in town to play the Dvorak Piano Concerto with your Rochester Phiharmonic Orchestra, a piece that musicians either love or hate.  Stephen falls on the "love" side, although it did take a little time. So he and Ward Stare (who is meeting this work for the first time) discussed with Julia Figueras why the pros outweigh the cons...with a little chat about Brahms and Richard Strauss surrounding it. And then the phone rang...

On Saturday, April 6, Feminine Fusion joins our line up at 8 PM. The show, which highlights all facets of women in classical music, is produced and hosted by Diane Jones, who is also the midday host at WCNY in Syracuse. Diane took a road trip to our studios to chat with Julia Figueras about Feminine Fusion, the quiet (and sometimes not so subtle) bias against women in the world of classical music, and her journey from executive secretary to composer and radio host.

Clara Schumann blazed a path for women in music, composing and soloing at a time when it was unheard of for women to have a professional career in that world. Yet, we still hear murmers of discontent: she was mean, she wasn't supportive of her husband Robert, she neglected her kids. This "soft misogyny," as pianist Heather O'Donnell calls it, has tainted the legacy of a great artist. 

Violinist Augustin Hadelich, a fan favorite in Rochester, is back in town to perform the Sibelius Violin Concerto with your Rochester Philhamonic Orchestra in a program that also includes Shostakovich's Symphony No. 10.  He and RPO Music Director Ward Stare sat down to talk about both pieces in depth with Julia Figueras, including Augustin explaining why he thinks he's playing it better now than he did on his CD.

Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra Music director Ward Stare told City Paper that Mahler's Symphony No. 7 is "... a weird symphony. Embrace the weirdness." And so he and Julia Figueras did, in a Mahler-sized podcast, with a dash of Wagner thrown in for good measure. So go ahead. Embrace it.

Christopher Seaman, the Conductor Laureate of your Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, is in town for his annual concert. He brings with him a song of protest, a 20th century take on Shakespeare, a suite about love and friendship, and the other solo side of Mozart. Also in the mix: the Rochester debut of Angelo Xiang Yu, who brings a Stradivarius violin and a deep, abiding love for the man whose work he will play. 

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