- Program List
Below are many of the more than 170 five-hour 'weeks' of Exploring Music that have been created since 2003. The first seven minutes of every program are free to sample. Several entire 5-hour programs are also free to listen (marked 'free' below). For complete access to all of the shows, click here to become a subscriber. To sort through the shows by composers click here. To see the playlist for a given show, click on the show and then on the 'playlist' button beneath any of the five one-hour programs.
AAmerican Masters, Part I American Masters, Part II American Masters, Part IIIAmerican Masters, Part IVAmerican Masters, Part V An Intelligent Conversation: String Quartets Arias & BarcarollesArtists in Exile, Part IArtists in Exile, Part IIAutumn Leaves Autumnal Masterpieces BBach Sleeps in on Sundays Bach to Beethoven Bach's Christmas Oratorio Bach's Not-So-Minor B-Minor MassBallad of East and West Barber, SamuelBartok, BelaBeethoven & that Danged MetronomeBeethoven and the PianoBeethoven at Parnassus, Part IBeethoven at Parnassus, Part IIBeethoven QuartetsBerlioz, HectorBernstein, LeonardBill's Keepers Boulanger, NadiaBrahms, Johannes, Part IBrahms, Johannes, Part II Britten, Benjamin Bruckner, Anton CCall for ScoresCello Concertos Child's PlayChopin, FredericClash of the Titans Clowning AroundCopland, Aaron Corigliano, JohnCzech out those Bohemians DDebussy, Claude Demons, Spooks and Other Things That Go Bump in the NightDirector's ChoiceDistant Neighbors Don't Shoot the Piano PlayerDvořák, AntoninDvorak, Tchaikovsky & Borodin String Quartets EElgar, EdwardEmotion and Meaning in MusicEnescu, GeorgesEspanaFFamilies of Instruments Family MattersFauré, GabrielFit for a KingFour SeasonsFrom This Mighty River: Music of the Children of J.S BachGGame of Pairs, Part I Game of Pairs, Part IIGershwin, GeorgeGet the PictureGitana: Gypsy Music and Its Influences Green and Pleasant Land Grieg and SibeliusHHandel, George FridericHaydn and Mozart QuartetsHaydn SymphoniesHidden Gold, Part IHidden Gold, Part IIHHindemith, PaulHit or Myth Holiday CelebrationHomageII Didn't Know About YouI Hear a Rhapsody I Hear America Singing I Lost it at the Movies (FREE)In a Family WayIncidentally SpeakingIntimate VoicesInvitation to the Dance, Part I Invitation to the Dance, Part II Invitation to the Dance, Part IIIIt Takes Two to TangoIt Was a Lover and His Lass Italian SouvenirsJJanacek, LeosKKeyboard SmorgasbordLLatin CarnivalLes SixLife Among the Dead: Requiem MassesListener's Choice, Part IIListener's Choice, Part III (FREE)Liszt, Franz Little Night Music Little Traveling Music, Please MMaestro, Part IMaestro, Part IIMagnificent MagyarsMahler, Gustav, Part IMahler, Gustav, Part IIMaiden VoyagesMendelssohn, FelixMendelssohn, Schumann and Brahms String QuartetsMerrie EnglandMozart at his Zenith Mozart Piano ConcertosMozart's Birthday Bash (FREE)Mozart: Bright Lights, Big CityMusic for the MassesMusic from the Magic Box Music in 19th Century Paris: Waterloo to Bismarck Music in the Time of WarMusic of ScandinaviaMusical Cryptograms NNationalismNew Releases, Part II (FREE)New Releases, Part III, week 1 of 2New Releases, Part III, week 2 of 2 New Wine in Old Bottles Nielsen, Carl Ninth SymphoniesNobody Ever Builds a Statue to a CriticOOrpheus in the New World Outward BoundPPastoral Symphonies Piano ConcertosPolandPortraits in Black, Brown, & Beige, Part I Portraits in Black, Brown, & Beige, Part II Ports of Call, Part I Ports of Call, Part II Poulenc, FrancisProkofiev, SergeiProud Tower, Part IProud Tower, Part IIRRachmaninoff, SergeiRavel, Maurice Respighi, OttorinoRimsky-Korsakov and His PupilsRoaring 20's Russian Five: The Mighty HandfulSSchool DaysSchubert String QuartetsSchubertiade, Part ISchubertiade, Part IISchuman, WilliamSchumann, Robert Shakespeare Shostakovich, Dmitri, Part I Shostakovich, Dmitri, Part IISlipped Through the Cracks Sounds of the City of Lights SoundtracksSpanish SchoolSpring is Here St-Saëns, Camille St. Matthew PassionStrauss, RichardStravinsky, Igor String Quartets from Fibich to SibeliusStrings Plus OneSweet Home Chicago Symphony, Part 01Symphony, Part 02 Symphony, Part 03 Symphony, Part 04Symphony, Part 05 Symphony, Part 06 (French)Symphony, Part 07 (Russian)Symphony, Part 08 Symphony, Part 09Symphony, Part 10TTchaikovsky, Peter, Part ITchaikovsky, Peter, Part IIThe Big Five, Part I: Chicago Symphony Orchestra The Big Five, Part I: New York PhilharmonicThe Big Five, Part II: New York PhilharmonicThe Gathering Storm: Music from the Great Depression to WWIIThrough the Mail SlotTone Poems Too Darn BigTriple PlayTudor MusicTwo Very Different Worlds Delius and HolstUUnder the Hood, Part IUnder the Hood, Part II Unfinished SymphoniesVVariationsVaughan Williams, RalphVeniceVerdi, Giuseppe, Part IVerdi, Giuseppe, Part IIVienna, Part IVienna, Part II ViolaViolin Concerto Voices from the East WWagner's Ring CycleWagner, RichardWalton, WilliamWater MusicWhat Else Ya Got?Wind QuintetsWunderkinder, Part IWunderkinder, Part IIYYin and Yang: The Play of Opposites, Part 1 (FREE)Yin and Yang: The Play of Opposites, Part 2You and the Night and the Music
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Beethoven and the Piano Purchase Now
At age 13, Ludwig Van Beethoven wrote his first piano sonata, which was published when he was 24-years-old. Bill samples Beethoven's first concerto, named as his second due to publishing order, and demonstrates Bill's favorite passage of the piece. He describes the passage as one that provides evidence that composers could become poetic and prophetic. Then Bill samples one of Beethoven's most famous pieces, "Pathetique Sonate," as the music that brought him so much satisfaction that he did not write in that style again.
Beethoven: Piano Sonata Op. 2 No. 1, I & II
Beethoven: Concerto for Piano No. 2 in B-flat major, Op. 19
Cleveland Orchestra/Szell; Fleisher, p.
Beethoven: Sonata for Piano No. 8 in C minor, Op. 13, Pathétique, I
Beethoven: Sonata for Piano No. 9 in E major, Op. 14 No. 1, I
The beginning of the nineteenth century marked the shift from the "rational" to the "emotional," the shift from the age of Enlightenment to the age of Romanticism. The clarity, balance, and reason that can be heard with Enlightenment-age composers such as Mozarrt and Haydn is present in much of Beethoven's earlier piano works such as the Piano Concerto No. 1 and the Piano Sonata No. 11. However, Beethoven is responsible for guiding the shift to the personal, emotive quality of Romantic-era music, and the tension between these two differing ideologies courses through his compositions after the turn of the century.
Beethoven: Sonata No. 11 in B-flat, Op. 22, III
Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 1 in C Major, Op. 15
Concertgebouw/Wallberg; Argerich, p.
:30, :25, 34:08
Beethoven: Sonata for Piano No. 14 in C-sharp minor, Op. 27 No 2, Moonlight, I & III
The third installment of Beethoven's piano works begins with the third piano concerto, which marked a significant departure from his previous works, much like his groundbreaking third symphony which was published around the same date. This concerto is notable for the deeply contrasting styles of the first and second movements, especially in the harmonic language employed. Bill equates the slow second movement to a poetic journey, with unexpected tonality giving way to deep emotional expression.
Bill examines the"Appasionata," and the fourth concerto, discussing how the themes Beethoven composed during this time were usually quite simplistic. And yet, they allowed for incredible development using rhythmic repetition and variation. The fourth concerto marks a departure from the traditional "double exposition" common in previous concertos, where the piano entrance comes after an extended orchestral introduction. Here, the piano opens the piece to dramatic effect.
Beethoven: Sonata for Piano No. 23 in F minor, Op. 57, Appassionata, I
Beethoven: Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 4 in G Major, Op. 58
CSO/Levine; Brendel, p.
Beethoven: Sonata for Piano No. 24 in F-sharp major, Op. 78, I
This final installment begins with a piano transcription of Beethoven's D Major Violin Concerto, and then onto the monumental "Emperor" concerto.
Beethoven: Concerto for Piano No. 6 in D major, Op. 61, III
Sinfonia Varsovia/Menuhin; Duchable, p.
Beethoven: Concerto for Piano No. 5 in E-flat major, Op. 73, Emperor
Berlin Phil/Leitner; Kempff, p.
Beethoven: Sonata for Piano No. 21 in C major, Op. 53, Waldstein, II