- Program List
Below are many of the more than 170 five-hour 'weeks' of Exploring Music 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.
AA Green and Pleasant LandA Little Traveling Music, Please American Masters, Part I (FREE)American Masters, Part IIAmerican Masters, Part IIIAmerican Masters, Part IVAn Intelligent ConversationArias & BarcarollesArtists in Exile, Part IArtists in Exile, Part IIAutumn Leaves BBach Sleeps in on Sundays Bach to Beethoven Bach's Christmas OratorioBach's Not-So-Minor B-Minor MassBarberBartokBeethoven & that Danged Metronome (FREE)Beethoven and the PianoBeethoven at Parnassus, Part IBeethoven at Parnassus, Part IIBeethoven QuartetsBerliozBernsteinBill's KeepersBoulanger, NadiaBrahms, Part IBrahms, Part II Britten CCall for ScoresCello Concertos (FREE)Child's PlayChopinClowning AroundCoplandCoriglianoCzech out those BohemiansDDebussyDemons, Spooks and Other Things That Go Bump in the NightDirector's ChoiceDistant NeighborsDon't Shoot the Piano PlayerDvorakDvorák, Tchaikovsky & Borodin String QuartetsEElgarEmotion and Meaning in MusicEspanaFFamilies of InstrumentsFamily MattersFauréFit for a KingFour SeasonsFrom This Mighty River: Music of the Children of J.S BachGGame of Pairs, Part IGame of Pairs, Part IIGershwinGet the PictureGitana: Gypsy Music And Its InfluencesHHandelHHaydn and Mozart QuartetsHaydn SymphoniesHidden Gold, Part IHidden Gold, Part IIHindemithHoliday CelebrationHomageII Didn't Know About YouI Hear America SingingI Lost it at the Movies (FREE)In a Family WayIncidentally SpeakingIntimate VoicesInvitation to the Dance, Part IInvitation to the Dance, Part IIInvitation to the Dance, Part IIIIt Takes Two to TangoIt Was a Lover and His LassItalian SouvenirsJJanáčekLLatin CarnivalLes SixLife Among the Dead: Requiem MassesListener's Choice, Part IIListener's Choice, Part IIILisztMMagnificent MagyarsMahler, Part IMahler, Part IIMaiden VoyagesMendelssohnMendelssohn, Schumann and Brahms String QuartetsMerrie EnglandMozart at his Zenith (FREE)Mozart Piano ConcertosMozart's Birthday BashMozart: Bright Lights, Big CityMusic for the MassesMusic in the Time of WarMusical Cryptograms NNationalismNew Releases, Part IINew Wine in Old Bottles (FREE)NielsenNinth SymphoniesNobody Ever Builds a Statue to a CriticOOrpheus in the New WorldOutward BoundPPastoral SymphoniesPiano ConcertosPolandPortraits in Black, Brown, & Beige, Part IPortraits in Black, Brown, & Beige, Part IIPoulenc, FrancisProkofievRRachmaninoffRavelRespighiRoaring 20'sRRussian Five: The Mighty HandfulSSchool DaysSchubert String QuartetsSchubertiade, Part ISchubertiade, Part IISchuman, WilliamSchumann, RobertShakespeare (FREE)Shostakovich, Part I (FREE)Shostakovich, Part IISibelius and GriegSounds of the City of LightsSoundtracksSpring is HereSt-Saëns, Camille St. Matthew PassionStrauss, RichardStravinsky (FREE)String Quartets from Fibich to SibeliusStrings Plus OneSweet Home Chicago (FREE)Symphony, Part 01Symphony, Part 02Symphony, Part 03Symphony, Part 04Symphony, Part 05Symphony, Part 06 (French)Symphony, Part 07 (Russian)Symphony, Part 08Symphony, Part 09Symphony, Part 10TTchaikovsky, Part ITchaikovsky, Part IIThe Big Five, Part I: Chicago Symphony Orchestra (FREE)The Big Five, Part I: New York PhilharmonicThe Big Five, Part II: New York PhilharmonicThe Proud Tower, Part IThe Proud Tower, Part IIThrough the Mail SlotTone PoemsToo Darn BigTriple PlayTudor MusicTwo Very Different Worlds Delius and HolstUUnder the Hood, Part IUnder the Hood, Part IIUnfinished SymphoniesVVariationsVaughan WilliamsVeniceVerdi, Part IVerdi, Part IIVienna, Part IVienna, Part IIViolaWWagnerWagner's Ring CycleWalton, WilliamWater MusicWhat Else Ya Got?Wind QuintetsYYou and the Night and the Music
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Orpheus in the New World
This weeks show title, Orpheus in the New World, is borrowed from a book by Philip Hart of the same name. The book focused on American orchestras in the 1970s, and this week's show focuses on, mostly recent, American composers.
Born 1961 in Milkwaukee, Michael Torke was asked to write a piece for the 1996 Olympics held in Atlanta, Georgia. He composed the piece Javelin and named it such because he thought the word was sleek.
Torke studiend under Joseph Schwantner at the Eastman School of Music, and next we hear Schwantner's piece, Sparrows, written in 1979. It is the setting of 15 haiku's.
Next, we meet Elliott Carter who was born in 1908. He is two years younger than Samuel Barber and two years old than Shostakovich. We hear his Pastoral for Clarinet and Piano which he wrote at age 37 in 1945.
Finally, we meet Aaaron Jay Kernis, a Pulitzer Prize winner, born in 1960. We hear Musica Celestis (Music of the Heavens) which was originally written for string quartet and then later rearranged for string orchestra.
Today's program begins with a violin concerto by Roger Sessions (1896-1985), a famously intelligent man. He spent many years as a professor at Princeton University. Marc Neikrug, also very intelligent, is the composer of the next violin concerto Bill plays. Neikrug spent much of his career as the piano accompanist of Pinchas Zukerman, and is also the director of the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival.
The next violin concerto was written by John Adams. Movement two contains the written phrase "Body Through Which a Dream Flows." This phrase comes from a poem by Robert Hass which Adams said mirrored the sensation of the movement.
The final violin concerto of the program is composed by Stehpen Paulus writing for William Preucil, then concert master of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra.
The program ends with a ragtime piece for the piano by William Bolcom entitiled Graceful Ghost.
Into Eclipse by Stephen Albert, is based on the Ted Hughes transalation of Seneca's version of Oedipus Rex. Albert was also very drawn to James Joyce and set several of his works to music. Albert won a Pulitzer Prize for his piece, RiverRun, based on Joyce's Finnegan's Wake.
Albert was killed in a 1992 automobile accodent, and one of his best friends and composer, Christonpher Rouse, dedicated the second movement of second symphony to Albert.
Donald Erb's piece Ritual Observances also deals with loss and is dedicated to Lenoard Slatkin and Mozart. The title is taken from a Dylan Thomas poem.
On a lighter note, we hear the piece T. Rex by Bill's old friend Mark Phillips. The piece is scored for trombones and electronic sounds.
Finally, we hear the piece Morgen-Gesang (morning sound) by Arthur Foote, and several selections from Amy Beach, born Amy Marcy Cheney.
This program begins with Sonata for Violin and Piano by Paul Moravec, a recent Pulitzer Prize winning composer. The piece was written for violinst Maria Bachman, and her piano accompanist Jon Klibonoff.
Next we hear two birthday greeting pieces by Leonard Berstein, the first written for Carl Berm's 85th birthday. The other is a greeting for Alexander Berstein on the first day of his life.
This is followed by the wild piece Symphony No. 3 by Ellen Taafe Zwilich, and then the calm piece Old and Lost Rivers by Tobias Picker. Next is the piece Petroushskates by Joan Tower, the piece is a tip of the hat to her favorite composer, Igor Stravinsky.
This program concludes with several works by Peter Lieberson, written for the love of his life and vocalist Lorraine Hunt Lieberson. The piece premiered in Los Angeles in May 2005 and the recording played in the program is from a live November 2005 performance by the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Lorraine died of cancer a year after that performance.
The final program begins with a piece by Carolyn Jennings called The Loons. Next, we hear Elegy written by one of the violinists from The Emerson String Quartet, Philip Setzer. The piece is written for Setzer's close friend who passed away.
Next we hear several concert pieces from composers usually thought of as film composers: John Williams and Danny Elfman. Williams' piece, The Five Sacred Trees, is based on a Celtic legend. Elfman's piece is entitled Serenada Schizophrana.
Elfman was inspired by Philip Glass, and we listen to a piece from Glass' opera, Orphee. We also hear Cauldrons by Minnesota composer Franklin.
Finally, the program ends with a full performance of the Exploring Music Theme written by Bill McGlaughlin himself. The piece is dedicated to Steve Robinson.