December 25 - 29, 2006
Holiday Celebration – All around the world, winter holidays are celebrated, and their music is wonderful to hear, regardless of which tradition you observe. Bill gets us started with Nova Stella, medieval Italian Christmas music with a very early staging of the nativity. We will enjoy Christmas in Paris with music from Debussy, Charpentier and Poulenc and a Polynesian traditional hymn, Anau Oia Ea, plus an excerpt from Amahl and the Night Visitors from the original television production. Bill plays us one of his favorites from Ernest Bloch, Sacred Service. On our final day we will listen to Vaughan Williams' Fantasia on Christmas Carols, and this week’s celebration will end with more holiday cheer from David Bowie and Bing Crosby.
December 18 - 22, 2006
A Little Night Music – As we approach the winter solstice the nights grow longer and the moon becomes so bright that the sky seems to sparkle in its glow. Night sounds also become clear and close in the cold winter air. Composers love capturing these sounds and reflecting them in their music. This week, voices fade away into the musical dreams of a winter night.
December 11 - 15, 2006
Symphony, Part II – Exploring the symphonic form, we’ll sign off from the classical period with the Beethoven 2nd and explore the rich repertoire of the next 50 years.
December 4 - 8, 2006
Edward Elgar – There’s much more to Edward Elgar than graduation marches and the Enigma Variations. A composer of equally masterful symphonies, oratorios, chamber music, and concertos, he led a renaissance in 20th century England that firmly reestablished the country's musical identity.
November 27 - December 1, 2006
Italian Souvenirs – We all would like to have a holiday in Italy, and your desire will just grow and grow as you listen to this week of EM. The composers inspired by the great beauty of Italy include Berlioz, Liszt, Mendelssohn and Elgar. And let us not forget Mozart’s visit as a teenager that changed the course of opera forever.
November 20 - 24, 2006
The Violin Concerto – There is a saying in much of eastern Europe, “Every boy is born with a violin under his pillow”. Parents dream of him as a great violinist, not a doctor or a lawyer as we do in America. And every composer wrote at least one violin concerto here is just a sampling of their output.
November 13 - 17, 2006
Mozart: Bright Lights, Big City – Mozart gets the boot from the Archbishop and moves from his hometown of Salzburg to the music capital of Vienna. This cosmopolitan world opened Mozart’s eyes and ears to a creative world that he expresses so beautifully in his music.
November 6 - 10, 2006
I Hear America Singing – As our nation turns our minds and hearts to vote we here at Exploring Music celebrate America's unique voice in music. Bill takes on the music and poetry of America, from Walt Whitman to Aaron Copland.
October 30 - November 3, 2006
Bach Sleeps in on Sundays – Bach spent most of his life in serve to the Lutheran Church and his God, but he did write secular music too. Here we focus on a five year period of Bach’s life, the time in which he worked for Prince Leopold of Anhalt-Kothen. The cello suites, the violin sonatas and partitas, and the Brandenberg concerti were all composed by Bach, in this five year period.
October 23 - 27, 2006
Magnificent Magyars – Surveying 500 years of music in Hungary. This week we’ll delve into the rich musical history of Hungary, starting with ancient sacred music and working our way through Liszt, Kodaly, Bartók and Hungarian gypsy music.
October 16 - 20, 2006
New Wine in Old Bottles – It’s a week of transcriptions. We’ll sample the creative efforts of gifted composers who gave life and vitality to existing music by transforming it into something new. Selections include music by Bach, Copland, Liszt and Ravel.
October 9 - 13, 2006
Get the Picture? – Listen your way through the works of composers inspired by well-known paintings and poems. Pianist Alicia de Larrocha will perform Goyescas, by Enrique Granados, a musical transcription of Francisco Goya’s paintings. This week’s music includes Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition, Hindemith’s Mathis der Maler (Matthias the Painter), and Rachmaninoff’s Isle of the Dead. Many of these musical works have gone on to be the inspiration for new artistic creations. Art and music are one!
October 2 - 6, 2006
Under the Hood, Part I – How does this thing work? For some of us, the inner workings of a symphony are as inscrutable as the engine of an automobile is to others. Bill McGlaughlin lifts the “bonnet” or hood on a handful of symphonies to explore the mechanics of large-scale compositions. Join us as we take a closer look at works by Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, Tchaikovsky and Sibelius.
September 25 - 29, 2006
Shostakovich, Part II – This week we conclude our two-part series on the life and times of Dmitri Shostakovich. From his later symphonies to the Jazz Suite No. 2, Bill explores all forms of Shostakovich’s writing. Starting with Shostakovich’s Four Romances after Pushkin, Op. 46, and his Symphony No. 5, The Market Place from The Gadfly, Op. 97, Bill ends the week with Kim Kashkashian playing a beautiful performance of the Viola Sonata with Robert Levin.
September 18 - 22, 2006
Shostakovich, Part I – "He forged a musical language of colossal emotional power" says Grove’s Dictionary. This week will be the first of a two-part series exploring the life and times of Dmitri Shostakovich. From his four-note "D-Es-C-H" signature to the musical sounds of the KGB knocking on his door, Bill will help us understand these hidden meanings in his music. Born in Tsarist Russia and living through the establishment of the USSR, his music reflects all of these political changes with emotional depth for the world to hear. Also, having his ear to the ground for music from other places, we will hear his Tahiti Trot and waltzes.
September 11 - 15, 2006
Music in Time of War – Pieces inspired by, reacting to, written in memoriam for, or written in protest to war. This week’s program will focus on composers' reactions to armed conflict, including the great War Requiem by Benjamin Britten. We'll also feature music by Beethoven, Haydn and Shostakovich.
September 4 - 8, 2006
Water Music – In the 5th Century BC, water was classified as one of the four essential elements. Over the centuries artists, poets, philosophers and composers have returned again and again to the mysteries of water for inspiration. This week, we’ll focus on Water Music with works by Vaughan Williams, Mahler, Debussy and (of course) Handel.
August 28 - September 1, 2006
Shakespeare – We’ll sample from the wealth of music inspired by the Bard’s verse, including a suite from Mendelssohn’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and excerpts from William Walton’s film score to the film “Henry the V”. Bill also finds time to fit in a few different musical interpretations from the timeless legend of Romeo and Juliet.
August 21 - 25, 2006
Russian Five: The Mighty Handful – Five prominent composers; Balakirev, Mussorgsky, Cui, Borodin, and Rimsky-Korsakov all worked to help form the Russian National School of Composers, which later was named The New Russian School. These five composers, led by Mily Balakirev, all lived in Saint Petersburg and collaborated from 1856 to 1870. Throughout these programs Bill will research each of these composers and demonstrate some of their most prominent works.
August 14 - 18, 2006
Invitation to the Dance, Part II – This week, we’ll focus on ballet music by Tchaikovsky, Stravinsky, Schubert – even Beethoven! On Wednesday’s program alone we will dance to Bartok’s Miraculous Mandarin Suite and The Wooden Prince, Tchaikovsky’s Sleeping Beauty, and a charming suite of dances from Manuel de Falla’s Three-Cornered Hat.
August 7 - 11, 2006
Robert Schumann – A biography of the torrid and life of one of Germany’s early romantics. Married to composer/pianist Clara Wieck, and a friend to Johannes Brahms, Felix Mendelssohn, and Joseph Joachim, Schumann was at the very heart of the German Romantic intellectual movement in the mid 19th century. He was a composer, pianist, and music critic.
July 31 - August 4, 2006
Triple Play – It’s trios on Exploring Music! Piano trios, string trios, operatic trios and many others. Trios have their own set of challenges for composers and performers, and this week Bill will demonstrate on the piano pointing out to us through their complex structure of voice harmonies. We will hear Beethoven’s Triple Concerto, the trio from Act III of Der Rosenkavalier and, finally Bill will play a wonderful treat from Porgy and Bess performed by the Bill Evans Trio. Join us for a delightful week of music for three, where the odd man is not left out.
July 24 - 28, 2006
Mozart Piano Concertos – This week we will explore Mozart’s piano concerti and all of the relationships that influenced him, especially his one with Johann Christian Bach. While exploring various sounds, the teenage Mozart was so heavily inspired by J.C. Bach's writing that he made it his own. Bach and Mozart bonded over music, as well as over tricky keyboard games.
July 17 - 21, 2006
A Little Traveling Music, Please – Wanderers, farewells, and sightseeing; people are always on the go. This week, Bill calls up, “A Little Traveling Music, Please” from the pens of Handel, Smetana, Duke Ellington, and more. Reflections from such travels infuse themselves into their works, as we will discover throughout the week. We will hear selections from Beethoven’s Les Adieux, Schubert’s Die Schöne Mullerin, and Haydn’s Farewell Symphony.
July 10 - 14, 2006
Gustav Mahler, Part II – For a second week we continue with the life and works of Gustav Mahler.
This week features Kindertotenlieder sung by Kathleen Ferrier; Symphony of a Thousand; and tenor Fritz Wunderlich singing the Drinking Song of the Earth’s Sorrow from Das Lied von der Erde. This is to name just a few highlights- you don’t want to miss this week!
July 3 - 7, 2006
Gustav Mahler, Part I – An Austrian composer who thought, “A symphony should be like the world: it must embrace everything.” With his ten-plus symphonies, Mahler’s world extended horizons beyond anything known to concert audiences. His vision stretched the boundaries of the orchestra, of the symphonic form and even this radio show! Join us for two full weeks on the symphonies of Gustav Mahler.
June 26 - 30, 2006
An Invitation to the Dance, Part I – Which came first, the composition or the dance? Can we even pull them apart? It’s hard to say, but this week we’ll follow the dance through solo works, the opera, and the symphony. Highlights include music by Bach, Beethoven and Mahler.
June 19 - 23, 2006
Les Six – It’s the anti-Wagner and anti-Impressionist tour de force. Join us for the delightfully irreverent bad boys, and girl, of 1920’s Montparnasse, with Auric, Durey, Honegger, Milhaud, Poulenc and Tailleferre.
June 12 - 16, 2006
Haydn Symphonies – Dear old Papa Haydn, as he was known in 18th century Vienna, was a fatherly figure to the finest musicians of his day. He is also the father of the symphonic form. This week we’ll sample some of his 104 symphonies, following their development from modest orchestral pieces to expressions of wit, humor, and drama.
June 5 - 9, 2006
Igor Stravinsky – By his early thirties, Igor Stravinsky had captured the world stage with The Firebird, dazzled audiences with Petrushka and incited riots with The Rite of Spring. Before the First World War, he had earned his place as a seminal figure of the 20th century. We’ll explore this fascinating life and sample his works.
May 29 - June 2, 2006
Under The Hood, Part II – Back by popular request, Bill takes us through the inner-workings of five great symphonies by Haydn, Beethoven, Brahms, Tchaikovsky and Sibelius. Thus allowing us to understand some of the deeper meanings hidden in these symphonies.
May 22 - 26, 2006
Piano Concertos – The piano concerto is one of the most beloved genres of the concert hall. After all, it was the thundering virtuosity of some of the great composer/pianists that gave rise to music's first superstars! To name just a few of our stars we'll explore their world and the great music of Mozart and Rachmaninoff.
May 15 - 19, 2006
Homage – The gift of immortality through the hands of great composers. How would you like to be the subject of a composition by Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, or Mozart? In many cases, the fame of the music has outlasted that of its honoree, but we’ll explore some of these heartfelt gestures and the composers who made them. Works include Handel’s Water Music and Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition.
May 8 - 12, 2006
Child's Play – In hundreds of years of music-making, childhood remains an inexhaustible inspiration. This week, we’ll hear how composers from Purcell to Prokofiev were influenced by the creative energy of youth.
May 1 - 5, 2006
Antonín Dvorák – A five-part biography on the life of Bohemia’s most celebrated composer. We start with a look at Dvořák's early life and works, as well as music from one of Dvořák's first influences, Bedřich Smetana, and continue with his travels to America where he helped define our early musical identity.We will hear works such as Symphony No. 7, Requiem, and New World Symphony.
April 24 - 28, 2006
Listener's Choice –
April 17 - 21, 2006
Spring Is Here – Spring is in the air as we celebrate the coming of flowers and sunshine from under the melting winter ice here on Exploring Music. We will hear Spring from Vivaldi Four Seasons, Beethoven’s Spring Sonata, Strauss, and this time of year can’t be complete without a little rain, so from Chopin, Prelude in D flat, Op. 28 No. 15, or commonly known as “the Raindrop”.
April 10 - 14, 2006
Bach to Beethoven – Exactly 100 years separates Bach’s B Minor Mass and Beethoven’s Choral Symphony – crowning achievements of two very distinct voices. This week, we’ll journey through Italy, France, Germany, and England, tracing inspirations in harmony, rhythm, orchestration and form.
April 3 - 7, 2006
Grieg and Sibelius – We’ll explore the lives and music of the two Scandinavian greats: Edvard Grieg and Jean Sibelius. Music spanning almost one hundred years includes a number of chamber works, Grieg’s Peer Gynt, the Norwegian Dances and several Sibelius symphonies.
March 27 - 31, 2006
Schubertiade, Part II – The title refers to a type of “home-made” music making that became popular during Schubert's time, chamber music. This week we continue to hear chamber music compositions by one of the foremost composers and namesake of this intimate genre, Franz Schubert himself!
March 20 - 24, 2006
Pastoral Symphonies – The show will feature music inspired by bucolic nature scenes, including Pastoral symphonies by Beethoven and Vaughan Williams, and R. Strauss’ Alpine Symphony. We’ll also feature readings of the American naturalist John Muir.
March 13 - 17, 2006
Life Among the Dead: Requiem Masses – This week we’ll venture into hallowed territory with some of the most profound music in the literature, including requiems by Mozart, Verdi, Berlioz, Fauré, Dvorak and Duruflé.
March 6 - 10, 2006
Hector Berlioz – As one of the developers of the symphonic form, Hector Berlioz lived a life full of drama and color. Born in France to parents with plans for him to become a doctor, he pursued everything but medicine. He wrote: “Beethoven opened before me a new world of music, as Shakespeare had revealed a new universe of poetry.” Join us on this amazing journey following the life of Hector Berlioz through musical selections from works such as Lelio, Romeo and Juliet, and Les Troyens.
February 27 - March 3, 2006
Through the Mail Slot – All media outlets have a special place for unsolicited materials. This week we’ll explore unexpected musical treats that were delivered to Bill’s doorstep. This week’s music is a collection of eclectic and colorful works which deserve their very own week.
February 20 - 24, 2006
Beethoven and the Piano – 200 years after the composition of Beethoven’s five Piano Concertos, they’re still the giants of the piano world. Join us for a concerto a day, plus some of his more intimate works for the instrument.
February 13 - 17, 2006
Tudor Music – On this edition of Exploring Music, we look at some wonderful English music from the time of the Tudors. Though the Tudor poets may be more well known than the composers, the composers have left quite a legacy. From the sacred, secular, and consort music of William Byrd, Thomas Tallis, to Henry VIII, who himself wrote a number of pieces!
February 6 - 10, 2006
Felix Mendelssohn – German composer Felix Mendelssohn finds himself at the center of this week's episode of Exploring Music. He has been hailed as one of the greatest musical minds of all time. We venture from his precocious youth to his early death. His great body of work is still in the repertories of chamber groups and orchestras. And it’s the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto that is loved by all. The same love and devotion is true for his String Octet and Italian Symphony.
January 30 - February 3, 2006
España – Bill takes on the confluence of cultures, languages, and terrains in the country of Spain. Monday’s program starts with the religious music of early Spain during a time in which Islam, Judaism, and Christianity existed side by side, to 1492, when the Jews and Moors of Spain were banished from the country. We continue through the next 400 years, and this week concludes with music from present day Spain.
January 23 - 27, 2006
Mozart's Birthday Bash – We’re celebrating Mozart's 255th birthday with some of his most enduring and cherished compositions, including the C Minor Mass, Haffner Symphony, and Clarinet Quintet.
January 16 - 20, 2006
Hidden Gold, Part II – Have you ever had a friend steer you toward terrific music you’d never heard before? This week, Bill has solicited suggestions from a number of radio friends for great pieces of music that almost never get played. Join us for a Celtic Symphony by Bantock and lesser known pieces by Mahler, Wagner, Rodrigo. Get ready to discover your next favorite piece of music!
January 9 - 13, 2006
Don't Shoot the Piano Player —He is doing the best he can. -Oscar Wilde
Starting with the earliest piano trios from Joseph Haydn, Bill will present the best of chamber music that includes the piano— piano trios, quartets, quintets, and more. The piano is a versatile instrument in the chamber music world. Pianists can be members of an established group or featured guests, and composers add them to compositions as the “glue” that joins instruments together. Mozart, Dvôrák, and Brahms all wrote chamber music and then played "musical chairs” to fill the empty seat to join in on the fun. Chamber music written to include the piano continues through the 20th century with Bartok and Messiaen, and on to today with Joan Tower and her colleagues. Bill just touches the surface of this world, and will return to it in the future, so please, take care of our piano players!
January 2 - 6, 2006
Maurice Ravel – This week we are delving into the world of French composer Maurice Ravel. We will explore the many influences that shaped Ravel’s music such as his Spanish and Russian heritage, WWI, and his affinity for late night Parisian Jazz parties in the roaring 20’s. Some works featured in this program include Le Tombeau de Couperin, Boléro, and Rapsodie espagnole.
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