December 27 - 31, 2010
The Symphony, Part VII – Our exploration of the symphony continues with a look Russia's contributions, from Rubinstein and Rimski through Glazunov and Gliere.
December 20 - 24, 2010
Bach Christmas Oratorio – An exploration of the six Cantatas performed in Leipzig’s St. Thomas and St. Nicholas Churches in December 1734.
December 13 - 17, 2010
Beethoven Quartets – Join us as we savor Beethoven's sixteen seminal contributions to the string quartet form- plus the Grosse Fuga- to celebrate the great master's 240th birthday.
December 6 - 10, 2010
Grieg & Sibelius – We’ll explore the lives and music of the two Scandinavian greats: Edvard Grieg and Jean Sibelius. Music includes a number of chamber works, Grieg’s Peer Gynt, the Norwegian Dances and several Sibelius symphonies.
November 29 - December 3, 2010
The Symphony, Part VI – The symphony has been fertile ground for composers throughout history and around the world. This week, we'll follow its development in France in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
November 22 - 26, 2010
Families of Instruments – This week, we’ll explore the sections of the modern orchestra: strings, woodwinds, brass, and percussion.
November 15 - 19, 2010
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.
November 8 - 12, 2010
Aaron Copland – For some, Aaron Copland conjures images of covered wagons and endless frontiers. For others, he evokes Olympic athletes, astronauts and fallen heroes. From waves of grain to stars and stripes, Aaron Copland defined the soundtrack to everything American. This week, we’ll trace his trek from the heart of Brooklyn to the heart of a nation. Featured works include Appalachian Spring, Rodeo, Fanfare for the Common Man and Billy the Kid.
November 1 - 5, 2010
Bill's Keepers – Bill's inbox is overflowing with albums sent by friends from around the world. This week, he spins some of his top picks.
October 25 - 29, 2010
Richard Strauss – Strauss - whose musical life spanned nine decades, two world wars and the Third Reich - was one of Germany's most gifted and controversial figures. We'll explore his tone poems, operas, and life both public and private in this five-part biography.
October 18 - 22, 2010
Autumn Leaves – Works inspired by sights, sounds and smells of nature after summer's end, including selections by Vivaldi, Piazzola, Delius and Schubert.
October 11 - 15, 2010
Cello Concertos – For many music lovers, the cello's melodic capacity and deep timbre represent the pinnacle of musical expression. This week we'll explore some of the great works written for this instrument and the musicians that made them famous.
October 4 - 8, 2010
Incidentally Speaking – For as long as art forms such as theatre, ballet, and other entertainments have graced the stage, composers have been there to enhance the dramatic action through music. This week Bill explores some of the not-so-incidental music that has resulted.
September 27 - October 1, 2010
Dmitri 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 20 - 24, 2010
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 13 - 17, 2010
Distant Neighbors – Wonderfully rich and historic music from Mexico and South America.
September 6 - 10, 2010
Director's Choice – Music creatively suggested by our colleagues at radio stations around the world.
August 30 - September 3, 2010
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! This week, we'll explore their world and the great music they produced.
August 23 - 27, 2010
Listener's Choice, Part II – Back again! Last year we gave an entire week to listener requests, but the suggestions just kept on coming. This all-new edition includes African-American composers, a Japanese Koto ensemble playing Handel, and traditional Hawaiian pieces.
August 16 - 20, 2010
Sweet Home Chicago – Exploring Music teams up with the Grant Park Music Festival. Orchestral and choral performances and recordings.
August 9 - 13, 2010
Magnificent Magyars – 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.
August 2 - 6, 2010
William Schuman – We'll survey the life and explore the compositions of the great dean of American music in the 20th century, William Schuman, in celebration of his 100th birthday.
July 26 - 30, 2010
I Lost it At the Movies – Celebrating music of the cinema.
July 19 - 23, 2010
Artists in Exile, Part II – Bill continues to reflect on artists in exile, beginning with music from Paul Hindemith. In his escape from Nazi Germany, Hindemith traveled to Turkey, England, and Switzerland before coming to America. We will listen to his Symphony for Concert Band and When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom’d. Bill then considers the plight of composers who faced deportation from America because of their political views. We finish this two-week series with composers from Asia and Latin America. Glorious music from Chen Yi and Gabriela Lena Frank, as well as Tan Dun’s title song for Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.
July 12 - 16, 2010
Artists in Exile, Part I – Our two-week series titled Artists in Exile pays homage to Joseph Horowitz’s book that focuses on "how refugees from 20th-century war and revolution transformed the American arts.” In this program, you will hear stories of appreciation for a new country, but also of terrible loneliness that comes from being forced from one's home by political strife. Bill begins this week with a vacationing artist, Antonín Dvořák, before playing music from Serge Prokofiev, who fled the Soviet Union. This week will end with Hungarian Béla Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra, written in America.
July 5 - 9, 2010
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!
June 28 - July 2, 2010
Gustav Mahler, Part I – "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 and the symphonic form. Join us for two full weeks on the symphonies of Gustav Mahler.
June 21 - 25, 2010
Outward Bound – Bill explores the musical expressions of man as he travels through nature and beyond. Works include Beethoven's Pastoral Symphony, Strauss' Alpine Symphony and Villa-Lobos' Bachianas Brasileiras.
June 14 - 18, 2010
Nobody Ever Builds a Statue to a Critic –An exploration of composers' critiques, evaluations, and responses to their contemporaries.
June 7 - 11, 2010
Robert Schumann – A biography of the torrid life of one of Germany's early romantics, aired in celebration of his 200th birthday.
May 31 - June 4, 2010
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.
May 24 - 28, 2010
The Symphony, Part V – Symphonies of Sibelius, Rachmaninov, Nielsen and Ives.
May 17 - 21, 2010
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.
May 10 - 14, 2010
Poland – A five-part history of music in Poland.
May 3 - 7, 2010
Tchaikovsky, Part II – This week, we’ll continue our exploration of Peter Tchaikovsky, focusing on the latter part of his life, including his symphonies, ballets, and life at the Moscow Conservatory. Bill picks up in 1876 with Tchaikovsky’s Variations on a Rococo Theme, Op.33 for Cello and Orchestra and we close the week with his Symphony No. 6 in b minor, Pathetique, written in 1893 and premiered just days before his death. This week, Bill tells the story of Tchaikovsky’s failed marriage and his unusual relationship with his patroness Nadezhda von Meck.
April 26 - 30, 2010
Peter Tchaikovsky, Part I – Bill launches into the first part of a two part series on the Russian Romantic composer Peter Tchaikovsky. Though shunned by some other Russian composers as sounding “too Western”, Tchaikovsky was loved throughout the world as a great Russian composer. Caught between East and West, he created his own sound— a sound that to this day is still treasured and that Russians are proud to call their own. Bill starts with Mikhail Glinka, who broke from the Italian school to create the Russian school of music, and ends with excerpts of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake. Don’t miss this week and next, where we continue with the music of Peter Tchaikovsky.
April 19 - 23, 2010
Czech out those Bohemians – Composers from the lands around the present-day Czech Republic have made an indelible mark on music, We’ll examine their history and influence, from medieval times to the present, enjoying the music of Dvořák, Smetana, Suk, and the Benda family.
April 12 - 16, 2010
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.
April 5 - 9, 2010
It Takes Two to Tango – Bill starts by sharing tunes with two musical lines, where one line goes up while the other goes down to create a counter melody, to complex sonatas like Beethoven’s Kreutzer Sonata for violin and piano. EM will feature remarkable performances of musicians working in tandem playing Bach, Beethoven, and Mozart. We’ll also savor the great love duets of Verdi, Puccini, and Wagner. Oh, and, don’t miss the cat duets of Rossini and Ravel!
March 29 - April 2, 2010
Haydn and Mozart Quartets – String quartet music by Haydn and Mozart, who launched the form from obscurity to celestial heights. The first in a multiple-week series on the string quartet.
March 22 - 26, 2010
Spring is Here – Spring is here - at last! As the thermometer creeps above 32, we'll celebrate optimism, hope and rebirth through music. This week features Mahler, Haydn, Respighi and more.
March 15 - 19, 2010
The Roaring 20s – In the 1920s, concert halls rocked with everything from jazz to airplane propellers, radio became a multimillion dollar industry, and art and literature flowed like bathtub gin. This week, we'll sample "The Roaring 20s" in New York, Paris and Berlin.
March 8 - 12, 2010
Samuel Barber – Samuel Barber was only 28 years old when Arturo Toscanini premiered his Adagio for Strings in 1938 with the NBC Symphony Orchestra. He was an overnight success and became the most performed composer in the United States: His music is mostly unaffected by the modern tendencies of his time – he was out of step during the first half of the 20th century. Samuel Barber was as much a cosmopolitan as a romantic lyricist, and his writing unmistakably has its fixed stars: Bach, Brahms, and Fauré. We’ll explore his world, life, and music in this week’s program and finally face the inevitable question: A huge success at such a young age – a blessing or a curse?
March 1 - 5, 2010
Frédéric Chopin – A five-part biography to celebrate the 200th birthday of Chopin, whose invention and innovation had an indelible effect on the world of Romantic music and the piano.
February 22 - 26, 2010
Music for the Masses – Bill McGlaughlin explores the great compositions of the Latin Mass and beyond.
February 15 - 19, 2010
What Else Ya Got? – Have you ever wondered about composers who succeeded in writing one smashing piece, but were otherwise forgotten? This week, we'll get to know some of these immortals for their other compositions, including Dukas, Ponchielli and Glière.
February 8 - 12, 2010
It was a Lover and His Lass – Composers influenced by the elixir of love.
February 1 - 5, 2010
Schubertiade, Part II – Chamber music from one of Vienna's greatest musical poets, Franz Schubert.
January 25 - 29, 2010
Mozart at his Zenith – Beginning in 1786 at the first hearing of Mozart's opera The Marriage of Figaro, we’ll explore the stream of masterpieces, including operas, symphonies, piano concertos, and chamber works that Mozart wrote in the last five years of his life. He was in his early thirties and navigating the political life of a court composer in Vienna while partying with the passion of the young man that he was, and all the while producing one masterpiece after another. On November 20, 1791, Mozart took to his bed, and still he brought in one of his protégés to write notes and phrases down. On December 5 Mozart died, with his requiem mass unfinished. From these years alone, Mozart left a body of work that expresses a universe of imagination and emotions.
January 18 - 22, 2010
Tudor Music – Music from Tallis, Byrd, Henry VIII and other 16th and 17th-century English composers
January 11 - 15, 2010
Strings Plus One – This week we'll feature small string groups with a special guest addition.
January 4 - 9, 2010
Hit or Myth – The gods must be crazy! This week, we'll survey the trials and tribulations of mortals and immortals, brought to life by the likes of Berlioz, Gluck, Handel and more.
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