KAIA String Quartet – In Residence

WFMT is proud to present KAIA String Quartet as its first ensemble in residence. Victoria Moreira (violin), Naomi Culp (violin), Amanda Grimm (viola), and Hope Shepherd DeCelle (cello) are devoted to capturing the essence of Latin American culture through the medium of the string quartet. From May – July 2017, KAIA takes you on a musical journey throughout Latin America with daily segments, live broadcasts, and exclusive digital content that is fun for all ages.   Listen weekdays at 9:05 am and 6:00 pm to explore the music of Mexico, Venezuela, Uruguay, Brazil, Puerto Rico, Colombia, Cuba, Central America, and Argentina. Enjoy each segment again after it airs below, and discover more about the many kinds of music and culture in Latin America.


Music of Chicago’s Latino Composers

Stream Music by Chicago’s Latino and Latin-American Composers

KAIA String Quartet‘s journey exploring the music of Latin America ends in an unexpected place: right here in Chicago. KAIA, WFMT’s first ensemble in residence, will share the music of Chicago’s Latino and Latin-American composers weekdays from July 24-28 through daily segments that air at 9:05 am and 6:00 pm on WFMT. Find each segment below after it airs, and ...

From Polka to Mariachi, Discover Why Pilsen is One of Chicago’s Most Diverse Musical Melting Pots

If there’s any neighborhood in Chicago where a Czech swing orchestra and an Afro-Latin funk band can share a stage, it’s Pilsen. The neighborhood has been home to diverse music and musicians since its early history and today it remains a musical melting pot of traditions from around the world.

Music of Argentina

Stream Music by Argentina’s Greatest Composers

Explore music of Argentina’s greatest composers, past and present, as KAIA String Quartet takes you on a musical journey throughout Latin America. KAIA, WFMT’s first ensemble in residence, will share the music of Argentina weekdays from July 10-21 through daily segments that air at 9:05 am and 6:00 pm on WFMT. Find each segment below after it airs, and discover more Latin American music ...

Hear Astor Piazzolla’s tango take on Vivaldi’s “Four Seasons”

Vivaldi’s Four Seasons have delighted listeners for centuries. The collection of four concertos was part of a larger group of works he published called The Contest Between Harmony and Invention. Each of the concertos in The Four Seasons, or Le quattro stagioni in the original Italian, corresponds to a different season of the year, and are accompanied by poems that reflect upon spring (Concerto No. 1 in ...

KAIA Kids Around the World – The Music of Argentina

In this musical adventure with KAIA String Quartet, learn about one of Argentina’s most well-known styles of music and dance: tango. Tango originated in the towns and cities surrounding Río de la Plata, a wide river that forms part of the border between Argentina and Uruguay. The  rhythms of tango come from both African and European musical traditions, including Afro-Uruguayan candombe and French ...

Music of Central America and the Caribbean

Hear These Uncovered Piano Masterworks from Haiti

Haitian composer Ludovic Lamothe has been nicknamed the “Black Chopin” because of his virtuosic writing for the piano. Lamothe is scarcely the only composer from Haiti to compose incredible keyboard works. For centuries, Haitian composers have brought African, French, and Spanish influences together to create pieces – particularly for piano – that reflect the island nation’s cultural identity. Many of ...

Stream Music by the Best Composers of Central America and the Caribbean

Explore music of Central America and the Caribbean, past and present, as KAIA String Quartet takes you on a musical journey throughout Latin America. KAIA, WFMT’s first ensemble in residence, will share music from Central America and the Caribbean weekdays from July 3 – 7 through daily segments that air at 9:05 am and 6:00 pm on WFMT. Find each segment below after it ...

Music of Cuba

Stream Music by Cuba’s Greatest Composers

Explore music of Cuba’s greatest composers, past and present, as KAIA String Quartet takes you on a musical journey throughout Latin America. KAIA, WFMT’s first ensemble in residence, will share the music of Cuba weekdays from June 26-30 through daily segments that air at 9:05 am and 6:00 pm on WFMT. Find each segment below after it airs, and discover more Latin American music ...

The one classical album that almost caused Cuban musician Roberto Fonseca to quit playing the piano

Pianist and bandleader Roberto Fonseca has been nominated for Latin Grammys in the Best Jazz Album and Best Tropical Album categories. Though he said, “I don’t want people to call me just a jazz musician or a traditional Cuban musician,” in a recent interview at the WFMT studios. Fonseca has a diverse musical background and comes from a musical family. ...

Listen to the one Cuban singer that Omara Portuondo of Buena Vista Social Club wants everyone to hear

Performer Omara Portuondo is perhaps best known for her work with the Buena Vista Social Club, a Cuban musical group that became an international sensation in the 1990s. An Academy Award-nominated documentary film, The Buena Vista Social Club, helped to introduce the music of Cuba and Portuondo’s voice to the world. The film’s subsequent soundtrack went platinum, was #1 on the Billboard charts, ...

Music of Colombia

Stream Music by Colombia’s Greatest Composers

Explore music of Colombia’s greatest composers, past and present, as KAIA String Quartet takes you on a musical journey throughout Latin America. KAIA, WFMT’s first ensemble in residence, will share the music of Colombia weekdays from June 19-23 through daily segments that air at 9:05 am and 6:00 pm on WFMT. Find each segment below after it airs, and discover more Latin American ...

QUIZ: Latin American Food or Instrument?

Can you tell the difference between Latin American foods and instruments? Take this quiz and find out.

Music of Puerto Rico

Stream Music by Puerto Rico’s Greatest Composers

Explore music of Puerto Rico’s greatest composers, past and present, as KAIA String Quartet takes you on a musical journey throughout Latin America. KAIA, WFMT’s first ensemble in residence, will share the music of Puerto Rico weekdays from June 12-16 through daily segments that air at 9:05 am and 6:00 pm on WFMT. Find each segment below after it airs, and discover more Latin American ...

Why the Beats of Bomba and Plena are as Essential to Puerto Rican Culture as Beans and Rice

Arroz con gandules – a version of beans and rice using pigeon peas – is a staple of Puerto Rican cuisine. Because the dish is so affordable to prepare, it nourishes people from all walks of life and economic backgrounds. Bomba and plena, two forms of Puerto Rican folk music, have similarly nourished the commonwealth by uplifting working-class narratives and ...

10 Instrumental Covers of “Despacito” To Make You Swoon

In January 2017, singer Luis Fonsi released “Despacito,” a reggaeton-pop song featuring rapper Daddy Yankee. “Despacito” has since become the first Spanish-language single to reach No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 since “Macarena” (Bayside Boys Mix) held the spot in 1996. The track’s music video depicts Fonsi and Yankee performing in their native San Juan, Puerto Rico, showcasing shots of ...

Music of Brazil

Stream Music by Brazil’s Greatest Composers

Explore music of Brazil’s greatest composers, past and present, as KAIA String Quartet takes you on a musical journey throughout Latin America. KAIA, WFMT’s first ensemble in residence, is sharing the music of Brazil weekdays from May 29 – June 9 through daily segments that air at 9:05 am and 6:00 pm on WFMT. Find each segment below after it airs, and discover ...

KAIA Kids Around the World – The Music of Brazil

WFMT is proud to present KAIA Kids Around the World, a new web series that explores music from across the globe. As WFMT’s first ensemble in residence, KAIA String Quartet is taking WFMT fans on a musical adventure throughout Latin America from May – July 2017. With nine different stops throughout Latin America, KAIA is exploring the music of Brazil from May ...

Hear Music by Chiquinha Gonzaga, the Brazilian Composer Who Was 100 Years Ahead of Her Time

When Brazilian pianist, conductor, and composer Chiquinha Gonzaga’s first husband told her to choose him or music, she replied, “Well, sir, my husband, I do not understand life without harmony.” Shortly after, they parted ways. The stigma of divorce, however, followed her. Shunned by her own family, Gonzaga was left to fend for herself in Rio de Janeiro. During the ...

Music of Uruguay

Stream Music of Uruguay’s Greatest Composers

Explore music of Uruguay’s greatest composers, past and present, as KAIA String Quartet taking you on a musical journey throughout Latin America. KAIA, WFMT’s first ensemble in residence, is sharing the music of Uruguay weekdays from May 22 – 26 through daily segments that air at 9:05 am and 6:00 pm on WFMT. You’ll hear works by Abel Carlevaro, Eduardo Fabini, and ...

How the Complex Rhythms of Colonialism Created One of Uruguay’s Most Celebrated Musical Traditions

Though Uruguay is one of the least populous countries in South America, every year it hosts the world’s longest Carnaval. Carnaval in Uruguay would not be complete without candombe, an Afro-Uruguayan performance tradition that is centuries old but still celebrated today. Candombe is rooted in the culture of enslaved peoples who were brought to Uruguay from Africa during the early ...

KAIA Kids Around the World: The Music of Uruguay

WFMT is proud to present KAIA Kids Around the World, a new web series that explores music from across the globe. As WFMT’s first ensemble in residence, KAIA String Quartet is taking WFMT fans on musical adventures throughout Latin America from May – July 2017. With nine different stops throughout Latin America, KAIA is exploring the music of Uruguay May ...

Music of Venezuela

Stream Music of Venezuela’s Greatest Composers

Explore Venezuela's musical traditions with KAIA String Quartet and hear music by Gabriela Montero, Juan Bautista Plaza, and more.

Pianist Gabriela Montero Explains How Music Underscores Protests and Propaganda in Venezuela

When pianist, composer, and improviser Gabriela Montero left her native Venezuela at the age of eight, she was motivated by the piano, not politics. Her family moved to the United States “for me to continue my musical studies,” she said in a recent interview. “At that point, my teacher had left and I didn’t have anyone I could work with. ...

KAIA Kids Around the World: The Music of Venezuela

The cultural traditions of Venezuela are as rich as its biodiversity. In the KAIA Kids adventure to Venezuela, learn about a special style of Venezuelan music and dance called joropo.

Music of Mexico

Stream Music of Mexico’s Greatest Composers

Explore Mexico's musical traditions with KAIA String Quartet, and hear works by Carlos Chavez, Silvestre Revueltas, Arturo Márquez, and more.

This Waltz Once Attributed to Strauss Is Actually by Indigenous Mexican Composer Juventino Rosas

The waltz is typically associated with composers from German speaking countries. The word waltz is, after all, German. Viennese composers like Beethoven and Schubert composed waltzes. Viennese composer Johann Strauss II was known as the “Waltz King.” But at the same time the Viennese were waltzing around ballrooms and clinking their champagne glasses, the people of Mexico were enjoying waltzes, ...

How Lydia Mendoza, the First Queen of Tejano Music, Crossed Borders and Shaped a Tradition

Decades before fans called Selena Quintanilla-Pérez the Queen of Tejano music, singer and 12-string guitarist Lydia Mendoza held the crown as Tejano music’s first female icon. Born in 1916 to parents who migrated to Texas during the Mexican Revolution, Mendoza began her music career in a family band that performed on street corners and in open-air markets to make ends ...

KAIA Kids Around the World: The Music of Mexico

Mexico is home to many people and musical traditions. In the KAIA Kids adventure to Mexico, the quartet explores the history of mariachi and teaches you one of most popular mariachi tunes today, “México lindo y querido.”

WFMT’s In Residence program is made possible by the generous support of the Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation.