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      Carl's Morning Quiz

      Carl Grapentine

      Carl's Morning Quiz: Actor, director, writer, and producer Orson Welles was born 100 years ago today—May 6, 1915 in Kenosha, Wisconsin. As a boy he lived many places including Chicago. But asked years later "where is home," he said "Woodstock, IL." His very first film was Citizen Kane which he co-wrote, produced, directed, and starred in—a film that tops many lists as the greatest ever made. Who wrote the musical score for Citizen Kane? Answer >>


      Chicago Classical Calendar

      Use the calendar below to browse upcoming
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      Star Soprano Kate Royal Makes CSO Debut in Rare French Works

      Star soprano Kate Royal makes her Chicago Symphony Orchestra debut this week in a program of rarely performed French works: Ravel’s opera L’enfant et les sortilèges and Debussy’s cantata La damoiselle élue. The program, titled Salonen Conducts Ravel, is part of the CSO’s French Reveries and Passions Festival, curated by composer and conductor Esa-Pekka Salonen himself. Royal, who has more... more...

      5 Mexican Composers You Should Know on Cinco de Mayo

      Celebrate Cinco de Mayo by learning more about Mexico’s most celebrated composers of the past and present. Program Host Candice Agree and Interactive Content Producer Stephen Raskauskas have picked 5 Mexican composers you should know because of their incredible contributions to the world of music. Read more about some of Mexico’s most influential composers below, and more... more...

      INTERVIEW: Lang Lang on His Lyric Recital

      World-renowned pianist Lang Lang spoke with WFMT about his only Chicago appearance this season – a one-night-only concert at Lyric Opera of Chicago on Saturday, May 9, 2015. Read more about his program, which includes Tchaikovsky’s Seasons, Bach’s Italian Concerto, and Chopin’s Scherzi, in the interview below. And, tune in to 98.7 WFMT or stream online every more... more...

      6 Songs to Welcome the Merry Month of May

      “April is the cruelest month,” T.S. Eliot famously wrote. But May is here, and what better way to welcome this merry month than with music? Here are six songs to help you say goodbye to April showers and say hello to May flowers, all of which you can hear on the Morning Program with Carl more... more...

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      Webern: Songs, String Quartet etc CD review – perfectly etched miniatures

      Arnold/Booth/Greenberg/Fred Sherry Quartet/Philharmonia/Craft

      In the late 1950s, Robert Craft was the driving force behind the first-ever recordings of the complete works of Anton Webern. That set, for CBS, was hugely important at the time, for though Webern had become a major influence on the composers of the post-1945 generation – and, thanks to Craft, on Stravinsky’s late music too – his music was still rarely performed, and remained little known to the wider musical public. Other conductors, most notably Pierre Boulez, have subsequently emulated those pioneering efforts, and seven years ago Craft returned to the music once again, beginning a new Webern series for Naxos. This latest collection fills in some of the gaps in that survey, though in fact Craft takes charge of just one performance here, that of the Cantata No 1, Op 29, which he recorded in London with soprano Claire Booth and the Philharmonia in 2008.

      Five sets of songs with piano, sung with remarkable poise and warmth by soprano Tony Arnold accompanied by pianist Jacob Greenberg, dominate the disc. They range right across Webern’s career, from the Op 2 and 3 settings of Stefan George (composed in 1908 and 1909, just after he ended his studies with Schoenberg and had begun to stretch the harmonic boundaries of his music), to the Op 23 and Op 25 songs on quasi-mystical texts by Hildegard Jone (from 1934, when he was already tailoring 12-note technique to his purposes). What all the songs have in common, though, is brevity: each is a perfectly etched miniature, a nugget of impacted lyricism, and Arnold unwraps them with immense care.

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      Monteverdi Choir/Gardiner review – wonderfully committed and scrupulously focused

      Wigmore Hall, London
      A disparate programme of Monteverdi, Schubert and Brahms was linked by themes of love and dancing

      The Monteverdi Choir’s Wigmore concert, with its founder-conductor John Eliot Gardiner and the English Baroque Soloists, was an evening of two very disparate stylistic halves linked by themes of love and dancing. Monteverdi’s pastoral Tirsi e Clori, graciously informing us that “all that is best we learn from the dance”, rounded off a long opening group of the composer’s madrigals. After the interval, choruses and part-songs by Schubert and Brahms were brought to a close by the latter’s Op 52 set of Liebeslieder Walzer, with its amatory games and rituals whirling away in three-four time.

      The Monteverdi Choir has dominated the choral scene worldwide for more than 50 years now, and their singing remains wonderfully committed and scrupulously focused. Just occasionally, however, the scale felt too big. Gardiner used a choir of 19, with the soloists drawn from among its members. Liebeslieder Walzer sounded gorgeous, though the piece itself works better in its original version for four solo singers: with a bigger body of voices at full throttle, the counterpoint can blur, and Brahms’s playfulness assumes a curiously aggressive edge.

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      Back to baroque: Max Richter's Vivaldi remix comes full circle in Sydney

      Australian Brandenburg Orchestra is ‘hardcore’ for tackling his 21st century Four Seasons on the period instruments of Vivaldi’s time, says Richter

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      travel with wfmt

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      An Exclusive Classical Music Tour through the City of Lights with WFMT! Join Carl Grapentine and fellow opera lovers in May as we tour our favorite European opera destinations in Paris.

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      WFMT Santa Fe Opera Tour Join Carl Grapentine and other fellow opera lovers this August as we tour one of our favorite domestic opera destinations in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

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      Discover the Best of Scandinavia this August! Join Peter van de Graaff on this exclusive classical music journey to Sweden, Denmark and Norway.

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      Discover the incomparable beauty of Italy's history, culture and art! Join Suzanne Nance for an incredible journey to Italy.

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      Join Bill McGlaughlin for a once-in-a-lifetime journey to Budapest, Vienna and Prague!

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      China Tour and Yangtze River Cruise Join WFMT listeners on a legendary China tour and Yangtze River cruise!

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      The Queen Mary 2 Celebrate Cunard's 175th anniversary!

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      new releases

      Music of Tchaikovsky

      SFS Media 821936-0062-2

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      Frottole: Songs of Renaissance Italy

      Naxos 8.573320

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      Lawes: The Royal Consort

      Linn Records CKD-470 (2 CDs)

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      Romantic Piano Quartets

      DG B0022906-02

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      CPE Bach: Harpsichord Sonatas

      Paraty 515501 (2 CDs)

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