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      Carl's Morning Quiz

      Carl Grapentine

      Carl's Morning Quiz: Today is the birthday of American composer Scott Joplin, perhaps born on this date in Linden, Texas in 1868. His music enjoyed a revival in the 1970s when it was used prominently in the film "The Sting." Who won the 1974 Academy Award for the music in "The Sting," mainly just for arranging Joplin's tunes? Answer >>


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      Quiz: Match the Composer to His Favorite Food

      Some composers ate to live, others lived to eat. Can you match the composer to his favorite food? more...

      Vote: What’s Your Favorite Piano Concerto?

      WFMT is celebrating great piano concertos, and we need your help! Vote for your favorites. Then middays starting December 7th, Lisa Flynn will play your 10 favorite piano concertos based on your votes, paired with a piano concerto you might not know. more...

      Recipes Composed by Composers

      Did you know that some of your favorite composers composed recipes as well? Here are a few culinary masterpieces composed by Rossini, Verdi, Ned Rorem, Puccini, and Janáček. more...

      High Kicks and High Notes in Lyric’s “Merry Widow”

      This weekend, The Merry Widow waltzes onto the stage of the Civic Opera House. The production has a star-studded cast that includes soprano Renée Fleming and baritone Thomas Hampson. But one of the most exciting aspects of The Merry Widow is the opportunity to marry grand singing with grand spectacle, particularly through dance. more...

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      Elisabeth Leonskaja and Friends – birthday tribute to virtuoso pianist

      Wigmore Hall, London
      A host of friends great and good help the Russian pianist celebrate her 70th, with music that ranged from Widmann to Schumann

      Russian pianist Elisabeth Leonskaja turned 70 this week. This birthday concert included appearances by nine other artists celebrating with her – indeed the focus of the event seemed reluctant to push herself forward, even though she took part in every piece.

      Only one of them, however, was a solo work: the Eleven Humoresques (2007) by the German clarinettist, composer and conductor Jörg Widmann. Schumann is the inspiration behind this substantial collection of miniatures – there’s the odd quotation and several clear references to his highly personalised art.

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      Simon Trpčeski review – intriguing glimpses of Chopin

      Barbican, London
      The pianist moved from subtle to solid textures in his determination to make us look beyond Chopin’s surface glitter

      How to make Chopin your own? That’s a challenge every pianist faces, and those who cheered Simon Trpčeski on to a perhaps excessive five encores at the end of this recital would say their man has met it. While his determination not to take the obvious approach led some of the smaller-scale pieces in intriguing directions, it arguably left the larger-scales ones wanting.

      He opened with the four Op 24 mazurkas. In the first, his left hand was grounded but his right was sometimes skittish and inclined to break away, creating an interesting tension within the piece’s apparent simplicity. These introspective pieces came over well, as did the first of the two Op 26 polonaises, which largely shared their pensive restlessness. But Op 26 No 2 needed brilliance and definition in the upwards reaching run near the start, and instead of that just had bulk and solidity. This became a recurring element: Trpčeski wasn’t going to let us fall into the trap of admiring Chopin’s surface glitter, but in his determination to focus our attention elsewhere he created some thick, cumbersome textures.

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      Dvorăk concerto at the Hallé - review: archive, 25 November 1892

      25 November 1892: Manchester’s music lovers flock to Lady Hallé’s performance of Dvorăk concerto

      Grand Concerto, Violin - Lady Hallé, in A minor, Op. 55 (first tune)........Dvorăk

      Lady Hallé’s admirers were in force last night. Some of them would, we believe, willingly have heard the Dvorăk concerto a second time if persistent applause could have brought such a consummation about. And the audience generally were at one with them in admiration of the work, even if their enthusiasm stopped short of a demand for a repetition. For the more experienced and the more discriminating listened to the work with a feeling that they were having developed before them one of the latest forms of modern musical thought.

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      travel feature

      Tour Vienna next May! Join Carl Grapentine in exploring some of his favorite musical sites, attending performances, and sightseeing. Then on to Salzburg!

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      Discover WFMT's Classical Italy next May! Join Peter van de Graaff on this exclusive twelve-day classical music lover's journey to "Bella Italia" next May. Imagine staying in the heart of Venice in a restored old abbey and experiencing Donizetti' opera La favorite at the historic La Fenice Opera House!

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      Cruise to Alaska and explore the "Frontier State" next July! Join fellow WFMT listeners and discover Alaska's unspoiled beauty and wildlife in its natural habitat on YMT Vacations' 12-day Grand Alaskan Cruise and Tour next July!

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      new releases

      Schubert: String Quintet

      Azica ACD-71304

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      Music of George Bristow

      New World Records 80768-2

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      Music of Stacy Garrop

      Cedille CDR 90000 160

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      Valentina Lisitsa: Nuances

      Decca 478 8435

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      Stephen Hough: Scriabin & Janacek

      Hyperion CDA-67895

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