The WFMT Radio Network

WFMT Radio Network

The WFMT Radio Network

The Keeping Score Series: 13 Days When Music Changed Forever

Keeping Score

Genre: Documentary with Music
Length: 59 minutes
Frequency: 13 Weeks
DELIVERY TYPE: ContentDepot File transfer and CD
Optional Breaks: One 
Host: Suzanne Vega
Producer: San Francisco Symphony, Michael Tilson Thomas, Music Director
Underwriters: Evelyn and Walter Haas, Jr. Fund; The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation; and also supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Please Note: Stations have unlimited broadcasts. Please notify Tony Macaluso or Carol
Martinez each time you broadcast.

Due to the high demand from listeners all over the United States, The San Francisco Symphony
is offering the Keeping Score Series again for 1 year, beginning April 1, 2013.  We are making
this free series available on ContentDepot and CD.

The San Francisco Symphony's radio project, The Keeping Score Series:  13 Days When Music Changed Forever, is about musical revolutions-about the composers, compositions, and musical movements that changed the way people heard, or thought about, music.  Each program explores the historical backdrop and the musical precursors to the revolutionary change, as well as the lasting influence of that moment in music history.

This series is a follow up to one of the most broadcast classical music series of the last 27 years, American Mavericks, also produced by the San Francisco Symphony.  This time, instead of focusing on seismic shifts in American music during the 20th century, the series extends back to the 1600s and include Western and Eastern European music, as well as American music.

The production design includes musical excerpts mixed with commentary from the host, pop icon Suzanne Vega, as well as interviews with composers, musicologists, writers, and musicians.  Michael Tilson Thomas, Music Director of the San Francisco Symphony, is the key interview subject. 

Producer Tom Voegeli, who produced the Symphony's other radio series: The MTT Files and American Mavericks (both of which won Peabody Awards), is known as one of the leading audio producers in the United States.  He has received multiple awards for his work, including two Grammy Awards, a Prix Italia for Best Radio Drama, three Peabody Awards, several Audie Awards for the Best Book on Tape, and an Ohio State Award.  He is also known for his radio adaptations of the Star Wars films, as the creator of the long-running radio series Saint Paul Sunday, and as a theatrical sound designer.

The script writers are:
" Justin Davidson, music critic for New York Magazine and Newsday.  Mr. Davidson was a Pulitzer Prize winner in 2002.
" Tim Page, currently Professor of Journalism and Music at the University of Southern California and former music critic for The Washington Post, Newsday, and The New York Times.  Mr. Page was a Pulitzer Prize winner in 1997.
" Pierre Ruhe, former music critic for The Atlanta Journal Constitution and The Washington Post.
" Chloe Veltman, host of KALW'S Voice Box, a weekly radio series about the art of song, chief theater critic for SF Weekly, and a freelance writer whose work has appeared in The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Wall Street Journal, and the BBC Music Magazine, among others. 

The 13 days covered in the series will be:
" February 24, 1607:  The premiere of Monteverdi's L'Orfeo; a program about the dawn of opera
" April 22, 1723:  The town council of Leipzig appoints Bach as cantor; a program about Baroque music
" October 29, 1787:  The premiere of Mozart's Don Giovanni in Prague
" August 8, 1803:  Parisian piano maker Sebastien Erard gives one of his sturdy new creations to Beethoven and the composer was able to write more expressive and emotional music for the piano
" April 7, 1805:  The first public performance of Beethoven's Eroica
" August 13, 1876:  The launch of the first "Ring" cycle at Bayreuth
" May 6, 1889:  The opening day of the Exposition Universelle in Paris, when Debussy first heard gamelan music, and world music became a part of the Western European classical language
" January 5, 1909:  The premiere of Strauss's Elektra
" May 29, 1913:  The premiere of Stravinsky's ballet, The Rite of Spring
" December 26, 1926:  The premiere of Sibelius's Tapiola, his last major work before thirty years of silence
" January 10, 1931:  The debut of Charles Ives's Three Places in New England
" January 28, 1936:  The Soviet newspaper Pravda publishes the article Chaos Instead of Music, which signaled Stalin's displeasure with Shostakovich's opera Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk.
" November 4, 1964:  The premiere of Terry Riley's In C

Broadcast Rights:
Thisseries is available for unlimited broadcasts thru March 31, 2014!

This series is available free of charge to all stations. For more information, please contact Tony Macaluso at (773) 279-2114, email: or Carol Martinez at (773) 279-2112, email:




The Keeping Score Series: 13 Days When Music Changed Forever

Broadcast Schedule — Spring 2013

Please Note:  This is NOT a new series.  It is the same series from 2011!


PROGRAM #:  KEP 13-01 

RELEASE:  April 1, 2013


February 24, 1607:  The Premiere of Monteverdi's L'Orfeo

This is a program about the dawn of opera, but also about secular music becoming through-composed high art

(something that had been the exclusive purview of church music).  We'll look at precursors to L'Orfeo in Ancient

Greece and Rome, as well as Jacopo Perri's Euridice, written a generation before Monteverdi.



PROGRAM #:  KEP 13-02

RELEASE:  April 8, 2013


April 22, 1723:  The Town Council of Leipzig Appoints Bach as Cantor

An exploration of the Baroque and the never-ending legacy of Bach, through Mendelssohn, Stravinsky, Schoenberg,

Steve Reich, and The Doors' Light My Fire.



PROGRAM #:  KEP 13-03

RELEASE:  April 15, 2013


October 29, 1787:  The Premiere of Don Giovanni in Prague.

With this work, Mozart attains his maturity and writes a masterpiece that dominates opera forever afterwards, echoing

in Wagner and beyond.



PROGRAM #:  KEP 13-04

RELEASE:  April 22, 2013


August 8, 1803:  Parisian Piano Maker Sebastien Erard Gives One of His Sturdy New Creations to


With this instrument, the composer was able to set aside his fortepiano and write more expressive and emotional

music, beginning with the Waldstein Sonata.  New instruments and new technologies have inalterably changed music

many times, but the pace of change quickened in the 20th century, with the record player, the computer, and the




PROGRAM #:  KEP 13-05

RELEASE:  April 29, 2013


April 7, 1805:  The First Public Performance of Beethoven's Eroica

Beethoven's Symphony No. 3 changed our idea of what music could express.  Instead of classical form and rarified

beauty, this symphony lays out the full range of human feelings, from joy and love to hopelessness and pathos.



PROGRAM #:  KEP 13-06

RELEASE:  May 6, 2013


August 13, 1876:  The Launch of the First "Ring" cycle at Bayreuth

A program about the danger and appeal of Wagner's full-immersion mythology and why the composer was so

important, even to those who hated him.



PROGRAM #:  KEP 13-07

RELEASE:  May 13, 2013


May 6, 1889:  The Opening Day of the Exposition Universelle in Paris

The Exposition Universelle was where Debussy first heard gamelan music, and "world" music became a part of

Western European classical language.  Composers before and after Debussy frequently turned to vernacular sources

for inspiration, whether Brahms, Mahler, and Bartók incorporating folk melodies, Copland and Gershwin using the

rhythms of Latin dance, or Steve Reich quoting West African drumming.



PROGRAM #:  KEP 13-08

RELEASE:  May 20, 2013


January 25, 1909:  The Premiere of Elektra

Electra is Richard Strauss's farthest out work and perhaps the only piece from the days of early modernism that

retains its ability to shock today.



PROGRAM #:  KEP 13-09

RELEASE:  May 27, 2013


May 29, 1913:  The Premiere of the Ballet, The Rite of Spring

Stravinsky's completely original instrumentation and rhythms, and his use of dissonance, have made this work one of

the most important of the 20th century, not to mention the riot and ensuing scandal that caused this Paris premiere to

be one of the most shocking in all of performance history.



PROGRAM #:  KEP 13-10

RELEASE:  June 3, 2013


December 26, 1926:  The Premiere of Tapiola

This tone poem by Sibelius was his last major work before thirty years of silence, during which the world waited for

an eighth symphony that never came.  Sibelius in his time was seen as a nationalist along the lines of Grieg, but we

now hear his music as radical and astonishingly prescient.



PROGRAM #:  KEP 13-11

RELEASE:  June 10, 2013


January 10, 1931:  The Debut of Charles Ives's Three Places in New England

This work is performed for the first time to mild applause at a concert funded by the composer himself.  Mild

applause, but Ives's music was revolutionary.  Before him, American concert music was almost entirely based on

European models.  After him, through Copland, Cage, and beyond, American "classical" music found its own voice.



PROGRAM #:  KEP 13-12

RELEASE:  June 17, 2013


January 28, 1936:  The Publication in Pravda of the Article Chaos Instead of Music

This article signaled Stalin's displeasure with Shostakovich's opera Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk and led to the

composer's "redemption" in his Symphony No. 5.  This program will explore Shostakovich and the sometimes

mutually beneficial, sometimes terrifying, relationship between music and the totalitarian state.



PROGRAM #:  KEP 13-13

RELEASE:  June 24, 2013


November 4, 1964:  The Premiere of Terry Riley's In C

This piece, which debuted at the San Francisco Tape Music Center, and the minimalist outpouring that it sparked, were

a reaction to the rigid strictures of serialism and the stranglehold of the academic composers of the time.