Hear Milton String Quartet Live

Wednesday at 12:15, live from the Chicago Cultural Center


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. Here are 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 tell us your favorite Mexican composers in the comments below. A bust of the composer by Andrés Peraza (Photo: ...

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.

WFMT’s Top 10 Reads on World Book Day

Today is World Book Day, a yearly event celebrated worldwide on April 23rd and organized by UNESCO to promote reading, publishing and copyright. Looking for a good read to celebrate World Book Day? We at WFMT have picked some of our favorite reads to share with you.

Guggenheim Fellow Rudresh Mahanthappa On Creating Music that Defies Genre

Musicians today work across genres to create sounds that defy categorization, yet listeners crave categories. Saxophonist Rudresh Mahanthappa, whose many awards and honors include a Guggenheim Fellowship, has created sounds that defy categorization for his latest project, Song of the Jasmine, an interdisciplinary collaboration with Ragamala Dance that comes to the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago this weekend. Manhathappa was born in Italy to Indian ...

14 Facts About Haydn

As we celebrate Haydn’s Birthday on the air, enjoy these fun facts about the composer from hosts and Haydn lovers Peter Van de Graaff and Carl Grapentine. Share your favorite facts about Haydn with us in the comments below. 1. Haydn was born the year George Washington was born (1732) and died the year Abraham Lincoln was born (1809). 2. ...

$32 Million to the CSO

The legacy of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra received a boost on Thursday with the announcement of two multimillion-dollar gifts − among the largest in the orchestra’s history according to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association. Chicago-based Sam and Helen Zell acknowledged a $17 million dollar gift from the Zell Family Foundation for the endowment of the position currently held by music director Riccardo Muti. Maestro ...

Ana María Martínez: “Czech Was the Hardest”

Ana María Martínez is a seasoned performer on the stage of Chicago’s Civic Opera House. In the last year, she’s sung Mimì, Desdemona, and opens as Rusalka on Saturday. What is less dazzling, less conspicuous, has been her role as a role model to Chicago’s youth. The Puerto Rican-American soprano (who is fluent in Italian, English, and Spanish) frequently volunteers as a ...

Beethoven’s Smile: Yes, He Had One

“After the final chord, I looked up. The Master’s darkly glowing gaze was fixed upon me penetratingly. Yet suddenly a benevolent smile broke up his gloomy features, Beethoven became quite close, bent over me, laid his hand on my head and repeatedly stroked my hair. ‘Devil of a fellow’ he whispered, ‘such a young rascal!’ I suddenly plucked up courage. ...

Composer Exploration: Jacques Ibert

Jacques Ibert was born in Paris in 1890; his father was a businessman; his mother was a pianist. She began teaching him piano and violin at age 4. When young Jacques finished grade school, he found a job in a movie house, playing piano for silent films. In 1910 he enrolled at the Paris Conservatory, joining Arthur Honegger and Darius ...

Art and Music: Mendelssohn’s Watercolors

Felix Mendelssohn was a beacon in his world, whether as a conductor, composer, scholar, or painter. As a painter, he wallowed in images of man in dialogue with nature: landscapes with buildings or people under trees. The image to the right is of an unknown subject, but brings to mind the mysterious, churning sounds of his Hebrides Overture, and offers ...

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