Video | Justice Ginsburg on the death penalty and opera

What does opera have to do with the death penalty? Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, came to WFMT, Chicago’s fine arts and classical radio station, to explain.

Video | 5 Operas the Notorious RBG wants you to know

See which opera's Justice Ginsberg chose as her her five favorites during her visit to WFMT.

29 Composers and their Canine Companions

Have you ever heard the saying, "Behind every great composer is a cuddly canine?" No? Well these photos prove that every composer from Bernstein to Busoni had a four-legged friend as a constant companion. Enjoy these photos and tell us what music you and your dog(s) love to listen to together.

From YouTube to Lyric: Composer Jimmy López on his Operatic Debut

Composer Jimmy López never could have imagined that uploading some of his music on YouTube would land him his first opera commission, and at Lyric Opera of Chicago, no less. “I’ve been working towards this my whole career,” he said excitedly as he observed summer technical rehearsals for Bel Canto, his newly composed opera, at the Civic Opera House. Superstar soprano ...

WFMT’s Favorite Beach Reads

If you need recommendations for what to read when you're relaxing on the beach, look no further; our staff shares their favorite books about music.

Countertenor David Daniels on finding his voice, finding himself, and being married by Justice Ginsburg

David Daniels is “the most acclaimed countertenor of the day, perhaps the best ever,” to use the words of the New York Times. Though many know him best for portraying some of opera’s greatest heroes from Julius Caesar to Orpheus, he is also passionate about civil rights. Daniels spoke with WFMT from Edingburgh, where he is gearing up for a ...

15 Queer Composers You Should Know

Can you imagine a world without the music of Handel, Tchaikovsky, or Britten? These great composers of the past are just a few of many important musical figures who did not identify as heterosexual. Check out this list of 15 composers, some of whom are still living, and let us know who your favorite queer composers are in the comments below. Jean-Baptiste de ...

How One Chord Changed the World: “Tristan” at 150

If you’re a music lover, you may have heard of the so-called “Tristan chord” from Wagner’s opera Tristan und Isolde. Audiences were stunned to hear this infamous harmony when the opera premiered on June 10, 1865 in Munich, Germany. As Tristan turns 150, let’s take a look at what makes the Tristan chord so unique. The “Vorspiel,” or Prelude, to Tristan begins with with a “dissonant” chord. The terms “consonance” ...

Minnesota Orchestra To Perform Historic Concerts in Cuba

On Friday, May 15, at 7:00 pm Central and running until 10:00 pm, WFMT will join American Public Media for a live broadcast from the Teatro Nacional in Havana, Cuba, featuring the Minnesota Orchestra. The Orchestra is joined by pianist Frank Fernández and two Cuban choirs in an all-Beethoven program that features the “Choral Fantasy” and the “Eroica” symphony. Osmo Vanska conducts. This performance and broadcast are the ...

Star Soprano Kate Royal on the joys and difficulties of singing rare French works

Soprano Kate Royal has made her name singing in some of the oldest and most beloved operas in the repertoire by Monteverdi and Mozart, but the London native is also drawn to and sought-after to perform in more modern operas. In 2015, Royal made her Chicago Symphony Orchestra debut in a program of rarely performed French works: Ravel’s opera L’enfant et ...

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