QUIZ: What Fairy Tale Opera Are YOU?

Some of the most beloved operas of all time are inspired by fairy tales and other enchanting stories. What fairy tale opera are you?

In Their Own Words: Quotes From Artists and Friends of WFMT Who Died in 2020

2020 was a year of great loss for all; the music world was no exception. As we reflect on the year gone by, WFMT salutes the contributions of artists and friends who died this past year.

Don't Miss a Beat

The History of European Music May Owe More to Arab Culture Than We Realize

Globalization in recent decades has led to a number of exciting cross-cultural collaborations among musicians. However, we’ve always been a global society in which the sounds of many cultures mix together to create new forms of self-expression. Ever since the Middle Ages, musicians in Europe eagerly adopted musical traditions from around the world, from as far as the Indian subcontinent ...

This String Quartet Was Founded Next to a Taco Truck – Now It’s Headed to Juilliard

In September 2017, violinists Jason Issokson and Clara Kim, violist Dana Kelley, and cellist Joann Whang move to New York to begin a graduate residency at the Juilliard School. The four musicians play together as the Argus Quartet, which formed in one of the most unlikely of places: next to a taco truck.

9 Classic Short Stories Every Classical Music Lover Should Add to Their Summer Reading List

If you’re looking for quick summer reads to add to your list, give these music-themed short stories a try, with everything from Anton (Chekhov) to Zora (Neale Hurston). The best part: they’re all available for free online! We’ve included the links for easy reading on your phone, tablet, or laptop — perfect for reading while listening to your favorite summer ...

KAIA Kids Around the World – The Music of Argentina

In this musical adventure with KAIA String Quartet, learn about one of Argentina’s most well-known styles of music and dance: tango. Tango originated in the towns and cities surrounding Río de la Plata, a wide river that forms part of the border between Argentina and Uruguay. The  rhythms of tango come from both African and European musical traditions, including Afro-Uruguayan candombe and French ...

12 Polish Composers You Should Know (Who Aren’t Chopin)

Everyone loves the music of Frédéric Chopin, Poland’s most well-known composer. But, how many other Polish composers do you know? Learn more about Poland’s best composers from one of Poland’s best composers: Marta Ptaszyńska. Born in Warsaw and based in Chicago, Ptaszyńska has received many prestigious awards and honors for her work, including a Guggenheim Fellowship. Her output includes a diverse ...

VIDEO: Take a Spin Around Berlin, Music Capital of the World, with Carl Grapentine

When Carl Grapentine, host of WFMT’s Morning Program, first visited Berlin in 1965 as a student he immediately felt at home there. Since then, he’s been back 8 times and says that it now feels like he’s visiting an old friend. “It’s the history, physical beauty and, of course, the music of Berlin that I love.” He loves it so ...

The Earliest Opera Ever Written Is over 800 Years Old – and It’s by a Woman

Without Ordo virtutum, a sung morality play about the battle between human virtue and the devil’s temptation, opera as we now know it might not exist. And we have a woman to thank for that. Saint Hildegard of Bingen was a nun and scholar who made contributions to the fields of music, science, religion, and linguistics. On top of composing ...

The One Classical Album That Almost Caused Cuban Musician Roberto Fonseca to Quit Playing the Piano

Pianist and bandleader Roberto Fonseca has been nominated for Latin Grammys in the Best Jazz Album and Best Tropical Album categories. Though he said, “I don’t want people to call me just a jazz musician or a traditional Cuban musician,” in a recent interview at the WFMT studios. Fonseca has a diverse musical background and comes from a musical family. ...

Chiara String Quartet Plays Complete Bartók Quartets Completely By Heart

The Chiara String Quartet has dedicated itself to finding ways of making the musical experience exciting and engaging. In a recent project, the quartet recorded all of Béla Bartók’s quartets from memory and performed the complete cycle over two nights on September 7 and 8 at the 2016 Ravinia Festival. I spoke with three members of the quartet — Hyeyung Julie Yoon (violin), ...

The Best Classical Music to Serve at Your Next Cookout [Playlist]

The summer cookout is as American as apple pie and Appalachian Spring. As you fire up the grill to cook up hot dogs, hamburgers, and all of your other favorite summer foods, we have the perfect soundtrack for you. Click here to jump to our playlist, or scroll down to peruse some of our favorite American works, from classics like Gershwin’s Rhapsody in ...

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