Monday - Friday at 7:00 pm
Exploring Music is an adventure — an expedition through the world of classical music. We pick a theme each week and follow the music wherever it leads us. Over the years we’ve explored Shakespeare and music, have followed the lives of many composers (a sort of five-part mini-series), and visited the music of various locales — Paris, Venice, Spain, Hungary, the Pacific Rim. Each five-episode program is a musical journey that focuses on a particular, genre, music festival, or classical theme. It’s a sort of Outward Bound for music, with Bill McGlaughlin as our guide to make sure we all get home safe and sound.
Listeners' emailed suggestions have played a very important role in choosing themes. We’ve recorded over two hundred adventures, and the ideas keep turning up. We don’t think we’ll exhaust the possibilities. Exploring Music is familiar and welcoming, and is where you feel at home on your first visit and can’t wait to get back to sample what the series has come up with for its next five-episodes.
The player below features a continuous five hour loop of the most recent Exploring Music episode. Listen to the past two weeks of Exploring Music here.
Yin and Yang: The Play of Opposites, Part 1
November 28, 2022
The idea for this two-week Exploration came from a listener who suggested we explore music of “great calm”, music which seems to gently pick us up and float us away from this earth. Bill liked the idea very much and immediately started sketching a week of the Romantics, from Berlioz to Mahler. But as he went along, he started to ...
Music of Scandinavia
November 21, 2022
The lighter these northern lands are in the summer just means the darker the winters will be, and these dark winters are in the living tissue of every Scandinavian. Their movies, orchestral works, poems, and paintings are comfortably at home expressing deep, dark emotions. Exploring Music has featured the works of Grieg and Nielsen, but there are a great many ...
Wunderkinder – Musical Prodigies, Part II
November 14, 2022
More performers and composers whose exceptional musical gifts emerged at an early age are our subject this week. It’s amazing to think that many of these musicians, like Mendelssohn, are still best known today for works that they composed in their early teens. Conductor Eugene Ormandy said that all his violinists were prodigies, so we end the week with Nikolai ...
Yin and Yang: The Play of Opposites, Part 2
December 5, 2022
This week we continue to hold on to the dragon’s tail listening to the pull of musical opposites. Starting with Samuel Barber and Francisco Tárrega, only Bill knows where this week’s musical yin and yang will end! Heaven, Earth, or the abyss!
Haydn and Mozart Quartets
December 12, 2022
Mozart’s six “Haydn” Quartets were dedicated and lovingly handed to Joseph Haydn, like a father entrusting his sons to a friend to protect and guide them. When Haydn first started composing for the string quartet, the first violinist was the star, actually standing in front of the other three players. Ninety-nine Haydn string quartets later, the form had evolved into ...
Fit for a King
December 19, 2022
“We’re going to have a ball this week,” Bill says, “listening to some glorious music and, in most cases, giving credit where credit is due, to the people that commissioned these pieces.” Bill ushers in George I in England, whose favorite composer was Handel— both men were German born, and it’s George I who started the tradition that continues today ...