Live broadcasts from the WFMT studios with some of today’s best artists.

Our live afternoon series of “impromptu” music and conversation features some of today’s most sought-after musicians from around the world. Previous guests on Impromptu have included cellist Yo-Yo Ma, mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato, and author Salman Rushdie. Other guests have included Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, tenor Joseph Calleja, violinist Joshua Bell, and the vocal ensemble Chanticleer. Broadcast live from the Levin Performance Studio at WFMT, the program also features local performers who are vital to Chicago’s vibrant musical culture.

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Concerto Köln with Shunske Sato, violin

February 28, 2020

Hear a live performance by Concerto Köln, a period chamber orchestra from Germany, with the ensemble’s distinctive concertmaster, Shunske Sato.

Michael Barenboim + The West-Eastern Divan Ensemble

February 20, 2020

Founded in 1999, the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra brings together Arab and Israeli musicians as a means to defy fierce political divides in the Middle East and globally. The West-Eastern Divan Ensemble, led by the orchestra’s concertmaster Michael Barenboim, expresses their highly praised artistry through an intimate chamber music format.

Stephane Wrembel, guitar

February 6, 2020

Hear French guitarist Stephane Wrembel celebrate the Gypsy spirit of Django Reinhardt.

Aizuri Quartet

January 17, 2020

Impromptu proudly presents the award-winning Aizuri Quartet whose debut album Blueprinting was nominated for a 2019 Grammy Award.

Escher String Quartet

January 13, 2020

  Tune in to hear the marvelous Escher String Quartet perform Debussy’s only string quartet, the first truly Impressionist-style chamber music.

Tal & Groethuysen Duo

January 9, 2020

Israeli Yaara Tal and German Andreas Groethuysen formed a piano duo in 1985 for a single concert and they’ve been celebrating that rich repertoire ever since.  

Patrick Dupré Quigley and singers from Music of the Baroque

December 20, 2019

Guest conductor Patrick Dupré Quigley, founder and artistic director of the vocal ensemble Seraphic Fire, leads a Music of the Baroque chorus in music for the holiday season.

California Guitar Trio

December 5, 2019

Paul Richards, Bert Lams, and Hideyo Moriya have been collaborating since 1991. It’s a great pleasure to welcome the California Guitar Trio back to Impromptu.

Chamber Music Chicago

October 4, 2019

Founded in 2019, Chamber Music Chicago presents performances by some of today’s leading artists. Violinists Janet Sung and David Bowlin, violist Ann Marie Brink, and cellists Peter Stumpf and Michael Mermagen will perform Schubert’s String Quintet in C Major live on Impromptu.

Alon Goldstein, piano

September 9, 2019

Hailed as one of the most original and sensitive artists of his generation, Israeli pianist Alon Goldstein returns to WFMT’s Levin Performance Studio to perform on Impromptu.   At Ravinia, on Sunday, September 8, he’ll share a program of music inspired by Domenico Scarlatti.

Philippe Quint, violin, and Marta Aznavoorian, piano

August 19, 2019

Grammy nominated artists violinist Philippe Quint and pianist Marta Aznavoorian showcase their collaborative album, Chaplin’s Smile. Tune in to hear a collection of arrangements for violin and pian o of songs composed by Charlie Chaplin for his most well-known films.

Anne Akiko Meyers, violin

August 16, 2019

Before performing the Barber Violin Concerto at Ravinia with the Lucerne Symphony Orchestra, violinist Anne Akiko Meyers returns to WFMT’s Levin Studio to perform live on Impromptu. Want to attend the concert? As a WFMT listener, join general manager George Preston and host Candice Agree for an exclusive pre-concert party, then get two-for-one seats for the Lucerne Symphony Orchestra and ...

Pablo Sáinz Villegas, guitar

May 20, 2019

Global cultural ambassador and “soul of the Spanish guitar,” Pablo Sáinz Villegas makes his long-awaited return to Impromptu.

Solera Quartet

May 9, 2019

Acclaimed by critics as “top-notch, intense, stylish, and with an abundance of flare and talent” and “one of the foremost young string quartets,” the Solera Quartet has quickly gained a reputation for their fiery musical expression, poetic sensibility, entrepreneurial acumen, and exceptional dedication to social initiatives.

Alisa Weilerstein, cello, Sergey Khachatryan, violin, and Inon Barnatan, piano

May 6, 2019

Three exciting soloists cellist Alisa Weilerstein, violinist Sergey Khachatryan, and pianist Inon Barnatan, return to WFMT’s Levin performance studio to perform Beethoven’s Ghost Piano Trio in D Major.

Juan Falú

April 23, 2019

The great Argentine folkloric guitarist and composer Juan Falú makes his Impromptu debut with an instrumental performance. See him in concert at the Old Town School of Folk Music later this evening.

Beatrice Rana, Piano

February 25, 2019

Italian pianist Beatrice Rana is the 2013 Cliburn Competition silver medalist, and a recent winner of Gramophone’s Young Artist of the Year Award. She made her Chicago debut at Symphony Center on Sunday, February 24, 2019.

Lincoln Trio

February 21, 2019

Music of Turina and Fauré on this Impromptu. Marta Aznavoorian, David Cunliffe, and Desirée Ruhstrat named the Lincoln Trio after the ensemble’s place of origin: the heartland of the United States and the land of Lincoln.

Parker Quartet with Richard O’Neill, viola, and Edward Arron, cello

February 1, 2019

Acclaimed violist Richard O’Neill and elegant cellist Edward Arron join the Grammy Award-winning Parker Quartet for a live performance.

Cavatina Duo

January 15, 2019

The Cavatina Duo brings together Spanish flutist Eugenia Moliner and Bosnian guitarist Denis Azabagic.  Hear them play live with the “style, sympathy, and technical aplomb” that captivated Fanfare Magazine as well as fans around the globe.

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