Introductions

Saturdays at 11:00 am

Members of the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestras perform during a live broadcast of Introductions from Millennium Park. (Photo: Tipping Point Photography)

Hear talented pre-college classical musicians from the Chicago area

Introductions is WFMT’s weekly Saturday morning program that features talented pre-college classical musicians in the Chicago area. We invite soloists and chamber ensembles to perform live in WFMT’s Fay & Daniel Levin Performance Studio. Large ensembles, including orchestras, choirs, and bands, are recorded at their home venues and broadcast at later dates. The program also features youth music competition winners. While many Introductions alumni pursue careers outside of music, some have gone on to study at some of the most prestigious music schools around the world and maintain careers as professional musicians.

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American Composer Highlights for July 4

July 4, 2020

Independence Day falls on a Saturday this year, so Introductions brings an all-American composers episode. We feature orchestral, chamber and solo repertoire written by Americans born in the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries.

Mariachi Herencia de México’s latest album

June 27, 2020

This Saturday we feature Esencia Vol. 2, the fourth and newest album from Chicago ensemble Mariachi Herencia de México. Founded four years ago as a student group in Chicago Public Schools and still comprised of teenagers, the group’s debut album was nominated for a Grammy. This most recent release is a collection of different styles within mariachi: classics from the ...

Encore Broadcast | 2020 New Music School Concerto Competition

June 20, 2020

On Saturday’s program, hear the top three performances in New Music School‘s recent Concerto Competition. A total of 36 NMS students aged 8 to 15 entered the competition. Of those entrants, 16 had the chance to perform concerto movements with the Chicago Arts Orchestra and conductor Vladimir Kulenovic. The top three places were awarded at the finalists’ concert on January ...

Aurora Piano Quartet, Lakeshore Winds, and The Bone Rangers

June 13, 2020

This Saturday, we feature three chamber groups: one each of strings, winds, and brass. We also talk to one member of each group: pianist Colin Song, about to major in Neuroscience at Emory University; bassoonist Abigail Lopez, about to study Music at DePaul; and freshman trombonist Owen Riordan, about being the newest member of an established quartet. Aurora Piano Quartet ...

No Introductions | WFMT Spring Membership Drive

June 6, 2020

WFMT’s Spring Membership Drive takes place this morning. You can support original programming like Introductions, and help invite our finest young performers back into the studio once we can safely reopen. Donate securely online at wfmt.com/donate.

No Introductions | WFMT Spring Membership Drive

May 30, 2020

WFMT’s Spring Membership Drive takes place this morning. You can support original programming like Introductions and to invite our finest young performers back into the studio once we can safely reopen. Donate securely online at wfmt.com/donate.

Encore Broadcast | Masha Lakisova, violin

May 23, 2020

On Saturday, we have an encore broadcast featuring violinist Masha Lakisova of Vernon Hills. Masha studies violin at The Juilliard School’s Pre-College Division with Li Lin and Itzhak Perlman. This program was originally broadcast on September 7, 2019. A little note: the Lakisovas’ performance of Jenő Hubay’s Carmen Fantasy will be available on an exclusive WFMT compilation in the upcoming ...

2020 Fischoff Medalists: Dasani String Quartet & The Purple Hippopotami

May 16, 2020

This Saturday, we profile two medalists in the very recent Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition. This year, the competition pivoted to a virtual format due to the coronavirus pandemic, and ensembles were judged on their audition recordings. Of the twelve Chicago-area ensembles in the quarter-finals, two won medals. We hear from those two, as well as The Bone Rangers, winners ...

CYSO: A Celebration of Black Composers

May 9, 2020

This weekend on Introductions, we feature a new double CD from Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestras. It’s called A Celebration of Black Composers, and was released during Black History Month 2020. We hear from their full orchestras, a steel pan orchestra, and the Jazz Orchestra jamming with the flagship Symphony Orchestra on some Duke Ellington – 123 musicians in total! Video: Address ...

Alumni as featured on Chicago Tonight

May 2, 2020

This weekend, we look to a couple of stories filed by our colleagues down the stairs and down the hall: the TV journalists who work for Chicago Tonight on WTTW Channel 11. They checked in with students and alumni of the Music Institute of Chicago Academy. We hear those stories, plus a selection of archival recordings from the Introductions vault. ...

2020 New Music School Concerto Competition

April 25, 2020

On Saturday’s program, hear the top three performances in New Music School‘s recent Concerto Competition. A total of 36 NMS students aged 8 to 15 entered the competition. Of those entrants, 16 had the chance to perform concerto movements with the Chicago Arts Orchestra and conductor Vladimir Kulenovic. The top three places were awarded at the finalists’ concert on January ...

Encore Broadcast | 2020 Crain-Maling Foundation Chicago Symphony Orchestra Young Artists Competition Winner

April 18, 2020

We feature the winner of the 2020 Crain-Maling Foundation Chicago Symphony Orchestra Young Artists Competition: 17-year-old violinist Isabella Brown of Gurnee. Isabella studies violin with Almita Vamos at the Music Institute of Chicago’s Academy. Isabella performed the first movement from Beethoven’s Violin Concerto during the final round of the competition at Symphony Center on Saturday, March 7, with Michael Christie ...

Encore Broadcast | Parquarious Winds

April 11, 2020

On Saturday’s broadcast, we feature the Parquarious Winds of the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra (CYSO). The quintet ran in the 2018-2019 school year. In addition to playing in regular CYSO recitals, the group performed at a Chamber Showcase recital at PianoForte and with the Orion Ensemble. As representatives of the CYSO Ambassadors Program, the group gave performances at two Chicago ...

Encore Broadcast | String Highlights

April 4, 2020

We celebrate string instruments! From violin and cello features to piano trios and string quartets, we have an incredible range of repertoire from Introductions performances in the past year. For more information about this broadcast, click here.

Encore Broadcast | Piano Highlights

March 28, 2020

Celebrating the piano! We revisit solo piano performances from Introductions in 2019, featuring Alice Zhang, Myroslav Mykhailenko, Kimberly Han, Yerin Yang, and Ashley Kim. To listen again, click here.

2020 Crain-Maling Foundation Chicago Symphony Orchestra Young Artists Competition Winner

March 21, 2020

On Saturday’s broadcast, we feature the winner of the 2020 Crain-Maling Foundation Chicago Symphony Orchestra Young Artists Competition: 17-year-old violinist Isabella Brown of Gurnee. Isabella studies violin with Almita Vamos at the Music Institute of Chicago’s Academy. Isabella performed the first movement from Beethoven’s Violin Concerto during the final round of the competition at Symphony Center on Saturday, March 7, ...

Encore Broadcast | Noelle Naito, 17, violin

March 14, 2020

On Saturday’s encore broadcast, we feature 17-year-old violinist Noelle Naito of Elkridge, Maryland. Noelle studies at the Music Institute of Chicago Academy. To listen to the broadcast again, click here.

Encore Broadcast | Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra Performs at Symphony Center

March 7, 2020

On Saturday’s encore broadcast, we feature highlights from the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra’s November 2019 concert at Symphony Center. For more information about this program, please click here.

Encore Broadcast | Noelle Naito, 17, violin

February 29, 2020

On Saturday’s encore broadcast, we feature 17-year-old violinist Noelle Naito of Elkridge, Maryland. Noelle studies at the Music Institute of Chicago Academy. To listen to the broadcast again, click here.

Encore Broadcast | String Highlights

February 22, 2020

On Saturday’s encore broadcast, we feature our string highlights program. To listen to this program again, please click here.

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