Christopher Purdy

Classical Host

Host of Music in Mid-Ohio, Musica Sacra, Opera and More and the Columbus Symphony Orchestra live broadcasts. Christopher also hosts Classical 101 By Request every Friday from 1-3 p.m.

Christopher Purdy remains a New Englander at heart, with strong ties to Manhattan where he lived for many years. But he has strong Columbus ties: his late father-in-law, Wayne Rittenhouse, was the football coach of Central and Northland High Schools in Columbus. Christopher met his wife, Linda Rittenhouse, while they were both working at a food kitchen in New York City. They married in 1989; their daughter Kerry Megan was born in 1990. The family moved to Columbus in 1991. They are still adjusting to the Midwestern lifestyle. A city boy, Purdy maintains that he would be happy to cement over his entire yard spare me the lawn mower and the weeds!”

His favorite composers are Monteverdi and Bruckner. An accidental encounter with a beat-up recording of Mozart’s “Don Giovanni” at the age of eight changed Purdy’s direction from law school or the priesthood to one of classical music and public broadcasting. He was so captivated by the cover art, that he took the recording home, popped it on his battery-operated kiddy record player  and his life changed forever. He still has the recording.

Ways to Connect

Columbus Symphony

The Columbus Symphony and Opera Columbus present Giuseppe Verdi's Aida at the Ohio Theatre, at 8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 2, and 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 4. Rossen Milanov conducts.

I'm delighted that two fine local artists are playing featured roles: Brian Banion (Ramfis) and Robert Kerr (Pharaoh) — not to mention the superb all-volunteer Columbus Symphony Chorus, conducted by Ronald Jenkins.

This production of Aida will be broadcast at 1 p.m. Sunday, April 29 on Classical 101.

Ken Howard / The Metropolitan Opera

Opera Abbreviated is a Classical 101 podcast that previews The Metropolitan Opera's Live in HD series of performances beamed into cinemas worldwide.

The Met's new production of Giacomo Puccini's Tosca, everyone's favorite operatic potboiler, is the next feature, showing at 1 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 27. Staged by David McVicar, the production is conducted by Emmanuel Villaume and stars Sonya Yoncheva, Vittorio Grigolo and  Zelkjo Lucic.

color side profile photo of David Del Tredici at the piano
daviddeltredici.com

When I told composer David Del Tredici that I had taken one of his courses at Boston University in the 1970s, he asked, "Which one? Was it my course on lesbians and music? The Gamelan course?... Did you write a fugue for me?" (Yes, very badly.)

So began my recent phone conversation with a composer who has been working at the international level in music for over 50 years.

Among Del Tredici's career posts is a lifelong obsession with Lewis Carroll's "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland." Said fascination has resulted in a number of large-scale works by the 80-year-old composer, including his mammoth Final Alice, An Alice Symphony, Adventures Underground and Child Alice. 

"In Memory of a Summer Day," part one of Child Alice, won the Pulitzer Prize in music in 1980.

Ohio State University

Concerts @ Ohio State, presenting performances by the students and faculty of the School of Music at Ohio State University, begins a new broadcast season at 1 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 7.

These Sunday afternoon programs through March will be devoted to concerts performed in Weigel Hall and Mershon Auditorium on Ohio State's campus. Ensembles represented include the Ohio State University Symphony Orchestra, Men's Glee Club, Wind Symphony, Symphonic BandFlute Troupe and chamber music configurations from duets to small orchestras.

John Brantley / Flickr

My colleagues and I have each been asked to put together an hour of our favorite holiday music for broadcast during Christmas weekend.

I've never been any good at titles. Left to me, "The Great Gatsby" would have been called "Riding in Cars with Girls" or some such. I couldn't think of a title for Christopher Purdy's Christmas favorites — hmm, maybe that is a title — so Christmas with Christopher will have to do.

You're invited to share some time with me Christmas Eve at 7 p.m. I'll be playing an hour's worth of my favorites. Here, I'll tell you why some of these pieces are special to me.

cocoparisienne / Pixabay

These new recordings have brought me a lot of pleasure over the past few months. May they do the same for you.

Here are a few gift suggestions for the lovers of classical music in your life. (The recordings are available as downloads and, merciful God, as CDs.)

ProMusica Chamber Orchestra

The Southern Theatre hosts ProMusica Chamber Orchestra's annual Messiah sing-along at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 8. David Danzmayr conducts the wonderful ProMusica Chamber Orchestra we know and love, plus orchestra students and local music directors.

And the chorus? Well, you're the chorus. I'm the chorus. All of us who show up are the chorus.

Columbus Symphony Holiday Pops concert
Columbus Symphony

No matter how much any of us love family members who come home for the holidays, at some point we are all going to be stir-crazy and need some diversion, both tuneful and beautiful.

Here's a guide to some of Columbus' most-loved holiday offerings filling our theaters and concert halls over the next few weeks.

interior of St. Joseph Cathedral
Columbus Landmarks

Bundle up, put on your walking shoes and get yourselves ready for a tour of four beautiful downtown Columbus churches and an afternoon of music in sacred spaces. 

The Great Hallelujah Holiday Tour is a great way for you to get in the holiday spirit and support Classical 101 at the same time.

Join Columbus Landmarks and your favorite Classical 101 hosts Saturday, Dec. 2 to hear seasonal music and learn about the architecture and history of some of the landmark churches along Broad Street.

Fior Angelico / fiorangelico.org

Early Music in Columbus presents Fior Angelico in concert at 8 p.m. Friday,  Nov. 17 at St. Joseph Cathedral in downtown Columbus. The program, "Spanish Songs for Lamentation and Rejoicing," features music by Francisco Guerrero, Alonso Lobo and Tomás Luis de Victoria.

Fior Angelico, a Columbus chamber chorus of 16 singers, has typically performed annual concerts since its formation in 2006. The early music ensemble takes it name from Fior Angelico di Musica, "The Angelic Flower of Music," a 1547 music theory treatise by Fra Angelo da Picitono.

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