Classical 101

Classical 101 is the only classical music station in Central Ohio. The Classical 101 hosts provide insight into classical music news from Columbus and around the world. 

We also present a series of podcasts as well as archived audio from musicians who perform live in our studio

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat

In the final year of his life, Mozart composed his piano variations on the aria Ein Weib ist das herrlichste Ding – "A Wife Is the Most Glorious Thing" – from a Singspiel by his friend the singer and composer Benedikt Schack. Judging solely from Mozart's correspondence, Schack's aria could easily have served as Mozart's personal theme song.

color photo o a read heart lit up with red lights, surrounded by straw-colored reeds lit up with clear lights
Susanne Nilsson / Creative Commons/Flickr

Albert Einstein, that great scientist of the human heart, is credited with having once said that gravitation cannot be blamed for people falling in love. It’s a cute line, and certainly true enough. Beyond that, it subtly points up the clumsy recklessness and the potentially harmful implications of the metaphor of “falling” in love. As we all know, there’s much more to love than a rapid pulse, and that’s why, as the Gen-Xers and younger like to say, it’s complicated.

Being a Pulitzer Prize-winning composer puts you in a rarified place in the world of music. Samuel Barber and Gian-Carlo Menotti each won two, as did Elliott Carter and Walter Piston.

Wikipedia, public domain

Every week is concert week on Classical 101. Tune in to hear everything from Ravel to Bach with witty insight and conversation from hosts in-the-know. Here's a sneak peek of what's on the menu for next week, January 31 through February 6, 2016. 

Weekly Highlights for February 14th-20th: 

Sunday, February 14th: 

1:00 PM, Concerts@Ohio State with Christopher Purdy, album cover

Indian musician Ravi Shankar said that the purpose of Indian music is to lead the listener "to a realm of awareness where the revelation of the true meaning of the universe--its eternal and unchanging essence--can be joyfully experienced."  This combination of the spiritual aspect of his performances and the sheer joy and exuberance he expressed while playing the sitar, made him one of the outstanding musical artists of the last 70 years.     

Wikipedia- public media

Continuing our series of podcasts on the African American conductor, I've asked Columbus based conductor Antoine Clark to join me in talking about Henry Lewis (1932-1996).

"What is the difference between a composer and a songwriter?" my thesis advisor asked me just the other day. It's a question that has been coming up in various forms for many years, but as the gap between composers and audiences closes in some respects (namely, the web) who decides between the two titles? I sat down with drummer and recent "non-composer" Luke Brevoort to get his input.

As I write this, I am listening to a great recording of Don Giovanni which starred Samuel Ramey and cast with the Berlin Philharmonic. Ramey's voice is dark and heavy, making him perfect in the role of Mozart's lothario.

For parents who want to introduce their children to the joys of such music, it can be tough. Short attention spans can derail the best-laid plans.

Carol Friedman

OK...they actually walked into a recording studio, but that doesn't make as good of a headline.

Wikipedia- public media

Every week is concert week on Classical 101. Tune in to hear everything from Ravel to Bach with witty insight and conversation from hosts in-the-know. Here's a sneak peek of what's on the menu for next week, January 31 through February 6, 2016. 

Wikipedia- public media

We had the Boston Tea Party; the Chinese had the First Opium War of 1839.  Both were the result of actions by the British that were deemed unjust. The latter earned the attention of contemporary composers Zhou Long and Chen Yi.

Concerts@Ohio State presents performances by the students and faculty from the School of Music at The Ohio State University, Sundays at 1 p.m. on Classical 101. 

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat

After Mozart left - or, rather, was sacked from - his Salzburg court job, he had to make it as a freelance musician in Vienna. To stay in the game and keep the wolf at bay, Mozart organized and performed concert series of his own music, including one in 1784 that gave him much to brag about.

For those who love singers and vocal music, the annual Richard Tucker Foundation Gala is a banquet veering on gluttony. The 2015 Gala, taped last November at Lincoln Center will be shown on WOSU TV Friday, February 5 at 9 p.m.

I've asked Columbus based conductor Antoine Clark to join me for a series of conversations about African-American conductors. Antoine is finishing a doctorate at OSU, and is the founder and music director of the McConnell Arts Center Chamber Orchestra.

The New Albany Symphony will present a sensory-friendly performance at the McCoy Arts Center in New Albany on Saturday, February 6, at 11:30 a.m. The concert is geared for persons, many on the autism spectrum, who find it difficult to attend public events involving lights, crowds, sound or any other sensory difficulty.

This is the second installment in our exploration of the top composers of the 21st century.

There was a period of time when uttering the words New Music caused many to recoil in horror. New sounds, new styles, and new subject matter could sometimes overwhelm ears more accustomed to music from the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries.

Now, however, it's easier than ever to sample music being written today. You're not going to like it all, but I guarantee you'll find something that will make your ears perk up and pull you in.

color photo of Xuefei Yang playing guitar in Classical 101 studio
Nick Houser/WOSU Public Media

It isn’t every day that the world’s leading guitar virtuoso comes to town, but today was that day, and Classical 101 was there when it happened.

International guitar soloist Xuefei Yang stopped by earlier today to play and talk about her career and performance tomorrow evening in Columbus.

The Castellani-Andriaccio Duo's youtube channel /

The Castellani-Andriaccio Duo consists of guitarists Joanne Castellani and Michael Andriaccio, who joined forces way back in 1975 in Toronto.  They're still going strong, and their CD Anima del Sur ("Soul of the South") features music for two guitars from Latin America.  We'll hear Jongo, a Brazillian dance by Paolo Bellinati on the next Fretworks.

Film music can be uninspiring, unimaginative, or simply forgettable. Classical music which is in the public domain turns up often, which saves time and money.

However, two film soundtracks nominated for best original score in this years Oscar chase were written by two of the best...John Williams and Ennio Morricone.

Both men have written music for the silver screen which can stand on it's own merit.


Every week is concert week on Classical 101. Tune in to hear everything from Ravel to Bach with witty insight and conversation from hosts in-the-know. Here's a sneak peek of what's on the menu for next week, January 31 through February 6, 2016. 

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat

For all the partying Mozart seems to have done, he definitely had his prudish side when it came to the company he kept. Just ask Mozart's colleague Antonio Brunetti.

Two great maestros, with a nearly 40 year age gap, combine forces with the Berlin State Orchestra for a timeless work by Brahms. 

color photograph of Xuefei Yang reclining with her guitar
Paul Mitchell / EMI Classics

She has been called one of the “best guitarists in the world” and has been hailed for her “feisty virtuosity, impeccable technique and sensitive musicianship.” Guitarist Xuefei Yang is definitely a talent to watch – and you’ll have a special chance to hear her live Friday at 11 a.m. on Classical 101.

Metropolitan Opera photos

The Metropolitan Opera presents Puccini's Turandot live in HD in movie theaters worldwide on Saturday, January 30th at 1:00 PM. Don't miss Franco Zeffirelli's magnificent production!

WOSU Public Media

Mary Hoffman, long time program director for WOSU has gifted us with her interviews with some of the world's great musicians, done between the mid 1960s to the 1980s. Mary spoke to absolutely everyone, and as you'll hear, they were all delighted to speak with her:

Anytime someone utters the words Classical Music, the image most have is some guy in a powdered wig with a dour expression writing music in the 18th century.

I'm here to give you a different image. One in which you picture someone you might encounter in a coffee shop, grocery store, or even your own neighborhood. Over the next few weeks, I'm going to offer you music by 10 living composers. Some you'll recognize and some you won't. I DO guarantee that they will expand your definition of classical music and allow you to see the wide open music world that is out there.

Cellist Joshua Roman with Classical 101's Boyce Lancaster
Nick Houser / WOSU

Cellist Joshua Roman is no stranger to Columbus audiences. On this trip, however, you'll get to know him a little better. Rather than interpreting music written by others, he unveils his own composition.

Classical guitarist David Russell on stage at Teatro Principal in Mao, Menorca
Courtsey of the artist / Facebook

I bet some of us, if we think of Brazil these days, are thinking either of escaping to the warmer weather or the coming Summer Olympics.  

But think, Brazil and Bach.  Between 1930 and 1945, Brazilian composer Heitor Villa-Lobos wrote nine suites he collectively called Bachianas Brasilieras, marrying the spirit of Brazilian folk and popular music with the harmonic and contrapuntal complexity of the European Baroque, particularly as exemplified by Johan Sebastian Bach.

Placido Domingo singing
City of Buenos Aires / Flickr Creative Commons

Placido Domingo turned 75 today and is rightly regarded as one of the greatest operatic tenors of our time.  In recent years he's switched to singing baritone roles in an amazingly long career to be performing at such a high artistic level.  He's also a conductor.