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


Mandolin player, singer, songwriter Chris Thile is best-known as a founding member of the progressive acoustic trio Nickel Creek and for the quintet, Punch Brothers, where he gets to amply demonstrate his dazzling virtuosity.

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, June 5th - 11th:

Earlier this year, I shared a "musical mashup" by Grant Woolard, consisting of 57 classical melodies from 33 different composers. It was quite fun trying to pick out all of the favorite melodies he had woven together.

When the New York City Opera (NYCO) announced its final performances and imminent bankruptcy in September 2013, opera lovers, not just in Manhattan, were shocked.

A sailor pays his respects to a fallen service member buried at the Brookwood American Cemetery and Memorial in Brookwood, England.
Navy Visual News Service / Flickr Creative Commons

As we head into the fun and (hopefully) sun of the Memorial Day weekend, it's also good to pause and reflect on the paradoxical nature of the holiday, as was pointed out to me in this NPR article, Classical Music Memorials, by Richard Knisely.

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, May 29th - June 4th:

Pablo Villegas
Courtesy of the artist

Leonard Bernstein's West Side Story from 1957 is one of the most enduring musicals with its updating of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet set in New York and the wonderful music that showed Bernstein at his most inspired.  

Those tunes have, not surprisingly, been arranged many times in many different settings.  On the next Fretworks, Spanish guitarist Pablo Villegas will play a medley from West Side Story from his CD "Americano" to begin the hour on this Memorial Day weekend.

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

A previous episode of The Mozart Minute saw the 14-year-old Mozart composing his opera Mitridate, rè di Ponto on commission and for performance in Milan amid all manner of envy and intrigue. How Wolfgang the boy wonder secured a commission for such a large work at such a tender age is a story in its own right.

color photo of a Fender bass guitar decked out with keys from a clarinet and metal tubing fomr a French horn
Artist website /

For Columbus artist Brian Riegel, musical instruments don’t just make art – they are art.

A sculptor who transforms found objects into whimsical artworks, Riegel has in recent years become something of a pied piper for cast-off musical instruments.

wosu 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, May 22-28.

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

Leopold Mozart’s earlier tours to promote his musical children had gone so well that he repeated the experiment, taking Wolfgang alone on three trips to Italy. On one of those tours, father and son spent four months in Milan, where the 14-year-old Mozart composed his opera Mitridate, rè di Ponto on commission to open Milan’s 1770-71 opera season.

color photo of a clarinet lying across a piano keyboard with a copy of sheet music for Jeanjean's 18 Etudes behind
David Thomas

David Thomas is principal clarinetist with the Columbus Symphony Orchestra. He usually performs in concert halls. But recently, he gave a house concert in the east Columbus home of two of his associates.

Sterling Classics

For many Americans, the thought of going to live in a foreign country might seem exotic. Buying a place in a small village where you can walk to the market every day, enjoy sights and sounds you've only read about in travel brochures, enjoy exotic nightlife, and eat exotic foods would be a dream come true, right?

ProMuscia Chamber Orchestra takes a bow
ProMusica Chamber Orchestra / Facebook

One of my favorite aspects of Classical concerts is an audience's reception of the music. I've seen it all; boredom, sleeping, edge-of-your-seat anticipation, and complete rapture. Never have I seen an audience respond with such an appreciation for Prokofiev and Schubert as I did last night, and it was truly earned by every musician onstage.

Wikipedia, public domain

English composer Gustav Holst wrote his St. Paul's Suite in 1912 for the student string orchestra of the St. Paul's School for Girls in London.  With its notable use of English folk songs in the finale of this four-movement piece, throwing in Greensleeeves for good measure,  it remains one of the composer's most popular works.  

Marco Borggreve

ProMusica Chamber Orchestra closed out the 2015-2016 season with two of classical music's greatest masterpieces...Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto No. 2 and Schubert’s Symphony No. 9, also known as simply, The Great.

Fort Worth Opera /

President John F. Kennedy spent the last night of his life in the Hotel Texas in Fort Worth, from where he left for Dallas after an early morning walk about in the rain and a breakfast in the hotel banquet rooms, where his final quip was, when Mrs. Kennedy arrived late, "Nobody cares what Lyndon and I are wearing." 

Sincere thanks to the composer's family for permission to use these images.

One of the most satisfying aspects of a good concert can be the visceral impact of seeing other everyday people, some of whom you personally know, perform onstage. It sounds so simple, but the mystique of the performer can often obscure the empathy and sincerity of their performance.

The Columbus Ohio Discovery Ensemble, aka CODE, does a fantastic job of stripping away the affectations that keep listeners at bay while providing very new and exciting musical experiences. In essence, they know how to keep it real.

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

In a previous episode of The Mozart Minute, the Mozart family’s stay in the Netherlands almost turned tragic. But not only did everyone survive, the young Mozart actually thrived in Holland, making himself popular with Dutch royalty and composing a clutch of new musical works.

black-and-white photo of Lindsey Goodman holding her flute and standing infront of a light-colored door in an exterior brick wall!untitled/zoom/c1zim/i51kgu

What do a baby and a new musical work have in common? Flutist and mezzo-soprano Lindsey Goodman can tell you.

Rick Buchanan

ProMusica Chamber Orchestra closes out the 2015-2016 season this weekend with two of classical music's greatest masterpieces...Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto No. 2 and Schubert’s Symphony No. 9, also known as simply, The Great.

color image of a black ol-styl phone wiht handset resting in a white modem "cradle."
Brian Alexander / Creative Commons/Flickr

Do you remember the sound of a dial-up modem? Kind of R2D2 and Darth Vader all rolled up into one gurgly, bloop-bleep bridge of white noise that could take you beyond these four walls and out into the big, wide world online. Now that sound has inspired a brand-new choral work.

Wikipedia Commons

Contemporary Cuban composer, conductor and guitarist Leo Brouwer is one of the eminent writers for music of the classical guitar and his works are performed by guitarists world-wide. 

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

From 1763 to 1766, Leopold Mozart and his wife, Anna Maria, were touring their prodigiously gifted children through western Europe, making their talents known at some of Europe’s most important courts. Also on this trip, illness brought one of the children to the brink of death.

Chung Ho Leung, Creative Commons, Flickr

This Sunday, Classical 101 has special programming for mothers, grandmothers, and the women who make life special for so many. Whether she's near or far, our listeners can tune in to Classical 101 on-air or online to listen to music fit for mom, this Sunday. 

Undated photo of Carnegie Hall
Gmaemejota / Wikimedia Commons

"How do you get to Carnegie Hall?  Practice!"  I don't know if any other concert hall has its own joke, known around the world by aspiring musicians, but Carnegie Hall has long been one of the most prestigious venues in the world.  The joke supposedly originated when a pedestrian on 57th Street passed Jascha Heifetz and asked the now famous question, with its snappy response.  

color photo of Rachel Barton Pine sitting down and playing her violin in the chancel area of St. Paul's UCC, Chicago
artist publicity video/YouTube

Violinist Rachel Barton Pine’s playing isn’t the only sound you hear on her new recording, Testament: Complete Sonatas and Partitas for Solo Violin by Johann Sebastian Bach (Avie Records). The venue in which Pine made the recording had a voice from the beginning of the project, and shines forth as a brilliant collaborator on the new disc.

A number of years ago, I had a conversation with China Forbes, who sings with Pink Martini. We sat in their Portland headquarters, a 140-year-old building which serves as home base, distribution center, and rehearsal space, not to mention home to the group's founder Thomas Lauderdale, who lives upstairs.