Classical 101 Podcasts

Ken Howard/The Metropolitan Opera

Charles Gounod's opera Roméo et Juliette was first performed in Paris in 1867. This year, The Metropolitan Opera is staging a new production of the opera, with Diana Damrau and Vittorio Grigolo in the title roles. 

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

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 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.

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.

black-and-white photo of Lindsey Goodman holding her flute and standing infront of a light-colored door in an exterior brick wall
http://www.lindseygoodman.com/#!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.

Photo by Marty Sohl/Metropolitan Opera.

 The collaboration between composer Richard Strauss (1865-1949) and librettist Hugo von Hofmansthal (1874-1929) produced the last great run of German language operas,  Der Rosenkavalier Ariadne auf Naxos and Arabella among them.Work between them began not with comedy, nor with domestic drama or fairy tales. All of that came later. Work between them began with Greek tragedy, Sophocles Electra.

http://www.antoineclark.com

The wonderful Antoine Clark is a Columbus based clarinetist, teacher and conductor. Antoine recently took some time out of a ferociously busy schedule to help me with a series of podcasts on African-American conductors.

Metropolitan Opera photos

The Metropolitan Opera presents Donizetti's Roberto Devereux live in HD, beamed into movie theaters worldwide on Saturday, April 16, 2016. This is the Met's first production of Roberto Devereux, and stars Sondra Radvanovsky as Elizabeth I and Matthew Polenzani as Robert Devereux, the Earl of Essex.

image of a color portrait of Mozart wearing a bright red coat
Wikipedia

During Mozart’s life, many a pet dog and even a pet bird wagged and flapped their way into the composer’s heart – and, it seems, into his music, as well.

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

If you've followed The Mozart Minute, then you know that Mozart's stay in Paris was pretty much a flop. He had hoped to establish himself as a composer in Europe’s musical capital, but that didn't happen. And in at least one incident, envy and petty rivalry seem to have kept one of Mozart’s new works from being premiered on a major Parisian concert series.

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

After being sacked by the Archbishop of Salzburg Hieronymous von Colloredo, Mozart held his erstwhile employer in notoriously intense disregard. His disdain was so intense, in fact, that even discussing an improvised performance of some variations (which possibly became the variations K. 359, 360, or 352) at a concert for the Archbishop was enough to set Mozart off.

nmphil.org

Here's another in a series of podcasts on the lives and careers of African-American conductors. 

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a birght red oat
Wikipedia

Even as Mozart was establishing himself Vienna as a freelance composer and performer, his new musical compositions were also establishing themselves among the world’s great masterworks. Here’s how Mozart’s Piano Concerto in D minor, K. 466 made its way into the world.

Unmute Episode 7: The Music of Until Dawn

Mar 9, 2016
Top Dollar PR

You've heard of scary movies and scary books, but have you ever played a scary game? Until Dawn is one of 2015's most terrifying and immersive horror games - in this episode, we'll talk with composer Jason Graves about his inspiration and love for scoring horror.

  Visit composer Jason Graves online

Music in this episode:

  • The Shadow of the Mountain
  • You Go, Girl
  • Icicle Elegy

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

It was an open secret in Mozart's day, as in ours – Mozart didn’t like his job at the Salzburg court of the Archbishop Hieronymous von Colloredo. Mozart’s letters are full of colorful rants about the archbishop. Here’s the story about the day it all blew up.

The Metropolitan Opera promotional photos

The Metropolitan Opera presents a new production of Puccini's Manon Lescaut live in HD in movie theaters worldwide on Saturday, March 5 at 1:00 p.m. The production moves the story based on the Abbe Prevost's  1731 novel to Nazi occupied France in the 1940s.

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

As a freelance musician with a growing family, Mozart couldn’t afford to hide his light under a bushel, and in any event he was never one to be bashful in the first place. With musical gifts as phenomenal as Mozart knew his to be, he didn’t hesitate to put his flashiest skills on display, as he did even before the Holy Roman Emperor in one particular performance that he spiced up in a special way.

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

As a freelance musician more often than not short on cash, Mozart learned early on that, when it comes to making do-re-mi, if you don't succeed, the only thing to do is try and try again.

Maria Callas performs in Amsterdam in 1973.
FredTC / Wikimedia Commons

Mary Rousculp Hoffman was Program Director at WOSU radio through the early 1980s. During her tenure Mary sought out and spoke to some of the world's greatest artists. In future posts we'll hear Mary's visits with Vladimir Horowitz, Igor Stravinsky, Maria von Trapp and Yehudi Menuhin.

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).

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.

Mary Hoffman became program director of WOSU-FM in 1966. Before her retirement thirty years later, Mary interviewed at length some of the greatest musicians of the 20th century.

Diana Damrau as Leila in a new production of Bizet's "Les pêcheurs de perles."
Kristian Schuller / Metropolitan Opera

The Metropolitan Opera presents Georges Bizet's Les pecheurs de perles  (The Pearl Fishers)  live in HD in movie theaters world wide on Saturday, January 16 at 1 pm.

Unmute Episode 6: The Music of Fallout 4

Dec 23, 2015
Top Dollar PR

As 2015 comes to a close, Unmute will explore the music of two of the year's top games. In this episode, we'll have a conversation with Fallout 4's Inon Zur about his dynamic and thoughtful music for the game.

Wikipedia

The history of music, much like the early history of beer, centers around people who were passionate about improving their craft and making it accessible. In this podcast, I take a look at a bit of the history of early chant repertoire and how it relates to the development of everyone's favorite malt beverage. 

The Metropolitan's Opera's new production of Lulu, by Alban Berg will be shown live from New York in movie theaters world-wide, as part of the Met's Live in HD Series, on Saturday, November 21 at 12.30 p.m. Locally, Lulu may be seen at AMC Lenox, Crosswoods Theaters, or Polaris.

It's fair to say that in opera, there is Lulu and there is everything else.

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

Mozart wrote the opening chords of his so-called "Paris" Symphony (Symphony No. 31) specifically to pander to French expectations, which is not to say to pander to French taste. Mozart didn't think the French had any taste. He also thought they were ridiculous for thinking that symphonies that begin this way were especially French.

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

Think the price of stocks and bonds fluctuates wildly? Imagine the price of a genius composer's brand-new set of piano concertos. 

Peter Mattei as Wolfram, Johan Botha in the title role, Günther Groissböck as Landgraf Hermann and Eva-Maria Westbroek as Elisabeth in Wagner's Tannhäuser.
Marty Sohl / Metropolitan Opera

The Metropolitan Opera presents Richard Wagner's Tannhauser, live in HD from the Met in New York, in movie theaters worldwide on Saturday, October 31 at 1 pm.

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

Mozart's 1778 stay in Paris was pretty much a total washout. Instead of making his name there as a composer, he was rebuffed and ignored. His mother died. He was cold and starving. And people kept stiffing him for his work.

While in France, Mozart had to take on private students to pay the bills. One of those students was the daughter of Adrien-Louis de Bonnières, the Duc de Guînes. The duke was nonchalant about compensating the struggling Mozart for his work. On July 31, 1778, Mozart wrote his father of one such unsavory episode.

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