American music | WOSU Radio

American music

color photo of Wil B. and Kev Marcus playing their instruments
Black Violin / https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WYerKidQGcc

They’ve spent the last 15 years breaking stereotypes with their genre-busting songs and instrumentals. Now, Black Violin is adding a heavy dose of full-out inspiration to the mix.

color photo of rehearsal
Broad Street Presbyterian Church / William Boggs/Broad Street Presbyterian Church

Your beautiful infant child is diagnosed with cancer.

Months – even years – of doctor’s visits, tests, surgeries and medical treatments, like everything else in life, offer no guarantees. And even if the illness is brought under control, it still hangs over your family like the sword of Damocles.

It’s every parent’s nightmare. And Brittany and the Rev. Trip Porch, of Granville, have been living this nightmare ever since their son, Ward, was diagnosed with Wilms Tumor, a rare form of kidney cancer, nearly two years ago.

The Central Ohio Symphony
The Central Ohio Symphony

A renowned bassoonist, a respected conductor and a composer whose career is on the rise.

Christopher Weait has worn all three labels for most of his life. And this year he adds another label – octogenarian – to the list.

A former co-principal bassoonist with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and OSU School of Music Professor Emeritus of bassoon, Weait is known in central Ohio and throughout the world as a top-flight orchestral musician and bassoon pedagogue.

color photo of Cosmos Trio in the Classical 101 studio
WOSU Public Media / WOSU Public Media

“This is an amazing place.”

That’s what San Francisco-based composer Stephen Main said recently about Columbus, the namesake of his new work Columbus Triptych, written for the Columbus-based Cosmos Trio.

Main’s Columbus Triptych is just one of a number of new works composed specifically for Cosmos Trio – comprised of flutist Katherine Borst Jones, violist Mary Harris and harpist Jeanne Norton – and featured on the group’s new recording, American Premieres (MSR Classics).

black and white photo of Wynton Marsalis playing trumpet
Luigi Beverelli / Courtsey of Wynton Marsalis

Wynton Marsalis' rare musical versatility has long been a beacon in the worlds of jazz and classical music. Now the Grammy Award-winning trumpeter and Pulitzer Prize-winning composer brings those worlds together in two new works for violin written for one of today's foremost violinists.

color photo of balloons lifting house in Up
Pixar, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures / YouTube

This year marks the 10th anniversary of the animated film Up, directed by Pete Docter, produced by Pixar and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. Set initially in Ohio, Up unfolds in dazzling visuals the outlandish adventures of an elderly widower and a young boy. 

color photo of Stephen Caracciolo conducting LancasterChorale
LancasterChorale / Facebook

“I call it real American music.”

That’s how Stephen Caracciolo, artistic director of the LancasterChorale, describes the program for An American Mosaic, the chorale’s upcoming concert of American folk songs, hymns, spirituals, concert works and popular fare. 

publicity photo / http://www.anthonymcgill.com/press/

Long before clarinetist Anthony McGill and flutist Demarre McGill launched coast-to-coast musical careers, as kids the brothers were each other’s musical inspiration.

“I grew up – even before I played an instrument – listening to my brother practice, for a few years actually. And so I learned probably what the sound of a wind instrument was because of him,” said Anthony McGill in a recent phone interview.

color photo o Yolanda Kondonassis surounded by harps
Laura Watilo Blake / yolandaharp.com

If you think playing the harp is something only angels do, then you’ve never met Yolanda Kondonassis. She's in part the reason why the new harp concerto that Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Jennifer Higdon wrote for Kondonassis is anything but angel food.

Jack Gramann

You might be used to hearing tubas doing oom-pahs down in the basement of the musical range. But the world premiere of Columbus composer and tubist Tony Zilincik’s Tuba Concerto on Sunday afternoon might instead have you looking up at the stars.

color photo of Frank Lee Ruggles
Don Mears / frankleeruggles.photoshelter.com

Two and a half years ago, two people with strong ties to Delaware, Ohio, met each other when they were being inducted into the Delaware City Schools’ Hall of Fame.

color photo of the U.S. Constitution
Josh Hallett / Flickr

Democracy has been called the worst form of government except for all the others. In the United States, democracy is inextricably linked with the presidency, that august office which votes fill, which pundits punch and where the buck famously stops for the commonweal. 

color photo of Ruth Bader Ginsburg
European University Institute / Creative Commons

Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the U.S. Supreme Court Justice. Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the mother and mother-in-law. Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the music lover. And, thanks to the Notorious R.B.G. blog, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the unexpected pop-culture icon.

Now, Ginsburg, 85, is also the inspiration for, and the subject and dedicatee of, a new recording of art songs — many composed specifically for her and in celebration of the quarter-century mark of her Supreme Court career.

a few lines of shape note music
Bill Smith / Flickr

A noted French author once said the accent of one's birthplace persists in the mind and heart as much as in speech.

The same holds true for musical works, and for two musical works, in particular — English composer Ralph Vaughan Williams’ Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis and the American work it inspired, Thomas Canning’s Fantasy on a Hymn Tune.

color photo of Eric Whitacre leading his Live Virtual Choir
ericwhitacre.com

"In 1991, I had maybe the most profound and transformative experience in my life."

That’s how Eric Whitacre began his February 2013 TED Talk about how his choral work Cloudburst and his history-making Virtual Choir project came about.

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