Classical 91.5

Mona Seghatoleslami

Afternoon host

Mona Seghatoleslami is the host and producer on WXXI Classical 91.5 FM weekdays from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. She also hosts the lunchtime concert series Live From Hochstein Wednesdays at 12:10 p.m., interviews musicians, produces special programs, and works on any project she can find that helps connect people and music in our community through WXXI.

Mona is originally from New Jersey; she ventured out to the Midwest for college, where studied viola at Illinois State University in Normal, Illinois. She got her start in radio at WFIU in Bloomington, Indiana while in grad school studying musicology and library science at Indiana University. She also spent a few years as a radio announcer and producer in West (by God) Virginia, where she also wrote for the Charleston Gazette and taught American music at West Virginia State University.

When she’s not on the radio, you can find Mona attending concerts and movies, playing viola in community orchestras, occasionally strumming the ukulele, riding her bike everywhere, and reading as much as she can – especially The New Yorker and sci-fi novels. She also books the bands for one of the coolest live music venues in Rochester – The Little Theatre Café.

Ways to Connect

Wikimedia Commons

While we celebrated the 300th anniversary of one of the world’s strangest gigs with Handel’s Water Music throughout the day on the radio on WXXI Classical 91.5, a few others were making a splash with some thoughts on Water Music. Here are a couple articles that caught my attention that I thought you might like too. 

Join WXXI for Classical 91.5 Presents, a series that spotlights classical music connections in film. 

Check this out: a collection of music from the 15th century was recently found in a pile of art in Brussels.
 

The Xerox Rochester International Jazz Fest is just starting – 9 days of music in cafes, small clubs, big concert halls, free outdoor stages, recording studios, the public library, and classrooms…lunchtime concerts, afternoons and evenings of music, and late nights that spill into early mornings. There really seems to be something for every taste and approach.

Everyone will have their own list of what you should check out – and then those lists will change as everyone experience the music and discovers their new favorite sound.  You can catch up with my colleague Julia Figueras each day during Morning Edition on WXXI News (at approximately 8:43am) and then catch the Jazz Corner on WRUR at 10:30 each morning on Open Tunings with Scott Regan and Jeff Spevak.  

This is not a metaphor for your soul being transported to another realm – I’ve got physical transportation on my mind.

Now that it is spring, I’m back into biking to work pretty much every day. I’m happy to be out and riding again, even though I did appreciate the chance to read on the bus on my commute this winter. The seasonal change in my travel habits – along with thinking about how we get around as I prepare to host an event for Reconnect Rochester about transportation and sustainability – reminded me of some of my favorite music for bikes – and trains – and even cars. 

Philip Montgomery for The New York Times

  The New York Times recently ran a profile of conductor Alan Gilbert and his work as Music Director at the New York Philharmonic.  It's both a good read to understand more of what's going on with the New York Philharmonic, but also to understand the challenges of leading an orchestra these days. 

Join Classical 91.5's Mona Seghatoleslami at Granite Mills Park in High Falls for Hochstein at High Falls, a free lunchtime concert series, hosted by WXXI, Hochstein School of Music & Dance and the High Falls Business Association. Mona welcomes a new band to the park each week. Please note: This is a live concert series, and will not be broadcast on WXXI radio. Hochstein at High Falls is on Facebook. Visit: facebook.com/hochsteinhighfalls.

Pianist and composer David Costello wants you to relax.

His most recent album “XVII” is a series of unnamed instrumental piano pieces – not exactly classical music, but something drawing on different styles he has played. 

Ralph Lauer

I think of it as the “piano Olympics,” but perhaps the best description of the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition comes from the Boston Globe: “a cross between the Miss America Pageant, the Olympic Games, the Academy Awards, and the Pulitzer Prize.”

Every four years, since 1962, pianists from around the world gather in Fort Worth, Texas to compete for prizes and glory.

Previous Cliburn Gold winners include  Jon Nakamatsu, Vadym Koholodenko, and Olga Kern.

If you weren’t paying attention, you might have missed that these guys will be here in the fall:

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